Find Dieting a Struggle? WELL mmm is on hand to offer you some simple and safe dieting tips to help you reach your personal goals
lose the salt
Sodium contributes to water retention, making you look and feel bloated.
Do you eat too much salt? Probably — the suggested daily intake is no more than 2,400 milligrams of sodium (or about one teaspoon), but most of us are getting more than twice that amount. So keep an eye on your sodium intake, and that doesn’t just mean ditching the saltshaker.
Hidden sources include soups, canned foods and drinks, salty snacks such as chips and pretzels and many prepackaged foods.
Buy a set of weights
It’s a one time investment you’ll never regret. Here’s why: Strength training builds lean muscle tissue, which burns more calories, at work or at rest 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The more lean muscle you have, the faster you’ll slim down. How do you start strength training? Try some push-ups or a few squats or lunges. Use your free weights to perform simple bicep curls or tricep pulls right in your home or office. Do these exercises three to four times per week, and you’ll soon see a rapid improvement in your physique.
Scientists now know that the body does not register liquid calories in the same way it does solid calories. Drinking a grande caffe mocha, for instance, won’t make you feel satiated the way eating a bowl of pasta will. Which means that although the caffe mocha actually has a greater number of calories than the pasta, you’re still more likely to want a second cup rather than another plate of linguine. So monitor your intake of juice, soda, coffee drinks and wine. If you consume one of each of those beverages during the day, you’ll have taken in at least 800 extra calories by night time.
Eat every meal
Skipping meals will not make you lose weight faster. That strategy backfires because your body thinks food is in short supply, so it slows your metabolism in order to conserve energy. Over time, the result is that when you do eat, even if you consume the same foods as always, your body will be slower to use the calories as fuel, thus creating a backlog of unwanted pounds. If a hectic day makes a sit-down meal impossible, stash an energy bar or a piece of fruit in your purse or briefcase – anything that will keep you from going hungry.
If you’re on a diet, you’re probably already working out a couple of times a week. Whether you exercise or not, you can further enhance weightloss by doing a little something extra each day. Take the stairs instead of the elevator; walk to the bus, train, or all the way to the office; window-shop with your best friend rather than sit over coffee. Taking the dog out, gardening and even housework all increase the number of calories you expend. You don’t have to go for a jog to speed up weight loss. Twenty minutes of moderate exercise a day means you’ll burn approximately 700 calories extra per week.
H20, H20, H20
You’ve heard it before, and you’ll hear it again. That’s because drinking 64 ounces of water daily is one of the easiest ways to speed up weight loss. Your body needs water in order to efficiently metabolize stored fat. When you shortchange your supply, you’re likely to slow down that process, meaning it’s more difficult for you to burn calories. An easy eight glasses a day (at least!) will keep your system running smoothly.
Angelo Tremblay, Ph.D., Director of the division of kinesiology at Laval University, in Canada, found that eating hot peppers can boost a person’s basal metabolism (the total calories the body burns at rest). The reason? Capsaicin, a compound found in jalapeno and cayenne peppers, may increase your body’s release of stress hormones such as adrenaline, which can speed up your metabolism and your ability to burn calories. What’s more, eating hot peppers may reduce your appetite, Tremblay says, helping to curb your cravings. So spice up your stir-fried vegetables, eat low-calorie chilli or salsa, try them on salads and baked potatoes, and watch the pounds come off faster.
Get some sleep
As funny as it sounds, sleep deprivation may make you fat and not just because you’re susceptible to cases of the late-night munchies (although there’s that too). Women who get less than four hours of sleep per night have a slower metabolism than those who snooze for a full eight hours. So don’t skimp on your sleep, and you’ll be rewarded with an extra edge when it comes to shedding pounds quickly.
Don’t get us wrong, exercising at any time is good for you. But evening activity may be particularly beneficial because many people’s metabolism slows down toward the end of the day. Thirty minutes of aerobic activity before dinner increases your metabolic rate and may keep it elevated for another two or three hours, even after you’ve stopped moving. What this means for you: those dinner calories have less of a chance to take up permanent residence on your hips.
Don’t go for the gimmicks
At any given time, there are dozens of weight-loss hypes in the marketplace that claim to have the ability to take off 10 pounds in 10 days, or more.
Desperation can tempt us to try anything, but we all know these schemes don’t work. Save your money, but more importantly, save yourself from the emotional pain when these gimmicks fail.
Be realistic. Jump-start your weight-loss programme in ways that make sense, and not only will you be thinner, you’ll be happier too. mmm