Being on a weight loss program is not a walk in the park. You may experience diet fatigue or feel unhappy about being unable to eat certain foods that have been declared off the limits. Here’s some good news, you can actually shed weight without dieting.
Before you get too excited, this is not to say that it does not require some work on your part. Losing weight has never been an easy feat. The alternatives we will discuss in this post require that you imbibe some healthy habits around eating and meal portions to gradually meet your body goals over time. It’s still good news because you don’t have to completely steer clear of certain things or be on some rigorous diet plan. It’s just another kind of discipline altogether.
Chew for longer
Chewing food thoroughly before swallowing is associated with lesser food intake. For one thing, it helps you eat more slowly. In a preliminary study, it was discovered that chewing until there were no more lumps increased the number of burnt calories that occur in the body during digestion.
It was estimated that the body burns 10 extra calories for a 300-calorie meal. Slow eaters gain less weight. On the flip side, eating fast hardly burns calories. In Fact, it has been linked to a 35% increase in a person’s risk for metabolic syndrome that includes high blood pressure, blood sugar, excess abdominal fat, and poor cholesterol numbers. Start eating slowly by counting how many times you chew each bite.
Smaller Meal Portions
If you can work on your meal portions, you have successfully halved your weight problems.
Using smaller plates can help you eat smaller portions of food at a time. A bigger plate tends to make your serving look rather small which leads you to add more until you think it’s large enough. Only by that time, you have already added more than enough without realizing it. It leads you to consume more than you should.
Smaller plates make servings look big and make you believe that you have served just enough, which is better for your body goals. So how can you exploit this illusion? Serve healthier meals on bigger plates and less healthy meals on smaller plates.
The protein and fiber trick
Prioritize protein meals to help you feel full for longer. One study revealed that increasing protein intake between 15 % to 30% of calories caused people to eat 44 % fewer calories per day. Their calorie intake dropped by 441 calories per day, and they lost 11 pounds over 12 weeks on average without intentionally cutting back on food.
Participants who had eggs for breakfast consumed fewer calories in the course of the day when compared to those who had a grain-based breakfast. This is only possible because high protein intake is capable of increasing the hormone responsible for reducing appetite – satiety LP-1, cholecystokinin, and peptide YY. It also reduces the level of a hunger hormone called ghrelin.
Similarly, with fiber-rich foods, you can feel fuller for longer. Specifically, viscous fiber is healthy for weight loss, increases fullness, and reduces appetite. Once you have a reduced appetite, it is much easier to control your calorie intake. The study suggests that fiber has a good impact on belly fat.
You should look out for the following under this category: greek yogurt, milk, beans, broccoli, legumes, oats, turkey breasts, and tuna.
Drink more water and other healthy drinks
Especially before meals, drinking lots of water reduces hunger which lessens your calorie intake. In a study, those who drank lots of water lost at least 44% more weight. Give yourselves more reason to drink water by replacing soda and juice with water. If you would rather not have water, consume healthier drinks like vegetable juice and smoothies. Avoid sugary drinks because they are associated with an increased risk of weight gain and many diseases.
Store unhealthy food in hidden places
The eyes activate the brain. We always desire foods that are calorie-packed per bite and unhealthy for us. And seeing them doesn’t help one bit. Ever worked into a pie or doughnut shop to grab some coffee but the sight of savory pastry makes you rethink your original plan?
Yes, seeing unhealthy food can increase your cravings and make you increase calorie intake. According to a comparative study, the presence of fruit on kitchen counters was linked to lower BMI, while the presence of candy and soft drinks on kitchen counters was associated with a weight difference ranging from 9.4-14.4kg.
This result indicates that you can prevent unhealthy cravings by keeping unhealthy food out of sight. Cultivate the habit of putting them in closets and cupboards. Wrap them in tin foils or place them in opaque containers before placing them on the bottom shelf of the fridge. Healthy foods like fruits and veggies, on the other hand, should be placed on countertops, center, and in front of the fridge.
