Friday, June 14, 2024
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12 Ways to Lose Weight Naturally According to Experts

A picture of someone losing weight
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12 Ways to Lose Weight Naturally According to Experts

Source: Pinterest

There are so many weight loss recommendations out there like drinking celery juice or eating weight loss “cookies.” But there are also plenty of legitimate tips backed by research for those who have weight loss as a goal and are in the right mindset.

People have different reasons for wanting to lose weight, and it is easy to fall into the trap of diets that promise quick results. But here’s the thing: losing weight too quickly can have negative effects.

It’s all about finding a safe, successful, and sustainable approach to weight loss. Let’s share some expert advice and research on how to do it right and keep the weight off.

Prioritizing Protein

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Protein is great for boosting metabolism because your body burns more calories when digesting and metabolizing it compared to carbohydrates. It also keeps you feeling fuller for longer and helps stabilize blood sugar levels.

You don’t have to rely on large cuts of meat to get the benefits of protein. A good tip is to include a protein source with each meal or snack. According to registered dietician Maya Bach, Plant-based proteins are a fantastic choice because they are packed with antioxidants, and fiber, and are cholesterol-free. You can start small by replacing animal proteins like chicken with beans, tofu, or edamame.

Eating Breakfast

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Skipping breakfast in hopes of losing weight might seem like a good idea, but it can backfire. When you wait too long to eat after waking up, your blood sugar levels can drop, leaving you feeling hungry by lunchtime. And when we are hungry, we tend to make less healthy choices.

Not all breakfasts are created equal. Foodtrainers founder Lauren Slayton, suggests skipping carbs and opting for protein-rich options is a great way to start your day. Having foods like eggs, protein smoothies, Greek yogurt with fruit, or chia pudding can help you feel satisfied and curb those carb cravings later on.

Drink Plenty Of Water

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Staying hydrated is so important for our overall health, especially when we are exercising. Sometimes we mistake thirst for hunger, which can lead to unnecessary snacking. So, it’s crucial to stay hydrated not just for weight management but for our overall well-being. “Staying hydrated is key for weight management and for health overall,” registered dietitian Jackie London said.

It can be tempting to grab sugary drinks when you are thirsty, but try to make water your go-to choice instead. Keep a pitcher of water at your desk as a reminder, and carry a reusable water bottle with you when you are on the move. Drinking water first thing in the morning is a great habit. It helps support your gut health, boosts your energy levels, and ensures you start your day feeling hydrated and refreshed.

Try Avoiding Soda Diet

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Liquid calories can be sneaky and not as satisfying as solid calories. Studies have shown that when we consume liquid calories, we tend to add them on top of our food before feeling full. It is important to be mindful of our intake of juices, smoothies, sodas, and other beverages. “Diet” sodas that are artificially sweetened aren’t necessarily a healthy alternative either.

Artificial sweeteners can be a bit controversial. Some studies suggest that they don’t affect weight, but others indicate that calorie-free drinks might stimulate hunger and lead to weight gain. To play it safe, Dr. Lori Shemek, a nutrition and weight loss expert, advises avoiding them altogether. She believes that diet sodas can set the brain up for craving more sugar, and some people even become addicted to them.

Always Watch Your Sodium Intake

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Like added sugars, many Americans consume too much sodium, which can increase the risk of high blood pressure and make it harder to maintain a healthy weight. One of the best ways to reduce salt intake is by avoiding processed foods. It’s important to find ways to limit the amount of sodium we get from processed foods.

Foods labeled as low-fat or low-calorie may seem appealing, but they often contain high levels of sodium and are heavily processed. It is much better to opt for whole, single-ingredient foods that are naturally filling. And if you are looking for ways to reduce sodium intake, Bach suggests seeking out lower-sodium versions of bread, cereals, canned beans, and pasta sauces.

Take It Easy With Refined Carbs

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Carbohydrates themselves are not inherently unhealthy, but it’s a good idea to limit our intake of refined carbs. These are also known as simple or processed carbs. Refined carbs have been stripped of their beneficial nutrients and fiber, making them easily digested. Studies have shown that this can increase the risk of overeating and weight gain. Examples of refined carbs include white flour, white bread, white rice, and pastries.

