Struggling to achieve your weight loss goals? Check out these 4 pieces of advice that will help you get more active, eat less, and feel happier and healthier. All while shedding those stubborn pounds.
1. Turn off the television
- There’s probably no simpler way to lose weight than to stop watching TV.
- Researchers estimate that 10,000 steps a day measured with a pedometer roughly approximates the recommended level of daily activity, but TV viewing negatively impacts your daily step count.
- One study has found that every hour of television viewing is associated with 144 fewer steps walked. This means that an average person who spends 3.6 hours a day in front of the TV walks 520 steps less than they would otherwise.
- Additionally, for each hour of television that participants watched, they were 16 percent less likely to achieve the 10,000-steps-per-day goal. For those who watched the 3.6 hours a day of TV on average, their odds of walking 10,000 steps a day were 47 percent less than those who didn’t watch TV.
- If you can limit yourself to just two hours a day of TV or less, you’re likely to consume fewer calories and fewer nutritionally bereft snacks than those who watch more.
- When you do watch TV, leave the snacks in the kitchen. Another study found that if you snack while watching TV, you’re much more likely to be obese.
2. Don’t work excessive overtime
- Though your boss may be unhappy to hear it, the fact is that if you work more than nine hours a day (including your lunch break) you’re more likely to be overweight.
- The more stressful your job is, the more likely you are to be overweight as well. So if you’re constantly stressed and working late, it couldn’t hurt to find a less demanding role.
3. Get a solid eight hours of sleep
- There’s compelling evidence that hitting the sack before midnight and getting a solid seven or eight hours of sleep can prevent obesity.
- Researchers from the University of Warwick reviewed the cases of more than 15,000 adults and found that sleep deprivation is associated with almost twice the risk of being obese. They also found that the less you sleep, the more your body mass index and waist size increase over time.
- What would cause this? Probably hormonal changes produced by sleep deprivation.
- Other studies find that lack of sleep stimulates production of ghrelin, a hormone that stimulates appetite. Exhaustion also reduces production of leptin, a hormone that suppresses appetite.
- The bottom line? When you’re tired you feel hungrier and eat more.
4. Take a walk before supper
- Going for a short walk does more than just burn calories. It also cuts your appetite. And if you take your walk just before suppertime, you won’t want to eat as much as usual.
- In a study of 10 excessively overweight women, 20 minutes of walking reduced appetite and increased the sensations of fullness as effectively as a light meal.
You can achieve your health goals, but you don’t need to achieve them alone. Use these tips to help the process and seek out support from friends and family. With dedication (and some clever strategies) you can reach a more ideal weight.