Why do you want to lose weight? Do you want to feel healthier? Look better? Control diabetes and lower high blood pressure? All of these reasons are important, but it’s not enough to simply know your goals—you need to do something about them. With that in mind, here are 18 weight loss tips to help you achieve your goals and start living healthier.
1) Eat Right
A critical aspect of weight loss is understanding how different foods impact your body. In fact, if you are looking to drop pounds, it is essential that you choose healthier options for every meal and snack. One of these weight loss tips to lose weight is to eat a better diet; you should avoid overly processed foods such as those found in fast food joints and convenience stores.
There’s a lot of trickery when it comes to these types of foods (for example, some contain more than one serving size), meaning you can end up consuming more calories without even realizing it. If you’re looking for healthy alternatives, opt for fresh fruits and vegetables instead. Fresh produce is naturally low in fat but filled with fiber—meaning fewer calories!
2) Exercise Regularly
Exercise makes you lose weight. But even if it didn’t, exercise is still a necessary part of a healthy lifestyle. Whether you’re trying to drop some weight or just improve your general health, exercise is an important piece of any diet plan. At its most basic level, it works like this: Exercise burns calories; burning calories leads to weight loss; losing weight improves your health and will make you feel better overall. That’s why regular exercise should be included in any serious diet plan—whether it’s meant to help with weight loss or not.
3) Try Not to Vary Your Calories Too Much
It’s important to eat roughly the same amount of calories every day if you’re trying to lose weight. As a general rule, women need about 1,800 calories per day, while men should consume 2,500. Because your body adapts to whatever daily calorie intake you maintain over time, it can be difficult to lose weight by cutting calories significantly for short periods of time.
For example, if you cut 200 calories from your typical diet (most people do about 15 percent), you may see some quick results at first, but after a week or two, your body will likely adjust and demand more food to maintain its accustomed number of calories per day.
4) Try Not to Eat Out Too Often
Unless you’re only eating at home and preparing your own meals, it’s easy to over-consume calories when dining out. One reason is that restaurants serve huge portions that are hard to match at home. Even worse, restaurant food has a tendency to be loaded with fat and sodium. It can be easy to lose track of how many servings you’ve already eaten.
The best way to fight weight gain from eating out is by keeping track of what you eat when dining out. Simply counting calories isn’t enough; make sure you know exactly what those calories are made up of (including fat and sodium). You’ll likely find that even small changes can add up quickly!
5) Stay Hydrated
Dehydration slows down your metabolism, making it more difficult to burn calories and fat. It also makes you hungry—dehydration causes low blood sugar, which leads to cravings for sugary foods and energy drinks. Drink plenty of water; if you don’t feel like you’re urinating enough, that means you need more H2O. Some people recommend monitoring your urine color to help make sure you’re staying hydrated. (Dark yellow urine is a good indicator that things are fine.) Keep in mind that everyone has a different kidney function and diet; check with your doctor or dietitian if you have questions about how much fluid is right for you.
6) Know Which Foods Help You Lose Weight
While everyone has a different diet, one thing is certain: not all foods are created equal. Some actually promote weight loss and others simply aren’t worth your time. If you’re trying to lose weight, remember that some foods can help you reach your goals while others can stand in your way.
In order to lose weight safely and effectively, you should avoid these foods: processed meats (like bacon and hot dogs), refined grains (like white bread), trans fats (found in margarine), high-sugar fruits, canned soups with trans fats, vegetable oils and more! On top of avoiding these unhealthy foods, there are also plenty of diet tips for losing weight that can actually benefit your health as well as help you slim down.
7) Get Enough Sleep
Getting enough sleep is essential to keep your immune system in top shape. It’s when our bodies are most able to fight off colds and infections.
Lack of sleep weakens our defence mechanisms, making us more susceptible to illness. And weight loss suffers, too: Studies show that getting an average of 5 hours less per night results in an average weight gain of 1 pound per month for women and 1.5 pounds for men because of changes in hormone production, like a decrease in leptin (the appetite-suppressing hormone) and a rise in ghrelin (the hunger-stimulating hormone).
8) Cut Down on Alcoholic Drinks and Sugary Drinks
Cutting back on alcoholic drinks and sugary drinks can make a huge difference when it comes to losing weight. Remember, calories from beverages have no nutritional value whatsoever. It’s best to drink water or tea instead of juice, soda or other sugary drinks whenever possible. Additionally, alcohol contains many empty calories that add up quickly in your diet. Limit yourself to one drink per day if you want to lose weight safely and quickly.
