10 easy to follow proven tips to a Successful Weight Loss Plan
The battle with weight loss is an ongoing one for many people around the globe.
Rightfully so because packing on the weight is easy but getting it off is quite a task.
If you are in this group of people that actually wishes for a magical way to get all the excess weight off, you have by now realized that there is no such thing.
Truth be told, there is no shortcut and none of the diet plans out there will help you lose weight overnight.
To lose weight and keep it off for good, you have to make changes in your lifestyle, the kind of foods you eat, the amount of food you eat and the calories you burn daily.
Regardless of your goal, here are top 10 tips to a successful weight loss plan.
1. Don’t ban foods
The first major mistake that many people do when they embark on a weight loss journey is to ban what they consider as bad foods.
Well, if you truly want to lose weight then please steer clear of this pitfall.
Under no circumstance should you ban that cookie or ice-cream that you dearly love because sooner or later it will be calling you from your sleep.
The best way to lose weight is to learn portion control of these bad foods’ so that you do not crave them.
This in turn eliminates the chances of you overindulging when you get your hands on them.
Include a cheat day once a week in your weight loss plan in which you get to pamper yourself with your favorite treat.
Remember its all about moderation so try not to over compensate for the absence of your treats on your journey to reducing weight.
“I think sensible splurging is really the key to being able to achieve a healthy lifestyle,” says O’Neil, co-author of The Dish on Eating Healthy and Being Fabulous!
2. Do not skip breakfast
Another major assumption that people truly get wrong is that skipping breakfast is actually a great way to jumpstart a weight loss process.
Although the research on this is not conclusive, seventy percent of nutritional specialists suggest that getting an adequate amount of between 300 to 400 calories of protein for breakfast helps with overall satiety during the day.
However, if you’re an early riser and enjoy your workouts first thing in the morning then experts suggest having breakfast after your workout.
This way you’re burning the calories stored from your previous meal as opposed to burning calories from your breakfast.
An equally logical reasoning behind not skipping breakfast is that assuming your last meal was supper the previous night, your body will most likely be craving some nourishment by mid morning which more often then not will lead you to over compensate during lunch.
This over compensation might come in different forms for example snacking on high fat and processed foods during the day.
Contrary to the above, there are also studies that suggest skipping breakfast will not in any way hamper your weight loss efforts as you are effectively cutting out between 300 to 400 calories from your daily meal plan.
I would personally prefer to have a protein rich breakfast that will ensure my cravings are kept at bay until lunch time…
3. Plan your meals
To really align yourself for success, planning your meals in advance is essential
Putting in place a plan of your daily meals for the next week might sound a bit tedious but in the end will not only save you time but also ensure that you stick to your weight loss programme.
Once you know your daily calorie intake, all you have to do is make a trip just once a week to your grocer or supermarket.
Depending on your current weight you can find out how much your recommended calorie intake should be with this calorie counter.
You can either prepare your meals in advance at home for the coming week and freeze them or depending on how much time you have to cook every day you could whip up a tasty low fat meal in a matter of minutes.
I have found using a meal planner like this one – eat this much, has helped me plan in advance for my daily breakfast, lunch, dinner and even snacks during the day.
This way you will not run out of healthy foods to eat and thus less likely to deviate from your diet plan.
4. Drink plenty of water
As one of the most overstated tips to a successful weight loss plan, drinking water to lose weight is actually imperative in your journey.
Unfortunately though, this tip is the most ignored of all weight loss tips.
How does drinking water help you lose weight?
Several studies have shown that in adults and overweight people, drinking 0.5 litres water increases the calories burnt by 23 calories.
Drinking water before meals also leads to weight loss as it reduces appetite.
According to research done in obese and overweight adults, those who drank water before meals lost 44% more weight then those who didn’t drink water before meals.
Since water has no calories, people who refrain from other beverages and only drink water are likely to to have less caloric intake by about 9%.
Drinking water also prevents long term weight gain.
So how much water should you drink?
Keeping in mind that you get water from a lot of your daily foods, adults on a diet should typically drink 1 to 2 litres of water daily.
Children should be encouraged to drink as much water as possible as they are more active and tend to get dehydrated a lot faster then an adult.
5. Get more active
Its no secret that inorder to lose weight you have to burn more calories than you consume.
To get the most out of your weight loss plan, simply get more active and start exercising.
Select activities that you enjoy and can fit into your daily schedule.
Getting into a workout regime might seem a bit strenuous but just taking a brisk walk everyday or at least 3 times a week and can help you lose up to 150 calories a day which roughly translates 5 pounds in 6 months.
Start small and simply get off your couch more.
If you spend a lot time in the house, start carrying things in parts that you would normally carry in one go ensuring you getting more walking steps.
Ditch your car when going to the grocery store and walk there instead.
Most of all start exercising even if it’s just five minutes a day.
At the end remember that exercising is important as dieting can only take you so far.
