If you’re one of many health-conscious dieters who have worked hard to lose weight, only to gain it back, you’re not alone. A UCLA study found that while most people lost weight within six months of starting a diet for weight loss, up to 66% of them regained all the pounds they lost, and more, within five years.
So, how do you beat these odds? The good news is that when it comes to weight loss, it’s not all about dieting. By incorporating some tried-and-true weight loss and lifestyle approaches, you’ll be ditching those unwanted pounds in no time – and keeping the weight off for good.
Curb the sugar cravings
Taming your sweet tooth can be one of your best defenses against keeping the weight off. Here’s why: Sugar contains empty calories that can cause your glucose levels to spike – and then crash, leading to bingeing cycles that can derail your efforts. And the effects of sugar go beyond your belt line. Studies reveal sugar can affect you physically and emotionally. So, what’s the best approach to reducing your sugar intake? Experts suggest eating high-fiber foods that are known to help regulate blood sugar throughout the day. Green, leafy vegetables are a good choice as well as seasonal fruits. Try fooling your taste buds by putting balsamic vinegar on strawberries, for example, which can mimic the taste of chocolate. And beware of drinking diet soda, as studies link its consumption to an increased risk for obesity.
Have you ever finished a bag of chips or a container of ice cream and asked yourself, “How did I eat the entire thing?” Mindless eating can sabotage any diet for weight loss and make us feel defeated. Instead, try practicing mindful eating by being aware of what you’re putting in your mouth.
Continuing research reveals when people eat mindfully, they start to lose weight. It takes 20 minutes from the time you start eating to realize you’re full. Eating too quickly can cause you to overeat.
Instead, take your time at each meal. Here are some tips to stay focused on your food:
- Sit down at a table instead of the computer.
- Do not eat while watching television.
- Eat with your non-dominant hand to slow the process.
- Use a plate instead of eating out of containers.
- Make sure the very first bite is mindful.
Always make time for breakfast
Most people would agree that timing is everything, so it’s no surprise that when you consume your calories can make all the difference in losing weight and keeping the weight off. Eating as many calories as you can early in the day can give you the energy you need to get going.
Making the right breakfast food choices plays a major role in being successful. Skip the cold cereal routine and try eating eggs. They not only pack a powerful nutritional punch, but they can be prepared in different ways, such as scrambled, sunny-side up, or in omelets. You should also skip fruit-flavored yogurt, which is packed with sugar. Instead, opt for plain yogurt and add your own fresh fruit. Another option is a filling, breakfast smoothie bowl.
Supplements could be just the thing to give you the added push you need to shed those extra pounds. (Always consult a healthcare practitioner for help in designing a supplementation program.)
- Green tea and ginger: Boosts metabolism.
- Coleus forskohlii: Contains a substance called forskolin, which promotes lean body mass formation.
- Raspberry ketones: Promote the breakdown of body fat.
- Garcinia cambogia: A small pumpkin-like fruit that’s native to southeast Asia, it contains hydroxycitric acid (HCA), which inhibits the development of fat stores while supporting healthy blood sugar levels.
- Ascophyllum Nodosum and Fucus Vesiculosus: Extracts from brown seaweed that helps block enzymes that convert starch into sugar within the digestive tract
- Cassia Nomame: A Chinese herb that helps block intestinal fat absorption.
- Rhodiola: A herb found in Siberia that helps boost energy and fight depression.
Believe it or not, maintaining your weight loss has a lot to do with reinforcing the brain’s “reward-and-motivation” system. An amino acid-based formulation called Synaptose does that by supporting production of dopamine, a brain chemical that has been shown to control cravings and influence energy production.
Maintain Your Momentum
It’s time to show off the new you! Below are some suggestions which will help you enjoy some much-earned downtime while keeping the weight off.
When going away, chose a location where you can enjoy sports, hiking, or other calorie-burning activities. Be sure to stock your room with plenty of water and fresh fruit. When dining out, eat what you like, but set boundaries for yourself and stick to them. You should take the same approach to holiday eating by asking yourself: “What do I really love? I can do without the stuffing, but I want the pecan pie.”
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