2017 is well underway, so how are your weight loss resolutions going? Are you managing to lose weight despite the temptations that surround us in our everyday lives?
If you are starting to struggle then we have a few tips for you. Please read on to discover some methods that will help you stick to your weight loss resolutions.
#1: Allow yourself the occasional “cheat” meal
A diet that is too strict will likely become boring quite quickly, which unfortunately will be difficult to stick to.
To avoid completely falling off the wagon, allow yourself the occasional cheat meal. You wont feel as though you are denying yourself, and will still be eating healthily the majority of the time.
#2: Use healthy substitutes
There are so many alternatives you can choose when losing weight, for example:
- Swapping whole milk for semi-skimmer or even skimmed milk
- Swap white bread for wholegrain varieties
- Swapping salted nuts for unsalted
These are just a few examples, I am sure you can think of some of your own.
These food swaps will taste similar, but will save you vital calories.
#3: Don’t shop when hungry
If you go to the local shop when hungry then you are more likely to pick up those tempting high-calorie foods.
I would suggest only shopping on a full stomach.
#4: Brush your teeth after you eat
If you have ever tried to eat after brushing your teeth you will know that the taste is disgusting, which will surely put you off snacking between meals.
#5: Celebrate your achievements
To keep motivation levels high and to ensure you stay focused on your goals I would recommend that you celebrate your achievements.
Every time you reach one of your small goals, reward yourself, just not with food.
#6: Eat foods you enjoy
Just because you are eating healthy does not mean that your diet should be boring.
There are so many healthy foods, and they are not all bland like celery sticks.
Experiment and look for recipes you can try. I am sure with a little experimentation you can find some foods that are not only healthy buy enjoyable too.
#7: Don’t starve yourself
This is not the way to lose weight, and even if you do lose weight to start you are unlikely to stick to this method for the long term.
What will likely occur is that you will over-indulge at a later point, which will undo any weight lost so far.
You will also find that starving yourself will affect your metabolic rate, as your body will take steps to hold onto its fat reserves.
When this occurs your metabolism will slow, so fewer calories are burnt. Your metabolism will stay slow for a while too, so even once you start eating properly you will likely regain any lost weight.
#8: Drink plenty of water
To lose weight you may think the only thing you need to change is what you eat, unfortunately this is probably not the case.
What you drink will also have an impact on your weight, especially if you drink a lot of soft drinks.
These soft drinks are full of calories, with even those diet alternatives shown to cause cravings for sugary foods.
Your best option is water, it is free of calories and has been shown to curb cravings, especially when consumed prior to a meal.
#9: Eat more eggs
Eggs are a good source of protein, which is essential for any weight loss efforts.
The reason for this is that protein is highly satiating, which means that it is filling and will keep you full too.
Protein is also essential if you are planning on working out regularly. This is because it will help repair the damaged muscles broken during your workouts.
#10: Find a friend to exercise with
Working out with a friend will keep you accountable for your actions. Meaning you are less likely to take it easy.
You can push each other and your workouts may even be more fun.
#11: Use the “half-plate” rule
Basically this rule states that for every meal you should fill half your plate with fruit and vegetables.
There is a good reason for this. Fruits and vegetables are naturally lower in calories, but are full of the nutrients your body needs for good health.
The remainder of your plate can be filled with proteins, complex carbs and good fats for a healthy meal that will leave you satisfied.
#12: Get a good nights sleep
A lack of sleep can affect your weight loss efforts, not only because you are less likely to be able to resist those high-calorie treats the next day, but also because your hormones can be affected too.
Sleeping less than the recommended 7 hours per night can cause the hormones that control your appetite to be affected, leading to more food cravings.
Also, the stress hormone cortisol will be over-produced too, resulting in your body holding onto its fat reserves.
#13: Keep a food diary
This is a vital part of your weight loss attempt, as you are able to look back over the diary to see if any changes are necessary.
Sometimes people are simply unaware of what they have eaten, so having a written reference is perfect.
If you track your weight and include photos of your progress this diary can also serve as a motivational tool too. It can show you just how much progress you have made so far.
#14: Make small changes
It can be tempting to make dramatic changes to your diet overnight, but this is not recommended.
For a greater chance of success I would recommend making smaller changes to begin, and then to make further changes as you progress.
If you make too drastic a change it will be too much of a shock that you will be unlikely to stick with.
#15: Pack your own lunch
By packing your own work lunch you are taking control of what you eat during the day.
If you don’t do this then chances are you will be tempted by the unhealthy pizza, burgers and chips that are available on the high street.
#16: It’s not all or nothing
We all make mistakes from time to time, but if you do make a mistake it is not the end of the world.
You are allowed the occasional indulgence (see our first tip), so if you do slip up, simply move on and forget about it.
If you give up your efforts entirely then you have wasted all the previous good work you have done.
#17: Stand at work
Nowadays many of us work in offices where we spend the majority of the day on your bottoms.
Doing this day in and day out is not good for your weight or your health, with research showing this can lead to weight gain and a variety of health problems.
To avoid these issues I would recommend that occasionally you get up and walk around your office.
#18: Chew slower
Chewing slowly and more often offers numerous benefits.
Firstly, it will help with the digestive process, plus as it slows down the rate you eat it can also help cut the amount you eat too.
It takes around 20 minutes for your brain to receive the signal from your stomach that it is full. So, if you are eating slowly you are giving yourself chance to receive the signal.
#19: Have a healthy snack to hand
Unhealthy snacking between meals can ruin the rest of your good work. Therefore it makes sense to choose a healthy snack rather than reaching for a chocolate bar or a packet or crisps.
Fresh fruit or a handful of nuts make an ideal snack for when you are peckish.
#20: Tell your friends
When you tell your friends your weight loss goals you are taking responsibility for your actions.
You wont want to disappoint them, plus it will hopefully stop them tempting you with their own unhealthy food choices.