Numerous diets that claim to help in weight loss are expensive, unsustainable, lack scientific support, and may do more harm than good to your health.
There isn’t a one-size-fits-all method for losing weight. Your existing behaviors, the amount of weight you want to reduce, and your long-term objectives will all have a big impact on how you approach the situation. But healthy eating is essential. No matter how much you exercise, it won’t be easy to lose weight if you don’t think carefully about what you’re putting in your body.
First of all, be realistic about timelines
There’s trying to lose weight fast and there’s losing weight for good, efficiently. A nuanced difference but a difference nonetheless.
As a rule of thumb (according to the experts and recent NHS guidance) safe weight loss is around 0.5 to 2 pounds per week, although this can change depending on how much you have to lose. The more you have, the quicker your initial rate of weight loss is likely to be although this will slow eventually.
Eat a balanced diet
If you want to reduce weight, you probably need to adjust your eating habits. Not only should you consume less calories, but you also need to be aware of your blood sugar, also known as blood glucose, levels.
No matter what you eat, a candy bar or a bag of baby carrots, your body converts it to glucose and releases it into the blood. Your pancreas then releases insulin, assisting your cells in absorbing glucose.
Your cells either instantly use the glucose that enters them for energy or store it as fat for later use. The main distinction between a candy bar and a baby carrot is how quickly the former is digested, which might cause a blood sugar rise.
According to research, when your blood sugar levels surge, your body will be overloaded with glucose and insulin, making it impossible for your cells to use all of it as fuel. This indicates that there is more leftover glucose that your cells will store as fat. As a result, eating processed, simple carbohydrates on a regular basis can easily result in weight gain by raising your blood sugar levels. Therefore, eating foods that you digest slowly is essential for weight management.
You should limit or cut sugar and processed carbs out of your diet. Processed foods are high in sodium, fat, calories, and sugar. They often contain fewer nutrients than whole foods. According to a preliminary research study, processed foods are much more likely than other foods to lead to addictive eating behaviors, which tend to result in people overeating.
Fiber and resistant starch are two types of complex carbs that you should include in your diet. Foods that are a good source of both include peas, lentils, beans, whole grains, and cold pasta.
Eat more vegetables. Vegetables are often considered some of the most weight-loss-friendly foods you can eat. They’re low in calories and high in fiber, which means you can eat a lot, feel full, and not spike your blood sugar levels. Leafy greens, especially, are loaded with essential vitamins and minerals. This can help reduce the risk of nutrient deficiencies, which can be a problem for restrictive diets.
Focus on healthy polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats that you can get from fish, seeds, and nuts.
Eat carbs, fats, and protein. By reducing your intake of fat or carbohydrates, you may lose weight faster. These limiting diets, however, are not long-term solutions. As a result, once you start eating fatty or carbohydrate-rich foods again, you’ll probably put the weight you lost back on. This can result in a harmful pattern of yo-yo dieting where you continually lose weight and gain it again, which can harm your heart and kidneys over the long term.
A person should eat more eggs, chicken, fish, lean meats, and beans. These foods are all high in protein and relatively low in fat. Lean proteins include:
- beans, peas, and lentils
- white poultry
- low-fat cottage cheese
Try intermittent fasting
A growing body of scientific research suggests that when you eat is as equally important for overall health as what you eat. This method where you only eat during a certain window of time each day is called intermittent fasting.
We prepared another article on this subject, so that you can have more in depth information about the best way for you to start intermittent fasting.
If you use food as a coping mechanism, like for stress, it can be extremely difficult to lose weight and can even lead to weight gain.
To stop emotional eating means overcoming the stress that triggers it. Some ways to overcome stress include:
Related to emotional eating is a more serious condition called binge eating. Binge eating is considered to be an eating disorder that requires specific treatment. Therefore, it’s important to determine if you have a binge eating disorder and then take the necessary steps to stop binge eating.
Also, there is a link between obesity and a lack of quality sleep. According to research, getting enough sleep can help you lose weight. Researchers discovered that women who reported having poor or fair sleep were less likely to successfully shed pounds than those who said they had extremely good sleep.