When it comes to losing weight, anyone can do it naturally – and no one needs to take diet pills or undergo surgery to achieve their goals. The problem is, as weight continues to accumulate, the urgency to lose it grows. What was only ten pounds becomes 20 pounds, then 30, then 50 and so on. Creeping obesity is a rampant problem throughout the Western world and the only person who will help you get your body back on track is YOU.

Here are a few tips that will help you lose weight naturally.

1) Cut back or cut out very starchy carbs
If you’re it the pattern of having cereal for breakfast, a sandwich for lunch and a bowl of pasta or burger for dinner, you’re eating a heck of a lot of starchy carbs that have little or no nutrient value. Instead of having starchy carbs with three meals a day, cut back to one meal a day (or eliminate). Starchy carbs include: oats, rice, wheat, bread, pasta, crackers, cookies, potatoes, yams, etc. Substitutions might include plain yogurt, eggs (breakfast); salads, broth-based soups (lunch/dinner).

2) Increase water intake
Drink a glass of water (room temperature) before each and every meal, and upon waking. Water will help to eliminate toxins that often cling to fat, improve digestion and generally keep you feeling fuller longer.

3) Decrease caffeine intake
If you’re drinking coffee or caffeinated beverages all day long, you need to ease off. Just one cup of coffee can increase your body’s cortisol levels by 30%. Cortisol is a hormone that’s closely associated with fat storage through the midsection. What’s more, it’s a stress hormone. Stress is body fat’s best friend. The more you stress, the more you’ll hang onto fat.

4) Get more sleep
The most under-used and under-appreciated forms of weight management, sleep promotes growth hormone. Allowing your body to flow through three cycles of REM every night will allow your body to create optimal levels of growth hormone, which translates to greater muscle mass and decreased fat storage. Shoot for at least six hours of sleep every night.

5) Do NOT eat something because the label tells you to
Nearly anything that is labeled as low fat, fat free or light is almost always high in sugar. Even if it’s low in fat, your body will take the sugar and store it as fat in your body…exactly what you don’t want.

6) Avoid “slow and steady” workout, do interval-based workouts instead
You don’t need to be an athlete, or even in good shape to do interval workouts. An interval is simply pushing your body from easy effort to hard effort, then back down again. 

7) Snack better
A bag of pretzels, a big banana, a container of yogurt or a fruit smoothie all sound like good snacks, but they’re sugar traps (see point 5). If you’re going to snack, try to pair what you’re eating with a healthy protein or a little bit of fat.

8) Eat right for your body type
People who are shaped like an apple, should eat differently from people who are shaped like a pear. Knowing your body type, where you gain weight and what you should eat will help you lose weight naturally and effectively.

Want more tips like this? Traci D Mitchell is a Chicago-based health and fitness expert. Follow Traci on Facebook. She’d love to see you there! Interested in working with Traci? She works privately with clients specializes in nutrition coaching and weight loss as well as functional fitness and personal training. All sessions are done via Skype or telephone if outside of Chicago. For more information, contact Traci here.

 

 

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