Sticking to a conventional diet and exercise plan can be difficult. However, there are several proven tips that can help you “mindlessly” eat fewer calories.
- Chew Thoroughly and Slow Down
Your brain needs time to process that you’ve had enough to eat. Chewing your food better makes you eat more slowly, which is associated with decreased food intake, increased fullness and smaller portions.
How quickly you finish your meals may also affect your weight. A recent review of 23 observational studies reported that faster eaters are more likely to gain weight, compared to slower eaters .
Fast eaters are also much more likely to be obese. To get into the habit of eating more slowly, it may help to count how many times you chew each bite.
Bottom Line: Eating your food slowly can help you feel more full with fewer calories. It is an easy way to lose weight and prevent weight gain.
- Drink Water
Drinking water before and after meals is a powerful way to lose weight fast. Water doesn’t only have zero calories, it also keeps you full.
Drinking a tall glass of water before a meal will prevent you from over eating. And, drinking a glass afterwards will kill hunger pains anytime soon.
- Cut Out Carbs
Cutting out all carbs for a week will definitely help you cut weight fast. Over the summer, I cut out carbs for 2 weeks, and lost over 10 lbs. I wasn’t overweight, but I most certainly wasn’t happy.
Adjusting to a no carb diet can be very stressful and hard to manage at times. However, it will only benefit you in the end.
Cutting carbs means everything, no starches, no fruits, no refined sugars. Protein is the key. This isn’t an effective long-term weight loss strategy, but it will help you lose weight in a week.
- Use Smaller Plates For Unhealthy Foods
The typical food plate is larger today than it was a few decades ago. This is unfortunate, since using a smaller plate may help you eat less by making portions look larger.
At the same time, a bigger plate can make a serving look smaller, causing you to add more food. You can use this to your advantage by serving healthy food on bigger plates and less healthy food on smaller plates.
Bottom Line: Smaller plates can trick your brain into thinking you’re eating more than you actually are. Therefore, it’s smart to consume unhealthy foods from smaller plates, causing you to eat less.
- Eat a Filling Breakfast
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. This doesn’t mean piling up on the bacon and going for a few extra pancakes. A breakfast filled with protein will help start your diet off right.
Eating a fulfilling breakfast will control your hunger. Snacking can still be an option, but you’ll eat less of it. Eating a healthy breakfast will keep you motivated to eat healthy all day long.
- Eat Plenty of Protein
Protein has powerful effects on appetite. It can increase the feeling of fullness, reduce hunger and help you eat fewer calories. This may be because protein affects several hormones that play a role in hunger and fullness, including ghrelin and GLP-1 (8).
If you currently eat a grain-based breakfast, then you may want to consider switching to a protein-rich option, such as eggs.
In one study, overweight or obese women who had eggs for breakfast ate fewer calories at lunch compared to those who ate a grain-based breakfast. What’s more, they ended up eating fewer calories for the rest of the day and during the next 36 hours.
Some examples of protein-rich foods include chicken breasts, fish, Greek yogurt, lentils, quinoa and almonds.
Bottom Line: Adding protein to your diet has been shown to cause “automatic” weight loss, without exercise or conscious calorie restriction.
- Store Unhealthy Foods Out of Sight
Storing unhealthy foods where you can see them may increase hunger and cravings, causing you to eat more. This is also linked to weight gain.
One recent study found that if high-calorie foods are more visible in the house, the residents are more likely to weigh more, compared to people who keep only a bowl of fruit visible.
Store unhealthy foods out of sight, such as in closets or cupboards, so that they are less likely to catch your eye when you’re hungry.
On the other hand, keep healthy foods visible on your counter tops and place them front and center in your fridge.
Bottom Line: If you keep unhealthy foods on your counter, you are more likely to have an unplanned snack. This is also linked to increased weight and obesity. It’s better to keep healthy foods, like fruits, visible.
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