4 tips to help you shed those 5 pounds - Carolina Country

4 tips to help you shed those 5 pounds

Weight loss for long-term gains

By Statepoint

4 tips to help you shed those 5 pounds

Maybe you want more energy, or perhaps you want to lose weight and keep it off for good. Whatever your goals, you can decide that now is the time to make a fresh start to become the best version of yourself. Get your scale moving in the right direction and support your long-term health with these four tips.

1Skip “diet” drinks. Of course, you know it’s not the best idea to order the regular cola with your meal, but you may figure the lower-calorie diet version is okay. Not necessarily. Research has found that artificial sweeteners often used in diet drinks may be linked to an increased body mass index. If you want something fizzy, opt for seltzer with lemon or lime. But if you can’t stop dreaming of that diet soda, it doesn’t have to be completely off-limits. Just cut back. Moderation is key!

2Drink more water. When you don’t get enough, your body can’t perform normal functions, which can drain your energy. More fatigue means less physical activity. Plus, mild dehydration is often masked as hunger — prompting you to grab a snack when all you really need is water. Experts recommend drinking at least eight, 8-ounce glasses daily.

3Slow down. It takes 20 minutes for the “I’m full” signals from your stomach to reach your brain. When you inhale your food, it’s much easier to eat more than your body really needs. Studies have shown that fast eaters are more likely to be obese, compared to slow eaters. To help slow down, take smaller bites, chew 10 to 15 times and put your fork down between each bite.

4Don’t guess at portions. Restaurants often present super-sized meals, which can help create a skewed view of proper portions. Even if you’re tracking your food intake with an app or food journal, overestimating portions can sabotage progress. So, measure food portions. You may not have to do this forever, but it’s especially good to do it at the start. Doing so will help you get a visual of what portions should actually look like. You may also consider eliminating some of the guesswork with a pre-portioned meal program.

Learning about other people’s efforts can be inspiring and motivating. Success stories from people who lost weight can be found at websites such as nutrisystem.com.

Finally, don’t underestimate the effect stress has on weight-loss efforts. Stress increases hormones that stimulate appetite, and the food people crave for comfort tends to be high in fat and sugar. Help manage stress with deep breathing, meditation, exercise, hanging out with friends and listening to music.

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