Who said that losing weight needs to be difficult? People love the idea of shedding those pounds but they usually don’t relish the long days at the gym and the calorie counting that goes along with it.
But ask any fitness expert and they will tell you that controlling your diet is the key to burning fat. Exercise only con
tributes 10% to weight loss, whereas 90% of your success is determined by what you eat.
You’re much more likely to lose weight successfully if you are consistent and incorporate long-term dietary changes into your lifestyle, rather than relying on here today, gone tomorrow diet fads.
And another thing - you don’t have to quit your unhealthy eating habits cold turkey either - it’s all about taking those moderate, baby steps as you inch steadily towards your goal.
So without further ado, let’s hack into some of the top 10 diet tips that will help you shed those pounds.
Swap one of your meals for a delicious smoothie
Rather than reaching for that second helping of fries, try replacing one of your meals with a healthy smoothie instead. You could try blending a combination of greens, fruit and nuts, or try something a little more exotic like coconut water, pineapple and yoghurt.
Another simple trick to help you drop a jean size is to simply eat smaller portions. Try reducing your meal sizes steadily, until you’re eating half the amount you would usually eat. So for example, you could serve yourself one cooking spoon of rice instead of two, or eat a quarter chicken instead of a half chicken. If you use a smaller plate, it makes it look like there is more food than there actually is.
Drink hot water
Drinking hot water helps you to reduce your appetite. It also helps you to get full more quickly. Try squeezing a little lemon or lime into your hot water for a mini detox.
Simply changing the times you eat can have a radical effect on your weight. If you eat late at night, your body doesn’t get a chance to digest the food properly, so it stores any excess energy as fat. Ideally, you should conclude all of your meals by 6pm in the evening.
Use lettuce instead of tortillas
If you love a good tortilla wrap, then try eating lettuce with your fillings instead. This will reduce the amount of carbs in your diet and it makes for a delicious snack too!
Snack on fruit and nuts
Rather than reaching for that packet of crisps, why not snack on nuts and seeds instead? You could combine these with fruit, which will give you all the energy and sugars you need. It will also help to keep hunger at bay during the day. Carry some with you wherever you go, so that you always have food available and are not tempted to go for an unhealthy snack instead.
Eat sweet potato instead of normal potato
Did you know that sweet potatoes have a much lower glycemic index (GI) than their yellow counterparts? The glycemic index is based on how slowly or how quickly those foods cause increases in blood glucose levels and it helps to separate the ‘good carbs’ from the ‘bad carbs’. Try eating sweet potato wedges instead of chips or rice. Carbs with a lower GI are digested more slowly in the system.
Eat before going out
If you eat your meals before heading out the door, you’re much less likely to succumb to cravings and reach for that takeaway instead of a salad. The key to creating consistency and success with your diet is to plan your meals in advance and take account of any trips or events you’ve got planned.
Eat fruit instead of sugar
We all know that fruit is healthier than sugar, because fruit contains water and other minerals which help to neutralise the harmful effects of sugar. It is also metabolised in the system much more slowly, so it doesn’t give you that sugar crash, nor does it get stored as excess fat. Table sugar has no nutritional benefits and will often get stored as fat.
Opt for low sugar, instead of low fat
Most people think that low-fat products are better for helping you to lose weight. The problem is they are often loaded with lots of sugar and salt to compensate for the lack of fat. However, the fat itself does not contribute significantly to weight loss - whereas the sugar does. Not all fats are bad, some are actually critical to our health, such as Omega 3. Sugar, on the other hand, is a carbohydrate that will eventually turn into fat in the body. It affects insulin resistance and blood sugar levels, which make you crave more sugary and unhealthy foods.