Weight loss has become synonymous with strict dieting and being a regular at the gym. In other words, if you want to shed that flab, you’ve got to give up your favorite foods and sweat yourself out, not for one or two days, but for what seems like an eternity.
No, not anymore.
There are other ways to trim down your waistline and flatten out that stomach without excruciating workout regimes, boring diets, and all that fad crap. With the help of these 5 super easy weight loss hacks, that are not just effective but also healthy, you can fit into that little black dress you’ve been eyeing and also enjoy a better quality of life in the long run.
1. Chew Your Food
This may seem fairly pointless, but hear us out.
A team of researchers rounded up 16 lean and 14 obese young men and studied their chewing habits. They found that although the obese individuals had a similar bite size as that of their thinner counterparts, they showed a higher rate of ingestion along with a lower number of chews.1 The researchers suggest that chewing one’s food gives the body enough time to secrete ghrelin, a hormone that tells your brain that you’re full. This automatically helps you eat less, thus making you consume fewer calories.
Hence proved; chewing your way through your food can help you combat obesity and can, by the way, also promote healthier digestion.
2. Shrink Your Tableware
If there’s one thing we’ve figured out about the brain, its the fact that it can easily be duped with visuals. If you take a large plate, you will definitely pile on more food. The obvious result? You will end up eating more calories than you really need.
Instead, try this simple trick. Shrink the size of your plates. Smaller plates will make portion sizes look larger and your brain will automatically be satisfied with the contents. Similarly, when pouring out beverages, pick thinner, taller glasses to make your drinks look bigger.
Besides losing weight, there’s another upside to this trick. Since you’re controlling your portion sizes, you don’t really need to break up with carbs or starve your sweet tooth! Go ahead and enjoy the foods you love, eat small, and eat smart!
3. Enjoy A Hearty Breakfast
We get why filling yourself up on calories first thing in the morning may seem counterintuitive. But here’s the deal – you need your metabolism to be at its best if you want those calories to burn through the day. After a long night’s rest, it’s not just you who needs to wake up, its also your metabolism that allowed itself to slow down while you were sleeping.
Skipping breakfast will make your metabolism stay sluggish throughout the first half of your day, causing your blood sugar levels to drop. By the time it’s mid-afternoon, your stomach is going to start nagging you to give it something to work with. If you’re on the go, like most of us usually are, you’re going to grab the first thing that you can lay your eyes on. Most likely it’s going to be a cream cheese bagel or an iced donut, and that is certainly not going to get you anywhere as far as losing weight is concerned.
So go ahead and poke your metabolism awake by eating a really good breakfast before you start your day. Remember, it’s the good stuff that counts, so be sure to include some eggs, a couple of slices of toast, some fruit, and maybe even a bowl of yogurt.
4. Ditch Your Soda For Water
Sodas have a nasty habit of sneaking in sugar into your system, causing your blood sugar levels to spike. Even the ones that claim to be “diet-friendly” and “zero calories” are evil. Loaded with artificial sweeteners like aspartame and sucralose, diet sodas end up disrupting the body’s ability to accurately estimate energy intake and remaining energy needs, thus leading to overconsumption.2 This invariably leads to an increase in both weight and health problems like diabetes, stroke, and even depression.3 4 5
Instead, swap your can of soda for a glass of zero-calorie water. Drinking lots of water keeps your metabolism active, a factor that plays a huge role in melting body fat. Drinking enough water throughout the day will keep you well hydrated and high on energy without the extra dose of fat or sugar, and making this a regular habit will ensure you stay healthy even in your old age.
Fill Half Your Plate With Non-Starchy Veggies
You don’t need to cut back on the foods you love, but that doesn’t mean you can ignore the foods that you don’t. More often than not, these foods that we tend to despise are usually the ones that are vital to our overall health and wellbeing, the most common ones being vegetables.
Vegetables are full of fiber and essential nutrients are low in fat and added sugar content. This means they keep you full for longer without giving you too many calories, prevent you from overeating, and boost your metabolism and your immunity. All these factors come together to help you lose weight successfully.
It can be hard to eat enough vegetables every day. But if you adopt a habit of loading up half of your plate with veggies for every meal, you’re good to go.
However, remember that vegetables can be fattening too. For instance, potatoes, navy beans, and corn can be high in carb content and give you way more calories than you may really need. Instead, opt for non-starchy veggies like spinach, carrots, and broccoli. These are not only low in calories, but super high in important vitamins, minerals, and water!
|↑1||Li, Jie, Na Zhang, Lizhen Hu, Ze Li, Rui Li, Cong Li, and Shuran Wang. “Improvement in chewing activity reduces energy intake in one meal and modulates plasma gut hormone concentrations in obese and lean young Chinese men.” The American journal of clinical nutrition 94, no. 3 (2011): 709-716.|
|↑2||Related studies point to the illusion of the artificial. UT Health Science Center San Antonio.|
|↑3||Nettleton, Jennifer A., Pamela L. Lutsey, Youfa Wang, João A. Lima, Erin D. Michos, and David R. Jacobs. “Diet soda intake and risk of incident metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes in the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA).” Diabetes care 32, no. 4 (2009): 688-694.|
|↑4||Rahman, Iffat, Alicja Wolk, and Susanna C. Larsson. “The relationship between sweetened beverage consumption and risk of heart failure in men.” Heart 101, no. 24 (2015): 1961-1965.|
|↑5||Pase, Matthew P., Jayandra J. Himali, Alexa S. Beiser, Hugo J. Aparicio, Claudia L. Satizabal, Ramachandran S. Vasan, Sudha Seshadri, and Paul F. Jacques. “Sugar-and Artificially Sweetened Beverages and the Risks of Incident Stroke and Dementia.” Stroke (2017): STROKEAHA-116.|