Ways to help you lose weight
It is true that many people struggle to lose weight. With our society moving more and more towards sedentary office lifestyles and indulging in processed foods, it’s not hard to see the various factors at play that prevent people from losing weight. However, the flip side is that there are now more ways to lose weight than ever before.
Ultimately, losing weight always comes down to having the right balance of calories in and calories out. You can break down this simple concept in different ways. Some people become vegetarians, some say goodbye to carbs, and some become gym rats. Most people seek to balance the various aspects of weight loss in order to live a healthy life that they can maintain.
From perennial favorites (yes, you should drink more water) to new surprises (who knew about Mediterranean meal delivery plans?), here are nine ways to start managing your weight and health today.
1. Increase your daily water intake
Many people see water as a kind of “secret sauce” for weight loss. This will help you feel full and prevent you from packing extra calories when you’re not really hungry. Plus, water has many potential health benefits besides weight loss, including improved energy levels, better digestion, and increased physical performance. Simply put, water is the perfect companion throughout the day, so make your water bottle your best friend from now on.
2. Develop a consistent habit of physical activity
You don’t have to do Schwarzenegger lifts or Tour de France bike rides to be active. Physical activity is almost always good as long as it’s reasonably safe, so think about where you can work in your life by jogging, biking, or doing a quick set of push-ups. Even small amounts of physical activity count, so try walking around the block if you can’t do anything else. When combined with an improved diet and done consistently, these small steps can create big improvements over a period of time.
3. Make the Mediterranean diet part of your lifestyle
What is the Mediterranean diet? This is the antidote to fad diets. The Mediterranean dietary pattern has been studied for decades and has always been considered one of the best for preventing health problems. It focuses on fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins in moderate portions, with an emphasis on olive oil and other good fats. With its roots in Mediterranean food traditions, this diet also has tons of delicious recipes, including Mediterranean diet meal delivery kits that arrive at your door pre-portioned and ready to heat.
4. Find healthy snacks that you like and keep them handy
Most of us are snickers, so you want to make sure you have a healthy, delicious bite on hand when you’re craving something. Vegetables and fruits taste great when prepared properly. Try handing out carrot sticks and salsa or a plate of fruit for the next time you want to eat. Keep healthy snacks in an easily accessible place and “bad” snacks (if you have any) in a place where you have to do some work for them.
5. Try a vegetarian or low-meat diet
Eliminating or reducing meat consumption can ease your weight loss path. Many people worry that giving up meat will compromise their protein intake, but it doesn’t have to be. Plant proteins are abundant, from beans to avocados to nuts. New approaches, such as the flexitarian diet, have also become popular. Instead of strictly avoiding meat, the flexitarian diet forces you to eliminate most meat from your diet and replace it with plant-based foods.
6. Stay satisfied with lean protein and whole grains
It’s easier to avoid overeating when food helps keep you full and energized. That’s why lean protein and whole grains are staples of most weight loss plans. These foods give your body long-lasting energy because they break down more slowly and are more nutritious. Wondering what foods you should eat to be happy in the long run? Check out the satiety index, a metric that measures just that.
7. Watch your portion sizes
Extra-large portions are among the most common ways people inadvertently consume too many calories. Instead of doubling your portions, eat more slowly and savor your food. The previous tip about lean foods also comes into play here. Eating smaller portions of larger foods, such as lean protein, will always be better for your body and make you feel better than eating a large portion of junk food.
8. Give up sugary drinks
Speaking of hidden calories, sugary drinks are another of the worst offenders. Beverages like sodas and sweetened fruit juices will load you up with extra sugar and calories and won’t give you much in return. Just stick with water or unsweetened coffee or tea. Sports drinks can be fine when used to replenish your energy during a workout, but make sure you don’t sip them throughout the day, as most still contain tons of sugar.
9. Prepare your meals ahead of time
It’s so easy to reach for that frozen pizza when you get home from a long day at work and don’t feel like cooking. Instead, plan ahead by taking the time to prepare a large portion of healthy, tasty foods ahead of time and dividing them into quick grab-and-go containers. (#mealprepsunday is a popular trend on social media that might inspire you.) The easier it is for you to make healthy choices when you’re short on time, the better you can change your diet for better options.