Losing weight requires you to change your lifestyle and not just habits. You could lose weight fast by doing unreasonable amount of workout and eating inadequate amount of calories. But you would also gain back in few weeks if you don’t acquire it in your routine. These are the important things that needs to be kept in mind to lose weight in a healthy way:
1. Calorie Deficit
Weight loss = Calorie Deficit. The more calorie deficit you are in, the more weight you would lose. It doesn’t matter if you ate pizza or cake, but as long as you are hitting your daily calorie goal, you are good.
Count your calories. You can use any smartphone app to count your daily calories. It helps a lot.
Typically 3,500 calories equals about 1 pound. So if your body requires 2200 calories and you are eating 1200 calories a day i.e. a calorie deficit of 1000 calories. You would lose
1 week = 7 days
1000*7 = 7000 calories
7000 calories = 2 pounds in a week
You can only follow one of these two approaches to lose weight.
- Burn more calories than you consume: Create a lifestyle where you burn 7700 extra calories every week so that you can lose 1 kg fat/weight a week.
- Consume less calories than you burn: Create a lifestyle where you consume 7700 less calories than you burn every week so that you can lose 1 kg fat/weight a week.
- Drink 2 litres of water everyday for weight loss and to maintain an ideal weight. You might need to drink more water if you exercise a lot or sweat heavily.
- Drink water a half hour before meals and not during the meal. One study showed that drinking water a half hour before meals increased weight loss by 44% over 3 months.
3. Avoid sugary drinks and processed food
Heavily processed foods cause overeating and weight gain. These are the most fattening things you can put into your body, and avoiding them can help you lose weight. People eating ultra-processed foods ate more calories and gained more weight than when they ate a minimally processed diet, according to results from a National Institutes of Health study. The difference occurred even though meals provided to the volunteers in both the ultra-processed and minimally processed diets had the same number of calories and macronutrients.
You cannot avoid fast food altogether, it’s tough. But you can minimise it. If you are eating processed food daily, reduce it to thrice a week and then to once a week and so on. You will soon realise you don’t crave for it as much as before.
4. Choose weight loss-friendly foods
Certain foods are very useful for losing fat. Studies show that soluble fibres may reduce fat, especially in the belly area. Base most of your diet on whole foods. They are healthier, more filling and much less likely to cause overeating. Some of the weight loss friendly foods are:
- Leafy Greens like kale, spinach, collards, Swiss chards and a few others.
- Cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage and sprouts. They’re high in fibre and tend to be incredibly filling.
- Avocados are a unique fruit. While most fruits are high in carbs, avocados are loaded with healthy fats.
- Apple Cider Vinegar is incredibly popular in the natural health community. Some people dilute it in water and drink it.
- Nuts despite being high in fat are not as fattening as you would expect. They’re an excellent snack, containing balanced amounts of protein, fibre and healthy fats.
5. Drink coffee or tea
If you’re a coffee or tea drinker, then drink as much as you want as the caffeine in them boost your metabolism by 3–11%.
In the short term, caffeine can boost the metabolic rate and increase fat burning, but after a while people become tolerant to the effects and it stops working. But even if coffee doesn’t make you expend more calories in the long term, there is still a possibility that it blunts appetite and helps you eat less.
6. Intermittent fasting
There are several different ways of doing intermittent fasting — all of which involve splitting the day or week into eating and fasting periods.These are the most popular methods:
- The 16/8 method: It involves skipping breakfast and restricting your daily eating period to 8 hours, such as 1–9 p.m. Then you fast for 16 hours in between.
- Eat-Stop-Eat: This involves fasting for 24 hours, once or twice a week, for example by not eating from dinner one day until dinner the next day.
Intermittent fasting has been observed to cause an increase in the Human Growth Hormone (HGH) as much as five times over.
Also known as growth hormone (GH), HGH plays a key role in growth, body composition, cell repair and metabolism. HGH also boosts muscle growth, strength and exercise performance, while helping you recover from injury and disease
7. Cardio and weight training
Cardio and weight training will help you reach your calorie goal besides other health benefits. Say your daily requirement is 2200 calories and you are eating 1800 calories a day and burning 600 calories by working out. So you meet your daily calorie deficit of 1000 calories (1800 – 600 = 1200; 2200 – 1200 = 1000).
Go to the gym 3–4 times a week. Do a warm-up: Treadmill, Elliptical, Crossfit and lift some weights. By lifting weights, you will burn lots of calories and prevent your metabolism from slowing down, which is a common side effect of losing weight.
Prefer doing Cardio after weight training.
8. Good Habits
- Eat your food slowly.Fast eaters gain more weight over time. Eating slowly makes you feel more full and boosts weight-reducing hormones.
- Weigh yourself regularly to check your progress.
- Get a good night’s sleep, every night.
- Walk 10,000 steps per day.
- Eat food with varying calories.
- Use small plates.
- Drink warm lemon water in the morning. Lemons are high in pectin fibre, which could help fight hunger cravings.
- Have a cheat day, once in a week or fortnight to satisfy your cravings.
9. Swap Refined Carbs for Veggies
The simple carbs in white rice, spaghetti, and sandwich rolls can “wreak havoc on your weight because they’re digested very quickly, leaving you hungry and more likely to overeat later,” says Jana Klauer, M.D., author of The Park Avenue Nutritionist’s Plan.
Instead of replacing these foods with healthier whole-grain bread products, which contain filling fibers that can sometimes trigger bloating, sub in vegetables for the week: Instead of rice, try cauliflower “rice” made by grating cauliflower.