If you’re trying to lose weight, you’re well aware that it’s the small things that add up — the “little bit more” at the dinner buffet, the “little bit too tight” sensation of your clothes. But what if you also learned about the small things you might do on a daily basis to boost your weight-loss success? They’re right here.
10 Steps to Improve Faster Weight Loss
- Change your snack options. “First and foremost, keep an eye out for mindless snacking,” advises Emily Banes, RD, clinical nutritionist at Houston Northwest Medical Center in Houston, Texas. “calories pile up quickly.” Instead of snacking on the baked goods in the break room, make a plan for nutritious snacks that mix a little fat, protein, and crunch, such as apple slices slathered with peanut butter. If you’re counting calories, do the math: a pound is 3,500 calories, so if you can eliminate 100 calories from your day, you’ll lose a pound in just over a month.
- Limit your intake of high-calorie condiments and sweeteners. “Rather than ordering a coffee with sugar, try Splenda,” suggests Banes. Similarly, instead of mayonnaise, try mustard on your burger or sandwich, and order your salad dressing on the side so you can control how much you consume.
- Make your own way. “Exercise is essential,” adds Banes. People who engage in at least 150 minutes of physical activity every week are more likely to lose weight. Take the stairs instead of the elevator, or park a little further away from your destination to avoid having to walk. This will result in greater exercise – and hence more calories burned.
- Prepare for food temptation. If you know you can’t live without freshly baked brownies, don’t have a mix on hand. Also, if you’re going somewhere with friends or family and know you’ll have a hard time restraining yourself, make a choice about what you’ll eat before you get there — and stick to it.
- Experiment with the veggie-loaded plate technique. Banes suggests that you use your plate to influence your meal selection and portion proportions. Vegetables should account for one-half of the plate. Protein and starchy carbs might be divided on the opposite side. Banes advises that if you obtain a second dish, it should be entirely composed of vegetables. People who consume five or more servings of fruits and vegetables per day are more likely to lose weight.
- Avoid fast food. A study of 1,713 persons who had effective weight reduction found that people who ate at fast food restaurants fewer than twice a week had better weight loss results. “If you do eat fast food, don’t supersize it,” Banes advises, instead opting for a salad, small portions, or “baking rather than frying.”
- Keep your calorie intake to a minimum. While most people recognise that sugary drinks include calories, Banes believes that sweet tea and juices are misunderstood. Sweetened tea has the same calorie count as soda, and Banes recommends eating the fruit rather than drinking the juice.
- Whether you keep track of your daily food choices with a diet buddy, a support group, or a food diary, it only takes a few minutes and can quadruple your weight-loss success.
- Order less food portions and more veggies. According to research, those who order lesser servings or share a plate at restaurants are more likely to lose weight. Banes suggests purchasing a lunch portion, an appetiser, or a children’s meal — or putting up to half your meal in a doggie bag before you start eating.
- Appreciate your achievements. People who feel they can succeed at weight loss are more likely to succeed. How do you develop this self-assurance? When you make healthy decisions and meet your short-term goals, give yourself a pat on the back.
These tiny improvements, which are all simple to implement, will soon add up to more pounds dropped over time.