4 Simple Ways to Boost Your Weight Loss

4 Simple Ways to Boost Your Weight Loss

Losing weight isn’t about counting calories; it’s making healthy food choices. Follow these tips to reach your goals.

It’s estimated that over 39 percent of Americans 18 and older are obese. And we’re not talking about just being five or 10 pounds overweight; it’s being 5’6” and weighing 186 pounds or more. That’s an increase from 33.7 percent just 10 years ago, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study published recently in JAMA.

Despite all the weight management advice and nutrition services out there, it makes you wonder what’s triggering this. Approximately 45 million Americans go on a diet each year, and spend around $33 billion annually on weight-loss products.

You already know you should be having seven to nine servings of fruits and veggies daily, getting in 10,000 steps(or the equivalent) and sleeping well for seven to eight hours each night. But here are four other things you can do every day to boost your weight loss efforts and lead a healthy lifestyle, so you don’t become one of the ever-increasing number of obese Americans.

  1. Eat a protein-rich breakfast every day: In two studies, teens who were overweight and regularly skipped breakfast saw that making the switch reduced hunger, shed pounds and helped their bodies regulate their appetite better.
    Some healthy breakfast choices are a spinach egg white omelet, 100 percent whole-grain toast with natural peanut or almond butter and a banana, overnight oats, or chia pudding.
  2. Take a probiotic daily: Eating gut-altering processed foods kills off weight-regulating bacteria in your gut. Not to mention consuming meat treated with antibiotics can mess with your microbiome. Greek yogurt, sauerkraut, kimchi, kefir and kombucha are natural sources of probiotics, but eating fiber-rich foods can also improve your digestion.
  3. Drink plenty of water: You can control your hunger by drinking a full glass of water first thing in the morning and then before every meal. Plus, you boost your metabolic processes by helping food and liquid move through your system. Water can also replace calorie-laden sugary beverages.
    Drinking filtered tap water from your home in a non-plastic bottle is your best bet; a study found that 93 percent of 11 popular brands of bottled water contained micro-bits of plastic in the water! These plastic particles can spread to your intestines, gallbladder, pancreas, spleen and liver.
  4. Eat whole foods: Make your main food choices products that come from the ground (fruits and veggies), but if you must choose packaged foods, go for products with fewer than five ingredients (not including spices or herbs). This will help you avoid highly processed foods. Unfortunately a 2015 paper in BMJ Open reports that almost 60 percent of Americans’ calorie intake comes from highly processed foods. Not only does that deliver empty calories, it increases cancer risk.
    The researchers of the study defined highly processed foods as those with artificial flavors, colors, sweeteners, emulsifiers and other additives. Some examples include soft drinks, sweet or savory packaged snacks, baked goods, chicken or fish nuggets and other reconstituted meat products and instant noodles and soups.

Medically reviewed in September 2019.

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