Simple and Effective Weight Loss Strategies

7 Mar

What works?  That seems to be the magic question. Lately I’ve had a number of people writing with the intent to lose that last ten or fifteen pounds, which has prompted me to think about some of the best strategies I’ve seen people implement.  Here a five simple tips to help you achieve your goals.

1) Don’t eat before you go to bed.  There are obviously exceptions to this.  When I was competing I couldn’t make it through the night without putting something in my stomach, as hunger pains would wake me in the middle of the night.  However, I was incredibly lean then.  For the average person, I think eating a meal and allowing it time to settle for a handful of hours before bed is the best approach.  Whenever I am consistent in doing this I feel better. In the following article, the author cites studies that suggest the body doesn’t have time to process food, and that eating late can interfere with sleep patterns.  I think there is some interesting insight here, and worth the read.  http://www.globalhealingcenter.com/natural-health/does-it-matter-how-late-we-eat/

2) Eat clean most of the time.  Try to pick foods that have one ingredient.  It’s that simple.  Aim to do this most of the time.  For example, given the choice between a bar with nuts in it or a handful of mixed nuts, pick the latter.  No artificial ingredients.  Check out http://www.cleaneatingclub.com for lots of great recipes and tips for clean eating. www.cleaneatingclub.com

My clean eating breakfast. 3 egg whites, lean ground turkey, onions and tomatoes.

3) Give up soda.  I know, I hate this one!  I really do enjoy diet coke, but I notice that when I drink it I am almost always hungrier as a result.  In addition, often times when we take soda out of our diet we tend to drink more water, which is also incredibly important. Cynthia Sass , a Registered Dietician and Contributor Editor to Shape Magazine discusses the benefits of giving up soda in this article.  http://www.shape.com/blogs/weight-loss-coach/another-reason-ditch-diet-soda.   She also offers some great alternatives to soda as well.

4) Keep a food journal.  This might sound pointless but you would be surprised how much you put in your mouth without thinking about it.  Keeping a food journal helps you stay accountable.  Plus, it helps you recognize what eating patterns work for you.  When keeping a food journal, you can also chart how you feel.  This will allow you to look back and make observations on how food affects your body.  For example, one individual I know realized through charting that every time she ate dairy her stomach bloated and she didn’t feel healthy.  Many people suffer from food intolerance and keeping a journal allowed her to recognize her sensitivities. For those who are interested in tracking their patterns online, take a look at www.fitday.com

Try implementing these tips to aid you in achieving your goals.  All of them have worked for me and many people I know.  They seem simple but surprisingly many people don’t do them.  Decide, commit, succeed!

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