There are many fad diets out there that promise fast and simple weight loss solutions. Some may work, but soon after you complete the diet you gain the weight back.
The only way to lose weight and keep it off is to eat healthy and exercise. Here, we outline what that means. Most importantly, cut out carbs and sugars, add veggies, and get more active.
1. Cut Out Sugars And Carbs
According to integrative medicine, sugars and carbs are the most fattening things you can put in your body. Once you cut these out, your body will stop using carbohydrates for energy and begin burning stored fat.
Your kidneys will begin shedding sodium and water decreasing extra water weight the body has been storing.
Cutting sugar and carbs is more important than cutting calories because calories are not always bad. We need calories for energy.
However, when you start eating fewer sugars and carbs, you will feel less hungry, therefore needing fewer calories to feel full and energized.
Although fruit is high in sugar- some fruit is okay. Fruits also contain fiber, which is good for the bacteria in your gut and lowering bad cholesterol. Mangos, apples, bananas, and strawberries are all good sources of fiber.
Limit your fruit consumption to the morning and afternoon, however, as this is the best time for fruit digestion.
2. Cut Down Alcohol
According to the Department of Health and Human Services, moderate drinking is one or less drink per day for women and two or less for men. Each alcoholic drink you consume is high in calories and does not provide any nutritional value.
In a study by Obesity Journal, 49,000 women were evaluated over an 8-year period for their alcohol consumption and weight gain.
The average weight gain for women who consume alcohol was 5.8 kg (12.79 lb). The study further explained that the more heavily the women drank, the more weight they gained.
Although you do not need to completely abstain from alcohol, as moderate drinking does not cause a significant weight gain- you want to make sure to keep your drinking under control. Another thing to note is that the food you consume while drinking is rarely ever healthy.
Food served at bars is typically fried, greasy, and non-nutritional. Also, notice the amount of one drink. One glass of wine is 5 ounces, however, most restaurants serve 6-8 ounce glasses. Measure your wine when you pour it at home, too.
3. Eat As Many Veggies As You Want
Great news! You can eat as many vegetables as you want. If you still feel hungry after a meal or need a snack, opt for veggies until you feel full. Some healthy, low-carb veggies include, spinach, kale, and other leafy greens, broccoli, tomatoes, and Brussel sprouts.
Veggies, just like fruits, are high in fiber improving your metabolism and burning belly fat. The fiber in veggies also helps you feel full faster. So don’t be afraid to eat as many veggies as you want.
4. Drink Water
We all know that staying hydrated is important. Water gives you energy, supports healthy digestion, helps excrete waste and is good for your skin. Water helps in burning calories and fat.
You burn 2 to 3 percent more calories in the 90 minutes after drinking water. Without water, the body cannot metabolize carbs or fats. Water interacts with triglycerides to convert them to fatty acids and glycerol for energy.
Drink a full glass of water 15-30 minutes before each meal. This will help you feel more full and stop eating sooner. Feel like you need a snack? Drink a glass of water. We sometimes confuse being thirsty for being hungry. If you are still hungry- grab some veggies.
Water also helps you decrease calories from other sugary drinks you may be consuming instead. Keep a reusable bottle of water with you at all times to prevent reaching for other sweet high-calorie drinks.
5. Don’t Be Hungry
Keep in mind you do not need to starve yourself to lose weight. Eat when you are hungry. But, be mindful of the types of food you are ingesting. Eat small, but frequent meals to avoid being hungry. You can constantly be snacking on foods like veggies or nuts if you feel the need to eat.
However, never more than the size of your fist- as this is the normal size of your stomach- to avoid stretching the stomach. Remember, sometimes when you feel hungry drinking water may relieve this feeling.
6. Don’t Eat White
White foods, such as flour, white rice, potatoes, pasta, white bread, and sugary cereals are high in refined carbohydrates. Instead, consider eating brown rice, quinoa, barley, whole wheat bread, and brown sugar.
Of course, not all white foods are bad. White veggies such as cauliflower, white fish, and poultry are safe to eat.
7. Cardio And Weights
Your diet is just part of your weight loss journey. Supplement your healthy eating with cardio to burn fat and weight lifting 3 times a week to build muscle. You also burn calories when lifting weights and help speed your metabolism up.
8. Get Good Sleep
Your body restores itself while you sleep. In a study published in Annals of Internal Medicine, researches aimed to show that more sleep is associated with more weight loss in dieting adults.
They found that participants who slept 7 or more were more successful in losing weight when dieting. Those who slept 5 hours burned less fat and felt more hungry throughout the day.
What Do I Do If This Isn’t Working
If you have been eating healthy and exercising regularly and you are still not losing weight- you might have a hormonal imbalance.
Hormones are powerful chemicals that tell your organs and tissues what to do. Sometimes, you can be doing everything right in your weight loss journey, but even a slight hormonal imbalance will prevent you from losing any weight.
Consider seeing a doctor if you suspect you have a hormonal imbalance. Your doctor will perform a physical exam and take a blood test.
A holistic doctor like Natalya Fazylova is an expert in hormonal imbalances and integrative methods for treating them.
In conclusion, there is no way to lose weight besides eating healthy. Cut out carbohydrates and sugars is the first step to being healthier.
Add some fruits and as many veggies as you want. Add a work out routine or even a daily walk to help burn more calories and fat.
If you do all this and are still not losing weight, consider getting your hormonal levels tested.