In the past 30 years the number of people who suffer from being overweight and obesity has grown significantly. The weight loss industry is growing to meet the demand, but the number of people who are overweight only continues to grow.
What’s the problem?
Here’s the bottom line. The real way that people can lose weight and keep it off is not related to a fad diet, eating only cabbage or plugging into some electrical stimulation program that promises to work off the fat and make you a lean, mean calorie burning machine.
Instead, the real way that real people lose weight is to do the work of living a healthy lifestyle. Here are 10 of the most important tips you can follow to lose all the weight you want.
Often overlooked, sleep is important to your overall health and weight loss efforts for a number of reasons. Many people will eat more if they are tired in an effort to stay awake. The behavior is subconscious and most are never aware that they were doing it! Sleep reduces your stress and your cortisol levels, a hormone which can encourage the body to put on more fat. When you are sleep deprived you are also more likely to give in to temptations.
A simple 8 glasses of water per day (8 ounces each) will also help your body to flush toxins and burn calories and fat more efficiently. Just a 1 percent dehydration can reduce your performance at tasks that require analytical skills, like math, and you will percieve that you are hungry instead of thirsty. If you feel hungry, the first thing to do is drink 8 -10 ounces of water and wait a few minutes. You just may have been thirsty!
Excercise is important to any weight loss program because it helps your body to burn calories. However, don’t be gung-ho at first or you’ll be so sore the next day that you’ll drop your exercise routine. If you’ve never done a fitness program work up to walking for 30 minutes everyday and move on from there.
Each calorie might be burned differently in your body, but don’t be fooled into thinking that they don’t count. I don’t care if the calories you eat are all carbs, all fat or all protein (depending upon which camp of nutritional experts you ascribe to) if you eat many more calories than you burn off everyday you’ll gain weight. Try www.myfitnesspal.com to help track your nutritional intake, set goals and produce reports about your eating habits.
5. Fat vs carbs
There are some who still believe that eating a low fat diet is the way to better health and lower weight. However, all you are doing is increasing the amount of carbs you eat to make up for the calories lost. Carbs will increase your cravings, spike your blood sugar and increase the amount of triglycerides your body produces. Try increasing the amount of GOOD fats you eat, from nuts, seeds and fatty fish or avocados. You’ll feel more full for longer periods and lose your cravings for sugar and sweets.
6. Change Your Environment
Just like smokers must leave an environment that triggers their desire to light up or an alcoholic shouldn’t go into a bar, so you should change your environment and leave behind the places and friends who trigger your desire for high calorie foods or multiple snacking during the day.
7. Reduce Stress
Many people are stress eaters and will eat to reduce their level of stress or when they are celebrating. Learn some techniques to reduce your stress. You’ll also reduce the amount of cortisol your body produces. This hormone secreted by the Adrenal glands on top of the kidneys will produce more body fat.
8. Get up during the day
Even if you spend an hour a day working out, you will continue to be at higher risk for weight gain and heart conditions when you spend your day sitting behind a desk. Put a timer on your computer and get up every 15 minutes to stretch, walk a bit and get the blood moving. It will keep your body burning calories too.
9. Be accountable
Find a friend or relative who is making the same positive lifestyle changes you are and team up. Life is easier when you have someone to call when you dont’ want to walk or that chocolate cake is calling you.
10 Be realistic and consistent
It can be hard to be realistic when everyone you see is model thin and each diet promises you instant results. Just remember that it took more than 2 weeks to put the weight on and it will take more than 2 weeks to take it off. Work consistently at changing your lifestyle choices and recognize that little changes can make big differences in the long run.
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