Many people are all or nothing when it comes to working out or eating better. Research shows that this type of behavior usually doesn’t lead to long term results. Instead, you should focus on making changes slowly, so that they become habits and not just a temporary fix. If you view these changes as temporary, the weight will come back. Try making one of these changes and mastering it for a week or two. Then make another change. If you want to lose weight and keep it off, you are in it for the long haul, not just a couple weeks.
- Add vegetables at every meal. Vegetables are full of fiber which helps digestion and keeps you feeling full on few calories per serving. They also pack a lot of nutrients such as vitamins and minerals you need.
- Avoid added sugar or refined carbohydrates (soda, white bread, pasta, etc.) Eating excess carbohydrates leads to imbalances in your hormones such as insulin which leads to fat storage, preventing you from utilizing the fat already stored in your body for energy.
- Eat lean protein at every meal. Protein helps you recover from workouts and build lean muscle. It also helps you feel fuller, longer. When restricting calories trying to lose weight, it helps you maintain your muscle mass, so that you lose more weight from fat and not muscle. Having more muscle mass keeps your resting metabolic rate higher, increasing your overall metabolism. You should strive to eat 1 gram per pound of body weight every day.
- Drink more water. You should drink half of your body weight in ounces per day. Example, if you weigh 200 lbs, you should drink 100 oz of water per day. If you are more active or are outside in the heat, you may need more. Hydration helps with many bodily functions, afteral your body is about 60% water.
- Limit alcohol to 2-3 drinks a week. Alcohol disrupts sleep and adds empty calories into our diet.
- Eat fish 1 to 2 times a week. Adding more omega-3 fatty acids into your diet decreases inflammation in your body. Also, there are studies that show fish oil helps turn on genes that promote your body to metabolize fat.
- Spice up your food with spices instead of high calorie sauces. This will decrease your calorie consumption while still giving you flavor.
- Add a protein supplement, fish oil, and a multivitamin into your diet. If you don’t get enough protein, regularly eat fish, or eat enough vegetables and fruit, this is your insurance policy.
- Eat frequent, smaller meals. Eating more regularly helps you avoid cravings where you might grab the most convenient foods, most of which are unhealthy.