Carbohydrates are an important part of our diet, but research shows that low-carb diets can be effective for weight loss. By limiting carbs and increasing fat and protein intake, we can reduce our calorie intake. However, it’s important to note that extreme low-carb diets like keto may not be sustainable in the long term and shouldn’t be considered a lifelong lifestyle change.

Ensure Eating At The Table

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With our busy schedules, it can be tough to find time for sit-down meals. But it’s important to make the effort because sitting down for dinner has multiple benefits. Not only does it give you a chance to connect with your family, but it’s also great for your health. Mindful eating during a sit-down meal has been shown to have significant effects on weight.

Mindful eating is all about increasing awareness while eating. Eating at the table is one way to make conscious food choices and be more aware of what we’re eating. When we eat mindlessly while doing other things, it can lead to overconsumption and poorer food choices.

Usage of Smaller Plates

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It may sound strange, but it makes sense that a larger plate can lead to more food consumption. People tend to fill their plates regardless of the size, but studies have shown that using smaller plates can help you eat less. It’s because smaller plates change how we perceive portion sizes.

When we use a plate that’s too big, it’s easy to give ourselves larger portions without even realizing it. But using a smaller plate, like a salad plate, can help us maintain proper portion sizes. It’s a simple and effective way to stay mindful of how much food we are consuming.

Always Get Your Beauty Rest

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When life gets busy, sleep often gets sacrificed. But if you want to maintain your weight, research shows that sleep should be a top priority. Even on days when you are sleep-deprived and have to choose between more sleep or working out, an expert, Dr. Shemek suggests getting that extra sleep instead of hitting the gym.

Getting enough sleep is crucial for weight loss and preventing weight gain. Sleep deprivation can disrupt our appetite hormones, leading to poor appetite regulation. It can also make us crave high-calorie foods. Dr. Shemek reveals that without enough sleep, we won’t have the energy to exercise effectively.

Chew Your Food Thoroughly

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Chewing is often overlooked, but it plays a crucial role in digestion. When we chew our food properly, the enzymes in our saliva can break it down more effectively, making it easier for our food to digest. Asides that, chewing slowly and thoroughly can also increase the production of hormones linked to weight loss and help prevent overeating.

When we eat too quickly, we tend to consume more calories than we need before our brain has a chance to register that we are full. It takes about 20 minutes for our brain to send the signal that we are satisfied. An expert, O’Riordan explains that by taking the time to chew our food thoroughly and slow down during meals, we allow our body to recognize when we are satiated.

Experiment In The Kitchen

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Adding herbs and spices to our meals can make healthy eating exciting and flavorful. They enhance the taste of dishes without relying on excessive fat, making them just as satisfying. Studies suggest certain spicy veggies like chili peppers and jalapeños contain capsaicin, a compound that may boost metabolism and promote fat burning.

Adding a touch of smoked paprika, red pepper flakes, or cayenne to steamed broccoli can replace the need for butter and add a flavorful kick. And when it comes to roasted chicken breast, why settle for plain when you can sprinkle it with a mix of dried herbs, garlic powder, and chili flakes? Variety truly is the spice of life, making healthy eating exciting and delicious.

Make Sustainable Lifestyle Changes

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Healthy weight loss and weight maintenance are not about quick fixes or strict rules. The key is to focus on nourishing our bodies with healthy food and making sustainable lifestyle changes. By prioritizing our overall health and happiness, we can become fitter and healthier individuals. Let’s embrace a balanced approach and make long-lasting changes that we can consistently follow.

Maintaining a steady weight and achieving real, lasting changes is all about balance. By practicing mindful eating, incorporating resistance exercises and cardio into our routine, and nourishing our bodies with whole foods, we can take care of ourselves and see and feel the positive transformations. As Dr. Shemek wisely suggests, let’s treat ourselves with the same love and support we give to our loved ones.