Losing weight is only the first battle in staying healthy. Use these tips to help keep the pounds off and reap the rewards of all your hard work.
1. Exercise 30 minutes a day
- Exercise, even more than cutting calories, is key to losing weight and keeping it off.
- Any amount helps, but a good, easily reached goal is 30 minutes on most days.
- Surprisingly, a 30 minute workout is almost as effective as a 60 minute workout, according to one study.
- Researchers speculate that the more you exercise, the more you think you can eat. By eating more, you offset some of the weight loss you would have achieved.
- The bottom line? Get as much exercise as you can. Just don’t raid the cookie jar as a reward.
2. Eat breakfast
- Most experts agree that eating breakfast every day is simply one of the best things you can do for your weight.
- People who eat breakfast can also drop more pounds than those who don’t.
- If you skip breakfast in the morning, you feel like you’re starving by lunchtime. Your body reacts by slowing down metabolism to conserve calories.
- One recommend breakfast is a whole grain cereal with at least three grams of fibre per serving.
3. Practice portion control
The vastly oversized servings at fast-food and sit-down restaurants have made it difficult for us to recognize a “normal” portion at home. Try these ideas to keep you from overeating:
- Use smaller plates. Studies find that if you use large plates, you put more food on the plate and eat more of what’s in front of you.
- Eat in the dining room. Serve in the kitchen, then go to another room to eat. You’ll be less likely to go for seconds if you have to go get them in another room.
- Most of us eat too fast. This doesn’t give the brain time to receive the hormonal signals from the stomach that it’s full.
- Wait at least 20 minutes after eating before going for seconds or dessert. Consider yourself done eating when you’re only 80 percent full.
4. Weigh yourself often
- It’s much easier to lose one pound than 10 pounds. And unless you wear your clothes tight, you may not notice that you’ve added a few.
- A study of more than 3,000 people found that the more often people weighed themselves, the more weight they lost or the less weight they gained.
Once you’ve lost weight, the next challenge is keeping it off. But with the right mix of diet and exercise, you can maintain your weight, now and into the future.