9) Pay Attention to Cravings
If you’re on a diet and start craving sugar, it’s time to pause and ask yourself why. Maybe your diet is lacking in protein? Maybe you need more healthy fats? Maybe your body is trying to tell you that you’re dehydrated or you need vitamins? Stop giving into cravings, and pay attention to what your body needs.
10) Set Goals/Track Progress/Reward Yourself
We’ve all heard of weight loss challenges that require people to keep a certain number of pounds off for a set amount of time in order to win some huge prize. While money can be an effective motivator, other motivations may work better for you—like tracking your progress. Keeping up with how much weight you’ve lost and how many more pounds you have to go is a good way to stay motivated while also rewarding yourself along the way.
11) Avoid sugary drinks and fruit juice
Artificial sweeteners aren’t doing you any favours when it comes to weight loss. One study found that diet soda drinkers experienced a 30 percent increase in waist size over nine years, while non-diet soda drinkers saw no increase at all. If you’re trying to slim down, switch from your regular sodas and juices to water with lemon or unsweetened iced tea.
12) Eat slowly
Eating slowly is one of my favorite weight loss tips. It may seem counterintuitive, but it can help you eat less. At every meal, take a few moments to pause and give thanks for your food. Feel your stomach stretch as you swallow, and get pleasure from how wonderful it feels to be nourished by delicious food. This will help you enjoy eating rather than just scarf down food as quickly as possible.
13) Eat nuts for weight loss
Eating nuts is a great way to lose weight. Nuts are nutrient-dense foods and contain healthy fats, protein, and fiber that can keep you feeling full longer and keep your appetite in check. And they’re easy to add to your diet—you can toss them into salads, stir-fry dishes, or snack on them raw.
14) Weigh Yourself Once a Week
It’s tough to stay motivated when you’re not seeing results. Weighing yourself once a week can help you track your progress and set realistic goals. Start by weighing yourself on a Monday morning, after going to the bathroom and before eating or drinking anything. This will give you an accurate measure of your weight—and motivate you to stick with your diet plan!
15) Keep Unhealthy Foods out of the House
A big reason we overeat is that it’s easier to eat snacks than to cook healthy, whole foods. One of the easiest ways to slim down is to keep unhealthy foods out of your house altogether. It will be a lot easier for you to lose weight if you don’t have readily available junk food that can derail your weight loss efforts. If they’re not in your house, they won’t tempt you.
16) Be Choosy at Restaurants
Restaurant portions have gotten out of control. Portion sizes can vary wildly from place to place, but if you’re not careful, you could end up taking in 1,000 calories for dinner without even realizing it. We’re not saying you should never order food at a restaurant again—just be aware of how much is on your plate before you dig in.
Make your next meal count by ordering small portions and keeping track of what’s coming off your plate. One serving of pasta is just a half-cup cooked. You’ll probably be surprised at how little that actually is!
17) Eat Breakfast
A lot of people skip breakfast for a whole host of reasons. Most common is that they don’t have time to eat breakfast, but if you’re going to be following an exercise program and healthy eating plan, it’s important to start your day right by eating a healthy breakfast.
Some other tips on how to lose weight quickly include doing all of your food shopping at once and preparing some easy-to-eat snacks like fruits or vegetables so you have something available when hunger strikes between meals. Other weight loss tips include cutting out liquid calories (soda, juice), watching TV while eating, drinking too much alcohol and skipping meals altogether.
18) Embrace Veggies
The best way to increase your vegetable intake is by adding them to your meals, not by eating a lot of high-calorie meat and dessert. If you’re looking for healthy diet tips to lose weight, there’s no better way than to eat more vegetables, especially at lunch and dinner. Broccoli, spinach, kale and other greens will provide you with many essential vitamins (including iron) and minerals. Plus, they’re low in calories so you can really fill up on them without overdoing it.
Use these tips to get started on your weight loss plan today! Once you start making small changes in your daily diet, you’ll be well on your way to losing weight. Stick with it and these healthy habits will become second nature. Don’t beat yourself up if you slip up along the way – just keep practicing and don’t give up! It takes time to lose weight and keeping at it is a surefire way to get there. Best of luck!