Unrealistic and aggressive weight loss targets for the New Year will just undermine your efforts which will sooner or later trail off with short lived or no results. Some important lifestyle behaviours related to your food intake are what you need to cultivate to help you achieve healthy and realistic weight loss goals. They are listed as below:
- DITCH PACKAGED AND READY – TO – EAT FOODS AND GO NATURAL: This is the main reason why people all over the world are getting fat and sick. Processed foods and beverages are usually loaded with sugar either directly or sugar hiding under fancy names. Additionally, ready to eat foods contain lot of sodium, chemicals, artificial colors and flavors which in no way make a healthy food. So ditch those packets and consume natural and freshly prepared foods as much as possible. If you need to consume a packaged food item at some point, use this check list - The longer the list of ingredients on a food label, the more highly processed and unnatural the food is. Check for less than 5 ingredients in a single packaged food.
- SNACK SMART: We all love to snack but snacking wisely goes a long way in controlling body weight and preventing unnecessary pile on of calories. A simple example – A regular burger contains somewhere between 300 to 350 calories while a plate of idli sambar contains somewhere between 180 to 210 calories. It is all about picking the best snack option when your stomach is rumbling with hunger. Dried fruits, fresh fruits, boiled sprouts, roasted nuts, home made soups make up smart snacking options.
- WATCH YOUR PORTIONS: Well, weight loss is not just about eating healthy low calorie food, it is also about controlling the quantity of food that you consume at one time. In other words, it is not just what you eat but also how much you eat. Healthy eating also has an upper limit because anything done in excess turns unpleasant. Maintaining portion sizes is extremely important. By doing so, you can even indulge in your most favorite food sometimes, with your Dietitian’s approval.
- STAY HYDRATED: Keeping yourself well hydrated has a huge impact on your overall health, including the benefit of weight loss. Drinking water increases the amount of calories you burn as the body uses these calories to warm the water up to body temperature. Sadly, a significant number of us fail to meet the common recommendation level of 2 litres (8 to 10 glasses) of water each day for normal, healthy individuals. For those who do not care much for the taste of well, nothing (plain water usually has got no taste), there is infused or detox water to their rescue. Apart from providing great taste and a refreshing alternative to plain water, infused water helps detoxify your body, kickstarts your metabolism and curbs appetite. Preparing infused water is really simple – Just fill a pitcher with water, add thinly sliced fresh fruits, fragnant herbs or spices, chill in the refrigerator and enjoy sipping!