In today’s world, people have started getting conscious about their body weight and have been making efforts towards leading a healthier lifestyle. But are we going in the right direction? Are we making right and healthy choices? The answers are vague and confusing. Here we shall know what are the guidelines that we need to consider for a safe and healthy weight loss. It is sometimes difficult to maintain a healthy body weight, but it is tougher to lose weight.
By choosing the food smartly, bringing a change in the lifestyle and making the right choices we can lose weight efficiently and will also be able to keep up with the healthy weight loss thus improving our approach, and enhancing our confidence.
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Few Basic But Very Important Tips to Remember Before Going for a Weight Loss
There is no particular universal agenda or plan that we can follow for a weight loss. Every individual needs to go through weight loss in their own way that is suitable for them.
Set a goal before you start the weight loss program.
The thought of “I need to fit into a dress for a wedding” is not that effective as the thought like “I need to lose weight for my family” or “I need to lose weight because I want to feel nice”. These goals will actually motivate you and keeps you in action. Prefer to set long-term goals rather than short-term goals.
A healthy weight loss is successfully achieved with lifestyle changes and not by the short term extremely restricted diets. Weight loss should always be permanent, by substituting high caloric foods with healthier alternatives, reducing the portion of food gradually and being physically active.
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You need some accessories for your healthy weight loss programs. Maintain a small notebook or journal, weigh yourself regularly and keep a check on the each kg or inch lost. This will always keep you motivated and on the toes.
Have patience. Always aim at losing one or two pounds a week. Losing weight too fast can make you sick and drained and will not be effectively maintained in the long run.
Few Important Guidelines to Healthy Weight Loss
- Never rely on shortcuts or fad diets or pills to lose weight. Weight can always be lost by planning our calories and food wisely.
- Deleting an entire food group is a major mistake that the dieters do.
- Incorporating a diet plan in which the major essential nutrients like carbohydrates or even fats are totally chucked out is totally impractical as well as dangerous.
- Moderation is always the key towards a disciplined weight loss. Removal of macronutrients can make a person tired and deprived and he or she may not feel encouraged to continue the diet plan.
- We may not be able to maintain our weight if the calories are severely restricted. Especially when we are eating out, it becomes a difficult task of what food to eat. Select those foods that are healthy like wheat-based bread, salads with low-fat dips or grilled vegetables.
- Never compare: “Hey, she is losing weight faster than me” or “Look at the model in the T.V. She has come back to shape within few days”, these few thoughts can actually demotivate you. Every individual has varied pattern of losing weight. It is fine. You just need to be patient.
- Avoid eating when you are emotionally low or stressed or lonely: Emotional eating can be a hindrance in weight loss. When you are emotionally low or lonely, try healthier options like yoga or meditation or just listen to light music. Never rely on food as a medium for providing comfort or relieving stress.
- Pay attention to what you eat. Never eat mindlessly. Avoid eating food while watching television, driving or working. Concentrate on your food and relish each and every bite of it. Just stop eating before your stomach becomes full.
- Let’s choose food wisely: A few changes here and there can bring a big difference in the weight. We need to reduce calories but that doesn’t mean we need to cut down on the food drastically. One of the important principles that I follow is to have a fixed quantity in my plate. If I am having two riots (wheat breads) and vegetable curry, I don’t increase the number of chapattis or curry beyond that even if I loved the taste.
- Increase the intake of fibre in your diet: Fibre adds bulk to your diet. It remains in the stomach for a longer period of time and provides a feeling of fullness that will stay for longer duration thus helping us to eat less. High fibre foods are found in fruits and vegetables which tend to be low in calories, thus by adding fibre in our diet, we can cut down on our calories. So much being told about fibre, now how do we incorporate fibre in our diet.
- Start your day with healthy breakfast. Substitute sugary cornflakes with milk to all bran flakes with the addition of fresh fruits. Here I am giving few ideas for healthy breakfast!
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- Have a fruit instead of a dessert. Rather than tempting for sweets or dessert after a meal, prefer to eat a piece of fruit. Have low-fat yogurt that are topped with fresh fruit cuts or have a fruit salad.
- Eat a fruit instead of a fruit juice.
- Prepare soups without straining. Vegetable soups can be made without straining otherwise it can remove the fibre in it. Just put the boiled vegetables in the mixer and mix it till it becomes a fine liquid. To add to the fibre content, sauté boiled kidney beans or black beans and precut fresh vegetable into the soup. It tends to be very filling.
- Substitute white pasta, bread or rice with whole wheat pasta, brown bread and brown rice. Even while baking cakes or pies, substitute almost half the quantity of refined flour with whole wheat or unprocessed wheat bran. Prepare the white sauce with whole wheat rather than refined flour.
- Pasta can be more diet friendly if we add less of noodles and more of veggies. Sandwiches can be made healthier by adding lettuce, cucumber, tomatoes rather than cheese and meat on the brown bread.
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Make Changes in Your Cooking Methods for Healthy Weight Loss
- Prefer vegetable that are raw or steamed or to the maximum sautéed. Avoid fried foods. To add to the taste, you can always add a dash of lemon juice and herbs or garnish with a little amount of cheese or olive oil.
I normally tend to bake my cutlets or vadaas rather than deep frying or even shallow frying it. In this way we can cut down on our fat intake. A bowl of sprouted salad with veggies and dash of green chutney(or dip) is always a healthier option than a bowl of chips or cookies.
Healthy lifestyle is Necessary for Fast Yet Natural Weight Loss
Apart from dieting, a healthy lifestyle change can act as a support for the changes in the diet.
1. Do plenty of exercises
Preferably do exercise that you enjoy so that it can be done regularly. Walking, swimming, cycling, using the treadmill, jogging, doing sit ups and squats are some of the physical exercises.
2. Healthy lifestyle habits
Walking or using the cycle to go for work or running some errands, using the stairs instead of the lift and parking your vehicle far off from the destination and walking the remaining path.
3. Drink plenty of water for weight loss
Water acts as an accessory to healthy weight loss. Staying hydrated can help you avoid overeating. But have water and not soda, alcohol or aerated drinks.
4. Have proper sleep
Lack of sleep can be associated with weight gain. Lack of sleep can increase the levels of the hormone Ghrelin which stimulates the appetite and you may want to eat more than normal levels. Hence try to get a proper eight hours of quality sleep.
So much said and done, does that mean we will have to forget our favourite treats? Of course not. Combine high caloric or favourite treats with healthier options like have a small portion of ice cream with fruits or have your favourite chips with carrot or cucumber pieces. Condition your mind to eat your treats at a particular time so that you don’t get obsessed.
Hence with the given guidelines to healthy weight loss, discipline, direction and few changes in our choices of food, the fast and natural weight loss can be done successfully without hampering our health.