Two-thirds of Americans struggle to reach their weight loss diet goal, seriously jeopardizing long term health and taking precious years off their lifespan. If current trends continue, over the next two decades, experts believe the number of overweight and obese will swell to over 80% of all adults.
Many people have the desire to lose weight and have put forth the effort countless times. The end result is typically a failure as permanent weight loss requires a major shift in lifestyle which is difficult for most. Some people fall for fad diet pills which promise massive weight loss in a short period of time without the need for calorie restriction or exercise. This is not the way to lose weight and can even endanger your health.
The only proven method to achieve permanent weight loss is eating a reduced calorie diet highlighted by plenty of vegetables and a regular exercise routine. Sometimes our metabolism stalls and we hit a diet plateau. Reducing calories or increasing exercise doesn't make the scale move. This is a survival mechanism we have evolved over the millennia which likely served our ancestors well, but today simply compounds the problem. There are some 'tricks' which savvy dieters use to help overcome the inevitable weight plateau and achieve their target goal.
Eat Slowly and Enjoy Your Food
Try chewing each bite of food twice as long as you normally would. Researchers have found that this naturally decreases the amount of calories eaten at a meal by 10%. Another important benefit is that the digestive enzymes which are present in the mouth begin to work much quicker, leading to a more satisfied feeling and less desire to continue eating. Rapid eating triples the risk of being overweight. Avoid eating on the run or while driving. Slow down, enjoy your food and reap the weight loss benefits.
Cook Your Meals from Scratch at Home
Americans spend more than half of their food budget on meals prepared away from home. Even the healthiest restaurant meals are likely to be loaded with calories, excess salt and sugar and are twice the normal serving size. It's very difficult to lose weight when you have no control over the ingredients used to prepare your food. Typical restaurant meals average between 1,000 and 1,500 calories, making it very difficult to drop weight. Reserve dining out for special occasions and prepare most meals at home where you can control portion size and use healthy ingredients.
Eat a High Protein Breakfast Everyday
Our fast paced lifestyle causes many people to skip breakfast which leads directly to weight gain. The body needs to ramp up metabolism for the day, and breakfast is the trigger for this mechanism. It's important not to fill up on empty refined carbohydrates which are burned for fuel immediately. Include a healthy protein source which requires more energy to be broken down by the body. This starts the fat burning engine in our cells which continues throughout the day. Further, larger meals eaten earlier in the day are much less likely to be stored as fat compared to a late night feast.
A healthy reduced calorie diet, along with a structured exercise regimen is the core of any weight loss program. Many people find that they reach a metabolic plateau where the body resists further weight loss as a survival mechanism. People become very set in a routine which includes habits that make further weight loss very difficult. Several weight loss 'tricks' can provide the necessary stimulus to ensure you achieve your permanent weight goal and reap the benefits of improved spirit and health.