Losing weight may seem like a daunting process that requires long workouts and carefully planned meals. Although those things certainly play a big role in the process, there are many small changes to your lifestyle that can help you shed pounds.
To find out the little things you can do each day to lose weight, we spoke with three registered dietitians who offered 18 tips.
1. Invest in a water bottle
When you don’t drink enough water, your body can confuse hunger with thirst. This is why “upping the water intake can have a huge impact on how much you eat during the day,” says Lisa Moskovitz, RD, CEO and founder of the NY Nutrition Group.
If you have trouble drinking enough water throughout the day, there are a couple of ways you can remind yourself. First, carry a water bottle so you always have a physical reminder to drink.
Second, set goals for yourself throughout the day. Moskovitz recommends starting the day with a glass of water and having at least two cups before each meal or snack. “Not only will that help curb your appetite a little bit right before you eat, but it’s a good way to remember to drink first,” she says.
2. Eat healthy fats
While fats are often a feared food group, they can actually increase satiety and prevent bingeing later, says Whitney Stuart, RD, the owner of Whitness Nutrition.
Of course, some fats are healthier than others, so when adding fat to your diet, Stuart said it’s best to go for nutrient-rich unsaturated fats. These fats, known as polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fat, can be found in avocados, olives, nuts, and fatty fish like salmon.
3. Pay attention to the texture of your food
If you’ve ever found yourself at the bottom of a pint of ice cream, you’re not alone. In fact, ice cream is one of the easiest foods to overeat because of its soft texture.
“One reason why things like ice cream or mashed potatoes are easy to overdo is because the texture is such that it’s very easy to just keep eating spoonful after spoonful,” says Andy Bellatti, RD, the strategic director of Dietitians for Professional Integrity. “Whereas, if you eat raw vegetables, you have to chew them longer.”
That’s not to say that you can’t enjoy foods like ice cream or mashed potatoes, but it’s important to be mindful while you’re eating them. It’s a good idea to measure out your portions beforehand to avoid overeating.
4. Get more sleep
Not getting enough sleep can raise your stress levels, which can increase the likelihood of weight gain.
“When you don’t get enough sleep, your levels of the stress hormone cortisol rise,” Stuart says.
Stuart adds that a lack of sleep can also get in the way of weight loss because the less you sleep, the longer you’re awake, and the more time there is to eat. She recommends getting at least seven hours of sleep each night.
5. Make plans that don’t revolve around eating or drinking
You don’t have to go to bars or restaurants with friends to have a good time. There are plenty of other ways you can be social and burn calories at the same time, such as:
Go sightseeing. Visiting nearby museums, zoos, aquariums, or amusement parks can help you get in your steps without even realizing it.
Exercise. If it’s a sunny day, go for a walk, hike, or bike ride at a local park.
Make your workouts exciting. You can burn some serious calories by rock climbing, paddleboarding, kayaking, bowling, boating, or ice skating.
6. Prepare breakfast ahead of time
Breakfast is dubbed the most important meal of the day for a reason. Some research has found that skipping breakfast is associated with a greater risk for obesity, diabetes, and high cholesterol — whereas breakfast eaters are often able to maintain a healthier weight.
Stuart says that she often sees clients who skip breakfast because they’re pressed for time. She pointed out that breakfast doesn’t have to be time-consuming, especially if you prepare something ahead of time.
“I’m a big promoter of making your meals on Sunday and having a nice breakfast casserole or breakfast frittata ready to go that you can eat,” Stuart says. Egg-based recipes stocked with vegetables are filling, protein-rich, and last all week. Plus, they can be whipped up in as little as 15 minutes, Stuart says.
7. Fill up on fiber
Eating lots of fiber can help you feel full for longer. To get more fiber, Bellatti recommends eating fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, whole grains, beans, and legumes…Read more>>