The best way to lose weight is to adopt a healthy eating style that works for you. Choose whole foods like lean proteins, vegetables and whole grains. Add moderate amounts of healthy fats (like those in avocado, olives, nuts and seeds) to help keep you feeling full.
Make gradual changes to your diet and exercise habits.
1. Eat a Healthy Diet
Eating healthy is key to losing weight and keeping it off. It’s important to include foods from all major food groups and limit the amount of calories you eat.
Choose lean proteins, whole grains, low-fat dairy and fruits and vegetables that are rich in nutrients. Limit fried foods, salt and added sugars.
Try to eat meals at regular times and avoid skipping meals. It is also helpful to eat small, healthy snacks throughout the day.
Keep a journal or use an app to track your daily calorie intake. Studies show that people who write down what they eat are more likely to stick with their diet plan. Try to start with just one or two small changes, such as drinking water instead of soda or eating a veggie with every meal.
2. Exercise Regularly
When you exercise regularly, your body expends more energy than you take in, burning calories. This is known as creating a calorie deficit, and it’s necessary for weight loss. The best way to lose weight is through a combination of diet and exercise.
Regular physical activity increases healthy HDL cholesterol and decreases unhealthy triglycerides, decreasing your risk of heart disease and high blood pressure. It’s recommended to get at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity each week, as well as strength training 2 to 4 times per week. If you’re new to exercising, start by warming up with dynamic stretches before starting your workout and then slowly build up your intensity. Be sure to include a mix of exercises, like running, biking and swimming, as well as more strenuous exercises like lunges or lifting weights.
3. Get a Good Night’s Sleep
Getting the right amount of sleep is crucial for weight loss because it boosts metabolism and helps to keep hunger hormones in check. Studies also show that sleeping on a regular schedule can help to promote healthy body weight.
Try to get a minimum of seven hours of sleep per night and stick to a consistent sleep schedule every day. Having a light snack before bed can help to suppress appetite and keep blood sugar levels stable overnight. Peanut butter, almond butter, and cottage cheese are great options before bed because they contain tryptophan, a key ingredient for restful sleep.
4. Drink Plenty of Water
Drinking plenty of water is essential when trying to lose weight. It can help suppress appetite, boost metabolism and make exercise more effective.
It also helps to improve satiety, and decrease BMI, as well as increase insulin sensitivity. Aim to drink a glass of water 20-30 minutes before and after each meal. This can help to reduce overeating, as it often mistakenly misidentifies thirst with hunger.
It can be challenging to meet daily water intake goals. To help you do this, try using a water bottle with built in tracker, setting reminders or making it a habit. Also, try adding more liquid-rich foods like soups and smoothies to your diet. These will give you the benefits of water with added dietary fibre and flavour.
5. Set Realistic Goals
Setting realistic goals can help you stay on track when trying to lose weight. The first step is to decide how much weight you want to lose, which can be difficult without assessing your current state of health. Generally, clinicians recommend a goal of five to 10 percent of your initial body weight to lower your risk for health conditions like heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
Next, think about why you want to lose weight. This can be a good reminder when you’re feeling tempted to make unhealthy choices. Consider writing down your reasons and posting them in a visible place.
Finally, set a goal that is specific, measurable, attainable, and time-bound. Be sure to incorporate process and outcome goals, such as “walking for 30 minutes daily,” and “losing 10 pounds.” Breaking your long-term goal down into smaller, short-term goals can also make it more attainable.