Are you looking for some good advice on ways to lose weight? Then this article is for you.
2017 is here folks. It hard to fathom how quickly time has flown past us.
Another year gone. A few kilos gained.
Weight gain is a problem, both physically and emotionally. In India, a large proportion of our population is obese. We enjoy eating out, gorge on sweets during festivals, and barely get time to exercise due to our busy work schedules.
The problem with being overweight is that it brings with it many health problems. The worrying ones include diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke and bone disease. Other problems like excessive sweating, hair loss and fatigue can be quite annoying.
We have listed for you 7 proven ways you can lose weight in a healthy and safe manner. Before we start, if you are looking for ways to lose weight fast, then this article is not for you. There is no quick fix. Weight loss takes time.
7 Ways To Lose Weight In 2017
#1 Get Off The Couch!
Yes, this is the most obvious one. If you are going to laze around all day, then weight gain is inevitable.
If you are looking to lose weight, then it is time you embarked on an exercise program.
Exercise can be any kind – walking, jogging, swimming, cycling, yoga – anything you wish. Just go out and do it!
It has been clinically proven that exercise reduces weight. However, if you want to see the true benefits, you must combine it with a good dietary plan. If you still enjoy the foods you used to do when you were overweight, any amount of exercise will be futile in your weight loss efforts.
#2 Add Weight Training To Your Cardio Routine
If you have started some form of aerobic activity, then make sure you start with some weight training as well. It is one of the more efficient ways to lose weight.
But first, make sure you get the ”all clear” from your doctor. There are certain medical conditions where weight training should be avoided, and your doctor will be able to guide you regarding that.
When we talk about weight training, we are not talking about attempting to be the next Mr Olympia. We are talking about light weights that can exercise the muscles and keep them healthy.
Clinical studies have shown that combining weight training with your normal aerobic exercise routine can lead to a greater degree of weight loss than aerobic exercise alone.
Exercise can break down muscle tissues along with fat, and sometimes the weight loss is due to both muscle and fat loss.
But you don’t want to lose muscle mass. Adding weight training to your routine can help keep those muscles healthy and strong.
#3 Eat More Protein
Consuming foods that are high in protein have been shown to increase stomach fullness and reduce snacking.
Snacking is the main culprit in weight gain. You may notice that when we snack, we prefer to eat junk foods such as salted crisps, biscuits and namkeens.
These are packed with calories, salt and unhealthy oils. Regular consumption leads to weight gain.
Instead, try and consume a high protein snack. Better yet, incorporate a good amount of protein in each of your meals.
Proteins can be vegetarian sourced or non-vegetarian sourced. Good sources of protein are listed in the table below.
There is a point that you need to remember. Too much of protein can cause weight gain. And it is not just muscle – you could also put on body fat, especially if you do not exercise.
The currently recommended amount of protein to stay healthy is 1mg/kg body weight. In other words, if you weigh 60 kg, then you must eat 60 gm of protein per day.
Make sure you consume a high quality protein source such as soya or eggs (whites), as these are completely absorbed by the body after digestion.
Alternatively, if you cannot consume sufficient amounts through diet, you can obtain it through a supplement. You could try our recommended supplement here.
#4 Be Calorie Conscious
When the food we eat is digested, it releases calories. Calories describes the amount of energy that is released after food breaks down.
For example, carbohydrates break down and release 4 kilocalories and fats release 9 kilocalories.
Calories get converted to fat if excess is produced. The more amount of fatty foods you eat, the greater the amount of calories released and greater the amount of weight gained.
Become calorie conscious. Make an attempt to calculate how many calories you eat in a day. The average man needs around 2500 kcal per day, while the average woman needs 2000 kcal per day.
Caloric requirement goes up depending on the level of activity. For example, if you are a sportsperson or an athlete, you will require more calories.
If you lead a sedentary life, you will need fewer calories. Any excess that you consume will be converted to body fat and you will put on weight.
It is simple to find out how many calories you are consuming. Just download any of the apps and you should be able to get an estimate of how much you are eating every day.
#5 Eat More Fiber
Fiber has ”stomach filling” properties, and helps you snack less. A high fiber diet is a great way to lose weight.
There are 2 kinds of fiber that are present in the diet – soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber is the best kind as it not only helps you with weight loss; it also helps reduce your cholesterol levels and blood sugar levels.
Related article – Soluble Fiber: A Secret To A Good Heart
Insoluble fiber helps relieve constipation by adding bulk to the stools.
There are many natural sources of fiber, though soluble fiber is hard to find. Common sources include legumes, certain fruits, oats, flaxseeds and bran.
If you are unable to get sufficient amount of fiber in the diet, then try out our recommended soluble fiber supplement here.
#6 Take A Probiotic
Over the last decade or so, probiotics have become very popular. They are now readily available in supermarkets under different brand names. They are also available as prescription medicine.
The main ingredient in probiotics is lactobacillus, a gut friendly bacteria.
There are some clinical studies that suggest regular probiotic use may be useful in aiding digestion. Better digestion means better delivery of nutrients to the muscles and vital tissues.
If you overeat, you thwart the process of nutrient absorption by killing all the good bacteria and allowing bad ones to grow. The bad bacteria release harmful toxins into the blood stream. These harmful toxins can cause inflammation, which in turn leads to obesity through a cascade of events.
According to a study published in the journal Obesity, supplementation with a probiotic agent VSL#3 aided weight loss and reduced fat gain in subjects compared to placebo. VSL#3 is available in India on prescription by your doctor.
#7 Use A Smaller Plate
Yes, using a smaller plate is one of the ways to lose weight.
While this may sound a little odd, people who use smaller plates for their meals tend to reduce their food portion size.
Over time, this leads to weight loss on account of lesser food consumed.
This phenomenon is called the Delboeuf Illusion.
The effect of a plate size is purely psychological. If you are aware that you are putting on weight and wish to lose it, then you would eat lesser food regardless of how big your plate is.
Nevertheless, this is a test worth trying out. Just bear in mind that you are doing it to lose weight.
It goes without saying that eating plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables is essential if you are looking for ways to lose weight.
While non-vegetarian food is not a bad option, avoid red meat if possible. If you do need to eat non-vegetarian foods, stick with lean meat like chicken and fish.
Don’t fry; steam them or use them in soups.
Losing weight does not have to be hard. It does however need dedication and time. Quick fix solutions and just dieting alone are not ways to lose weight.
Don’t expect miracles if you are looking for simple ways to lose weight. Instead, follow a structured exercise program and use the advice given in this article.
Put them together and you have a winning formula!