Eat without distractions
Focusing on your meal can impact the quantity of food you consume. Attentive eaters are better able to influence their food consumption. If you are distracted while having a meal, you tend to overeat.
Distracted people, according to a study, ate 10% more in one sitting. Avoid watching TV, playing video games, being on your computer, and reading while eating. Eating time should be exclusively for eating.
Sleep and avoid stress
Stress disrupts leptin and ghrelin, the hormones responsible for appetite decrease and increase respectively. Cortisol level rises when you are stressed. Fluctuations in hormones can lead to hormonal disruptions, which increase hunger and cravings for unhealthy food leading you to consume more calories.
Stress because of high cortisol levels can make you feel hungry even when you are not really hungry. It makes you turn to food to help you cope and leads you to stress eating. In most cases, your cravings at this point aren’t vegetables or some tasty beans. Guess what? You crave sugary, junk, salty and fatty food.
According to ofnoah.sg, overweight people are prone to stress-weight gain because of their already high insulin level. To avoid mindless eating, you need to reduce your stress levels by relaxing more. Sleeping more isn’t as bad as people may think. A lack of sleep can also change hormones because it ultimately leads to stress.
Studies show that people who do not get enough sleep tend to opt for foods high in calories and carbs. Another study suggests that adults who sleep for less than 6 hours of sleep at night are more likely to be obese than those who get adequate sleep. To better cope with stress, find out how to get more sleep.
Never Skip breakfast
Some studies show that more than 75% of people who lose more than 30 pounds and maintain that weight eat breakfast every day. A healthy breakfast helps to keep your appetite in check. You are more likely to eat a healthy meal at home than when you are famished, and busy later in the day. You are more likely to crave fast unhealthy food under such stressful circumstances. When this becomes a habit, your weight and health suffer.
Mind your plate color
Mindful eating also means that you choose the color of the plate where you serve your meal. Higher contrast in colors between the plate and the food can help you eat less. So, dark-colored food should be served on or eaten from a light-colored plate and vice versa.
So, a meal like white rice should be eaten on a blue-colored plate or any other dark-colored plate. A study in the Journal of Consumer Research found that when people use a dish with highly contrasting colors, they dish about 21% less.
Eat healthier snacks
Snacking is sometimes inevitable. There’s always a need to chew something in between meals. It’s a part of our daily eating habits. Infact, a research from 2016 says that about one-third of people’s daily energy intake is from snacking. Snacks keep us energized and fill our hunger before main meals. However, snacks do not have to be junk. We sometimes think of snacks as pastry and flour but snacks can be much more. Pick snacks that can make you feel full for longer and reduce your calorie intake. Some healthy snacks to indulge include:
- Unsalted nuts and seeds and their butters.
- Whole grain bread
- Lower fat yogurt
- Lower fat cheese
- Frozen fruits
- Boiled eggs
If you opt for the right kind of snacks they can be a source of important nutrients and support good health.
Consume more vitamin D
Some research has linked an individual’s Vitamin D blood level with obesity. According to the research people with low vitamin D levels have a high likelihood of being obese. Additionally Vitamin deficiency can lead to other health issues including metabolic syndrome and diabetes. Sources of vitamin D include egg yolks, oily fish, mushrooms,liver, red meat, fortified foods like breakfast cereal. Vitamin D supplements are likewise available. The sun is a good source of vitamin D. exposing your skin to the sun at noon is one way to get vitamin D inside you. Ideally, you should consume 10 micrograms or 40 international units (IU) of Vitamin D every day.
Probiotics are healthy bacteria that have been found to prevent and manage obesity. There are over- the-counter (OTC) probiotics in pharmacies and online platforms. Some foods and drinks are also good sources of probiotics. Natural sources of probiotic include:
- Sourdough bread.
- Cottage cheese
Habits make us. Imbibing good habits like the ones outlined in this piece can yield accumulated benefits that impact your weight positively. Healthful lifestyle changes also include exercising. Without leaving your house, body weight exercises can help you tone your entire body. There are no more excuses. Start today to achieve your fitness and body goals to stay in shape.