If you are looking to lose weight it is essential that you pay close attention to your nutrition. Many people are consuming far more calories than required for their current level of activity. There are many ways to cut calories and to slowly learn to listen to your body and recognize when you are full.
Eat Nutrient Dense Foods
Nutrient dense foods are those that give you more bang for you buck. You will find that nutrient dense foods have high levels of nutrients but with few calories. These are very high quality foods that minimally processed.
The beauty of these foods is that you can eat a lot more of them without taking in many calories. You will feel full and have cut out all the extra calories.
Examples of these types of foods are :
- Chinese cabbage
- Beet greens
- Leaf lettuce
- Romaine lettuce
- Collard green
- Turnip green
- Mustard green
- Dandelion green
- Red pepper
- Iceberg lettuce
- Winter squash (all varieties)
- Grapefruit (pink and red)
- Sweet potato
- Grapefruit (white)
- Brussels sprouts
Use A Salad Plate
It may sound strange but you can actually trick yourself into thinking that you are eating more when you really aren’t just by using a smaller plate.
You can only fit so much on a salad plate. I switched out all the plates in our house to salad plates and portion seem so much bigger even though they are quite a bit smaller.
There have been a number of studies that have show that adults that eat nuts may have lower body weight and decreased health risks. Those who regularly eat pistachios also tend to have better diets compared to those that don’t. (American Pistachio Growers)
Another study showed that people that ate nuts with shells actually consume 41% few calories because they take longer to eat and the shells are a visual cue of how much you have eaten. (Pistachio Institute of Health)
Turn Off the TV
It has been shown that those that eat while watching TV consume 288 additional calories. When you are watching tv while you eat you are distracted which can cause you to miss the cues signaling that you are full.
You may find yourself eating feeling stuffed after your meal is done this is a sign that you were distracted when your body was trying to tell you it was full.
Instead of watching tv focus on your food and really try to remain mindful of your meal while you are eating it.
Drink More Water
You can cut your calories greatly by drinking a glass of water before, during and after your meal. If you fill up on water you will feel fuller much sooner.
Also many people confuse thirst with hunger. The majority of people aren’t getting enough water and are actually dehydrated which means you may not be hungry at all.
Here are a few ways to tell if you are thirsty:
- If you have recently eaten then chances are you need water.
- If you have a headache this is a sign of dehydration.
- If you think you are hungry have a glass of water first and then wait 15 minutes and see if it passes. If it does you were thirsty.
Eating slowly allow your body to catch up to what you are putting into your mouth. If you scarf down your food then you aren’t giving your body enough time to tell you when it has had enough.
So at your next meal take your time and really savor each bite. You may notice you didn’t need nearly as much food as you thought.
Eat More Fiber
Fiber is pretty amazing. Fiber can fill you up and keep you full longer. Many people aren’t getting nearly enough fiber. In a study it was discovered that people who increased their fiber intake without making any other changes lost almost as much weight as people who followed the heart-healthy, low fat eating plan recommended by the American Heart Association.
Here are some fiber rich food to sink your teeth into:
- White Beans
- Black Beans
- Kidney Beans
- Garbanzo Beans
- Whole Wheat Pasta
- Brown Rice
Embrace the Color Blue
Different colors can actually affect your appetite so get rid of those plain while plates and grab yourself some new blue plates.
Some weight loss plans even suggest putting your food onto a blue plate. You may even try putting a blue light into your fridge to curb late night snacking.
Log Your Food
It is easy to overeat when you can’t see just how much you have already eaten. Logging your food can help you keep your calorie intake on track. When you have a clear visual of what you have eaten already you are less prone to overeat.
Get Your Beauty Sleep
Night owls weight more on average because they are snacking throughout the evening (they consume more than 248 more calories). To avoid derailing all your days hard work start going to bed earlier.
Here are some interesting sleep facts:
- You burn more calories sleeping than watching tv
- Your are 30% less likely to gain weight if you get 8 hours of sleep
- Sleeping boosts your metabolism
These tips should help you cut calories that you don’t need and curb your hunger. Over time these things will come much easier just remember you have to stick with it.
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