Weight loss tips: 7 easy diet and lifestyle changes for a healthier body

How to Lose Weight: 7 Diet Tips

When it comes to weight loss, we’re tuned to look for the hardest workout and the toughest diet. But most people get discouraged by a hardline approach, which in any case, is unrealistic to follow. Crash diets or boot camps are just temporary solutions. For long term weight loss, it’s essential to make some changes in your lifestyle. Losing weight is good for you when it’s done in a healthy manner. You don’t need to starve yourself or exercise for several hours everyday. We spoke to Delhi-based weight loss and functional medicine expert Dr Anjali Hooda, who shared some simple tweaks to melt excess weight:

7 weight loss and diet tips to incorporate in your lifestyle:

– A lot of people are constipated, and that makes you put on weight. You need a clean gut to have a better body. The toxins in the gut prevent absorption of nutrients, and also lead to inflammation. When this inflammation is chronic it leads to weight gain. Keep your gut in good condition by reducing your intake of sugar, packaged and processed foods, and increasing fibrous vegetables and home cooked food. A daily bowl of home-made yoghurt provides enough good bacteria to heal your gut.

– Sometimes hunger and thirst are not realised by the body as different reflexes. If you are abnormally hungry at a certain time, the best idea is to drink glass of water first. Then perhaps you won’t feel the need to snack or overeat.

– The five-meals-a-day concept was made for diabetics to keep their insulin level under control. But for people with normal blood sugar it’s the worst idea, especially if you want to lose weight. Snacking must be restricted to half a fruit or a few almonds, but no more. By eating three full meals and big snacks in-between, you eat more than required and accumulate too many calories.

– Your main meals must be balanced and a mix of carbs, protein, fat and fibre. Don’t eat only salads or smoothies for meals because you will end up snacking unnecessarily.

– Gluten is a tough protein to process, especially as we grow older. So going gluten-free is great if you have accumulated age-related weight. If you’re older, then you must eat easily-digested proteins and grains such as millets, unpolished rice and quinoa. Avoid corn flour and potato starch, which are usually present in gluten-free products.

– People tend to overeat fruits, and more fruits mean more sugar. If you’re trying to lose weight, choose hard fruits because they contain less sugar. So if you’re eating papaya, don’t eat it when it’s gone very soft because it will be higher in sugar. An appropriate daily serving of fruits is what you get served on a flight.

– Intermittent fasting really works for weight loss. In this, you keep a gap of about 14 hours between your last meal to your first meal (sleep time included). You can drink herbal teas, black coffee and tea, or water, but no milk-based beverages. This digs into your stored fat or glycogen source so you utilise that fat during the fasting stage. However, do not break your fast with a high sugar food, for instance a bowl of fruit of a glass of cold coffee, because you’re asking your insulin to increase and store fat. If you’re on a weight loss diet, start with something that’s high in fibre and protein, for instance sprouts, eggs, nuts, or yoghurt.