6. Adopt a plan and stick to it
Many people who have successfully lost weight agree that starting is easy; sticking to a weight loss plan is the difficult part.
Where as diet programmes can help you in achieving your goal of losing weight, following and maintaining a diet plan forever is not only impractical but also unhealthy.
To keep the weight off you need a plan that not only incorporates the foods you like to eat but healthy meal plans, controlled portions and daily exercise.
People that are successful in losing weight and keeping it off are disciplined and stick to a regime.
“Without planning you’re always going to be struggling, trying to figure out how to eat what you should eat. You’ll end up eating things you don’t want to eat” says Barbara J. Rolls, PhD, the Guthrie Chair in Nutrition at Pennsylvania and author of “Volumetrics”
Plan your daily meals in advance.
Cook them yourself if you have the time to do so and freeze them.
Alternate your treats for healthy options like low fat cheese, veggies, fresh fruits and nuts.
Keep within your limited calorie allowance.
Make a trip to the grocer once a week instead of looking for something to eat daily.
Get some form of physical activity or exercise into your daily list of things to do.
Ensuring that you stick to a weight loss plan will limit the times you fall off your journey for parties and alcohol drinking filled weekends that doom your efforts.
7. Eat plenty of veggies and fruits
Most of us go through the phase of what to eat to lose weight or look for foods the help you lose weight.
Well vegetables should definitely be in your diet plan if you are serious about losing weight.
Most fruits and vegetables are low in calories and fat and high in fiber, all prerequisites to a successful weight loss plan.
Most fruits and vegetables also contain nutrients like vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that are essential in keeping us healthy and protect us from illness.
Although all vegetables are healthy, some of them them have a low calorie count and are worth adding to your shopping list.
Vegetables with low calorie content are the best to include in your diet plan and usually fall under the non-starchy food category.
They contain less calories, are an excellent source of fiber and phtyochemicals and help you lose you weight.
Non-starchy vegetable include green salads, artichokes, cabbage, baby corn, cauliflower, eggplant, tomato, mushrooms, leeks, cucumber, bean sprouts, celery, asparagus, carrots, onions and peppers.
Apart from getting a smaller waist line, you will gain the benefit of having flawless radiant skin.
8. Carry healthy snacks
Dieting is not about depriving your body of food. It is about eating the right things and keeping your metabolism in a continuos fat burning mode.
The pangs of hunger between meals while dieting can easily tip your focus and ruin your goals of losing weight.
The trick is to snack on healthy non fat, low calorie healthy alternatives that will curb the hunger and at the same time keep you from over indulging on your next meal.
Snacking is not only important in fuelling your body but most healthy snacks for weight loss will also give you added nutrients that will help you shed those extra pounds.
Of course snacking all day will not help your efforts so try and control not only what you snack on but how often you do.
There are many healthy snacks for weight loss that are easy to carry around and whip out for a quick munch.
Some of the best healthy snacks for weight loss between meals are kale chips, nuts, greek yoghurt, popcorn, apples, pears, beef jerky, turkey jerky, edamame, boiled eggs, cottage cheese, grapefruit, wheat crackers and granola bars.
Good healthy snacks will keep you satiated for longer periods and ensure that your not starved therefore preventing you from turning to calorie-dense fast foods when hungry.
9. Keep a journal
Jotting down what and how much you eat is one of the most motivational ways to keep you focused and on track to loosing that unwanted belly.
Just by making changes to your diet will of course help you lose weight but by putting it all down on pen and paper can encourage you to eat fewer calories according to this study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
Make it a habit of keeping a journal about what you eat, how long you walk, sleeping habits, moods and how they affect your eating habits and exercise routine.
Eventually you will not only have a list full of options for any given meal but low calorie, nutritious and healthy and could even contain your favorite foods and treats.
Keeping a food journal in a sense ensures that you are accountable to yourself and thus keeps you going even when you want to give up.
Keeping a food journal also enables you to see where you are going wrong and thus in a better position to change it to ensure you reach your desired weight loss goal.
10. Have a maintenance plan ready
Finally, to ensure that all your efforts are not rendered useless, do yourself a favor and actually have a maintenance plan ready when you have reached your weight loss goal.
Start by eliminating bad habits like binge eating and drinking yourself silly every other weekend.
There is a fine line between good eating habits and unbalanced dieting.
For example, research has shown that those who have been successful in losing weight and keeping it off have almost always reported that they do not miss their breakfast.
Drinking water as opposed to soft drink and juices is another good habit that fit and healthy people have in common.
Eating small portions is also a good habit to incorporate in your diet.
Ensure that you have a good exercise routine in mind and a feasible diet that is actually easy to stick to and won’t keep you wanting.
How many of these tips do you follow to keep your weight loss plans on track?
Share some of your tips and let us know whats working for you.
After all, we’re all here to learn how to be healthier, leaner and fitter.