Eating a 100-calorie snack pack of cookies or pretzels may seem ordinary, but it’s more likely to make you hungrier than if you ate something more substantial, says Amy Goodson, RD, dietitian for Texas Health Ben Hogan Sports Medicine. “Eating small amounts of carbohydrates does nothing but spike your blood sugar and leave you wanting more carbs. ” Goodson recommends choosing a protein such as peanut butter or string cheese with an apple for weight loss. “They are higher in calories per serving, but the protein and fat help you get full faster and stay full longer and you end up eating fewer calories overall.”
Drinking water is important during weight loss because it provides hydration without unwanted calories. “Drinking non-caloric fluids like water before or with a meal can help a dieter feel full sooner, ” explains Donna Logan, RD, a registered dietitian at the University of Texas Medical School in Houston. “So in addition to not adding calories, drinking water may help replace or avoid unnecessary food calories found in snacks or extra servings at mealtime. Drinking water also helps flush wastes from the body, which is especially important during times of fat metabolism and weight loss.”
Walking may be the most popular form of exercise and a great way to improve or maintain your overall health. Just 30 minutes every day can reduce excess body fat, increase cardiovascular fitness, strengthen bones, and boost muscle power and endurance. It can also reduce your risk of developing conditions such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis and some cancers. Unlike some other forms of exercise, walking is free and doesn’t require any special equipment or training.
You already know that avoiding fatty and sugary foods will help you slim down. Replacing fast food and sweets with healthier foods can help you feel more energized, since you’ll be giving your body essential nutrients instead of too much fat, salt and sugar. A single meal at a fast food restaurant, such as a burger, fries and a soit drink can contain more than 2,000 calories. Not surprisingly, a study published in the British Journal of Nutrition in 2014 found that consumption of ready-made meals, including meals from fast food restaurants, increased the risk for obesity. Basically you can replace your favorite fast foods and sweets with healthier alternatives. For example, try plain yogurt with fruit instead of ice cream, baked sweet potato fries instead of regular fries and a small piece of dark chocolate instead of a whole milk chocolate bar. In particular, reach for protein-rich or high-fiber foods that help curb your appetite by making you feel full longer.