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Top tips for losing weight and keeping it off

From: In Great Shape,

26
January
2012
Top tips for losing weight and keeping it off

Following on from yesterday’s introduction, here are a few of my top weight loss tips:

1. Play by the numbers

No matter where it comes from, a calorie is a calorie, and it takes 3,500 calories to gain or lose a pound. Want to shed a perfectly respectable 1 pound per week? Carve 500 calories off your day by thinking through your healthy food choices and upping your exercise.

But make sure you're not cutting too many calories. Drastically reducing food intake could slow your metabolism and sabotage your efforts to build muscle, which is needed to burn maximum calories and be toned. To make calories count, choose nutrient-rich healthy foods with a mix of protein, carbs and fats at every meal for an overall balanced healthy diet.

2. Consider nutrition first

Eat plenty of healthy foods full of the six nutrients most often lacking in women's diets. The quality and length of our lives depend on our health; our bodies thrive only when nourished with optimal amounts of the more than 40 nutrients and 12,000 photochemicals found in minimally processed foods.

And, these also aid in weight loss. If you focus more on your health and less on your waistline, you will automatically eat more low-calorie, nutrient-packed healthy foods, like vegetables, fruits, whole grains, non-fat dairy products and legumes, which help you maintain your weight.

3. Learn how to control food cravings

Cut out the specific items in whatever category—carbs, sweets, protein - gives you difficulty, without cutting out the nutrition. Give pretzels the heave-ho but don't dismiss whole-grain breads. Has ice cream become a problem? Instead, snack on single-serving portions of yogurt - you can freeze them for a real ice cream feel.

4. Set your own rules

The best way to achieve that same clarity when you're trying to lose weight is to set some rules. Find yourself snacking on cereal at night? Make an only-for-breakfast rule. If you slip, no cereal in your house for a month! Tend to dive into the bread basket as soon as the waiter brings it around? Set a one-starchy-carb-per-restaurant-meal rule. If you want the bread, tell yourself before you head out that you'll skip the potato or pasta that comes with your meal. To make the rules official, write them down.

5. Choose nutritious foods with staying power

Fill up on wholesome, fibre-rich, water-filled healthy foods like vegetables, fruits, whole grains and beans, which fill you up faster for longer on fewer calories. And how you eat is as important as what you eat. A growing body of research shows that the best way to keep your metabolism revved and body-fat levels low is to feed yourself in small amounts. Eat airline-size (rather than restaurant-size) portions of healthy foods like meat, fish, pasta, grains and desserts. And eat every three to four hours, for a total of five/six mini-meals per day.

6. Enjoy food

You're much more likely to stick with a diet if your food looks, tastes and smells delicious. Feeling deprived will only backfire. Make a plan you can live with by livening up healthy foods with herbs and spices like basil, curry and ginger, aromatic veggies like garlic and onions and condiments like mustard, hot pepper sauce or salsa. Experiment with new nutritious foods: tantalize your taste buds with two new fruits or vegetables at each meal. Don't declare high-fat favourites 'off limits' - savour them in small amounts to maintain a balanced healthy diet. Even better, know the healthier - but just as tasty - alternatives!

7. Strive for an overall balanced healthy diet

For energy, satisfaction, staying power and good health, aim to eat a healthy balance of protein, fat and carbohydrate each day. Rule of thumb: Fill one quarter of your modest sized (9”) plate with lean protein, one quarter with healthy starchy carbs, half with salad or vegetables.

Enjoyed reading this post? Stay tuned for more great tips, coming soon.

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Carole Hill is a professional Weight Loss and Wellness Coach. Having personally struggled for 23 years with weight and wellness issues, Carole finally found a lifestyle & nutrition plan that allowed her to lose 75lbs and 6 dress sizes and has kept it off since 2004. Carole now shares her success methods with her clients and offers a simple, flexible solution for long term weight loss and wellness.

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