Who likes the word “Diet”? Not me, and probably not you either! However, it is not healthy to be overweight. So, what do we do? There are too many fad diets to follow these days. How do we know which one to choose? Some of these fad diets that are advertised are just plain stupid… Some are not too bad ─ but don’t really work… And, some are just confusing or are too much! The real problem with these fad diets is that they are not long term solutions.
After taking a look at these fad diets, traditional diets and asking for some advice from my doctor, I came up with ten simple steps to lose weight. In simple terms, it is really just eating in a healthy manner with a couple of other measures included such as exercise! I’ve been following these simple steps for a couple of weeks now and I’m happy with the results. Plus, I feel a lot better overall! Remember to ask your doctor before going on any new health regime just to be safe!
As a warning, you might have to change some bad habits! I tried to keep the steps easy and down to the basics. I think that just about anyone can follow these simple steps to lose some unwanted weight!
You need to watch your calorie intake and keep track of how many you are burning. You do not want to eat more calories than you burn per day.
I know this sounds like a pain and it is hard to determine. So, I have searched for an easy way to do this and found this calorie burning calculator from Health Status! It’s a quite nifty and fun tool actually! They have a long list of daily activities to select from ─ everything from brushing your teeth to sleeping ─ plus, odd jobs around the home, exercising, working, cooking, hugging and much more! You enter your sex, age, height and weight- and how many minutes you did each activity for. When finished, hit the calculate button, and it calculates how many calories you have burned overall for that day!
Now this is just an estimate, but it works! Then all you have to do is keep a rough estimate of what you consumed and figure out if you are eating too much. After using the calorie burning calculator for a few days, you will learn about how many calories you should be eating compared to what you do each day. For example, a day where you sit at your desk all day and don’t exercise, you will learn that you will have to eat less that day to stay under the daily calorie intake limit.
If you want to get really serious with this, there are interactive watches such as Fitbit, which you can wear to monitor your activities, heartbeat and keep track of exactly how many calories you are burning.
Remember, this does not mean that you have to starve yourself! There are plenty of low or no-calorie foods to keep you filled up! Take a look at this list of 15 No-Calorie Foods that are super healthy for you and will definitely satisfy your hunger!
Start to watch your portion sizes.
An easy way to do this is to eat 3 smaller meals with 2-3 small snacks per day. For me, I find it easier to keep a schedule. Eat a good breakfast, then have a small, mid-morning snack. Eat your lunch, then have a small, afternoon snack. For dinner, you can make this meal a bit larger to get you through the night, or eat a small dinner with a planned early evening, light snack.
The most important thing here is to not over-eat. You want to keep a steady source of calories coming in ─ as you are burning them throughout the day. Again, don’t eat more calories than you can burn.
Eat more one-ingredient foods instead of complex or processed foods.
By one-ingredient foods I mean fruits, veggies, nuts, seeds and proteins. Keep your foods simple, and only add simple ingredients or spices. Your digestive system handles these kinds of foods better, and they usually will have fewer calories as well. Stay away from packaged foods with lots of ingredients and numbers on the labels.
Watch your carb intake ─ especially starchy carbs.
I know this is hard, so I’m not suggesting to cut carbs out of your diet totally. Just don’t eat so much of them. The starchy carbs are potatoes, rice and bread which are dense and harder for your digestion system to process. Try to keep with wheat foods as well. Wheat is so much better for you and offers a better source of energy.
In general, you want to eat carbs with a low GI – glycemic index (GI). GI is a way to measure how fast your body breaks down the carbs of what you eat into glucose. When you eat food with a high GI, such as white bread, your body breaks down the carbs fast which causes a sugar spike with a rapid decline rate. This means that you feel the energy ─ but then it’s gone. When you eat foods with a low GI, such as whole wheat bread, your body takes longer to break it down, giving you a flow of energy over time.
To get some ideas for low GI breakfasts, take a look at Never Skip Breakfast! Here Are Some Easy Breakfast Recipes! There are some great ideas here where you can still get your early day, low GI carbs as well!
Limit sugar intake.
You had to know that this one was coming! However, too much sugar is bad for you in so many ways! Sugar and sugary foods are just empty calories that your body has to burn off without getting any nutritional value from them at all!
This includes soda!
Try drinking more lemon water! It has tons of healthy benefits plus is a natural energy boost! Check out the post; Lemon Water Can Boost Energy & Brain Power & Reduce Inflammation to learn more!
Eat more fruits and veggies.
Eat them for your snacks plus as sides for your meals. Fruits and veggies offer so many health benefits, are full of Vitamins and Minerals, and are easy to digest. Plus, they fill you up and give you lots of energy!
Drink lots of water all day long!
Water keeps your body hydrated and really is what you should be drinking! Again, try lemon water, as mentioned in step five.
Eat a source of healthy protein for each meal and snack.
This does not always mean meat! Try nuts, beans, green peas, quinoa, eggs, hummus, spinach, sun-dried tomatoes, artichokes, lentils, guava and Greek yogurt.
Watch out for liquid foods.
This includes cafe-style coffee, alcohol, soft drinks and juices! Remember, just because you drink it does not mean that it is healthy for you – or that it doesn’t have calories! Make sure to add any liquid foods that you consume to your daily calorie counts!
Try to do some form of exercise every day. Ideally, you want to be doing 30 minutes of exercise at least 5 times a week. Exercise is the best way to burn calories plus work out your muscles and heart!
If you like to work out at home, I recently posted two lists of The Very Best & Free, Online -Full-Length- Yoga Workouts! Part One and Part Two. These Yoga sites are truly amazing! The workouts are taught by qualified instructors, and there is definitely something for everyone! Check them out ─ You will be glad that you did!
For those of you who want to get out more but don’t know where to start, try these 6 Small Steps To Getting Back To Exercising!
In conclusion, we hope that these 10 steps will help to get you on track to losing your unwanted pounds!
Good luck! ─ And, let us know in the comments below how the plan is working out for you!
Robin, and The Zen Team!
*Note: This article is for informational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose or treat any health condition. Therefore, ask your doctor about any health concerns that you might have and seek proper medical treatment.
Photos Sources: Pixabay.com