There is something magically delicious about the new year that makes people want to change their bad habits and drop fat once and for all with the mindset that “this time it’s different; this time I will succeed.” (Not) sadly, I am here to bust your bubble. You see, setting lofty goals without really having a plan or without synchronizing your goals with your mental mindset is a formula for failure. *bubble busted*
And when we set goals or resolutions beginning the 1st of Jan, it may be due to pressure from celebrities, friends, co-workers, family, or that super annoying infomercial for an at-home workout video that flaunted ridiculously hott models in your face for 30 minutes straight while you nursed a Haagen-Dazs cookie dough ice cream pint at midnight on a Friday night. mmhmmm.
And during new year season, the pressure to look your best is fierce! We think, “everyone else has a weight loss goal…let me jump on the bandwagon too since I can stand to drop a few (dozen) pounds.”
From my personal experience, peer pressure to perform never lasts and gets old fast. You end up right where you began in this never-ending cycle to get fit. Since you want to meet your health goals not just for 2014, but more importantly, for the rest of your precious life, then the best time to start your weight loss efforts is when you are ready both mentally AND physically.
With that said, I have for you 7 tips that will help you you achieve your weight loss goals. For optimal success, tackle one tip per week. Once you master one tip, then move on to the next. By the end of 7 weeks, these tips will be ingrained in your daily habits + you’ll have a slimmer waistline and leaner thighs. Watch out now, you may earn a new nickname: “hott n’ sexy”.
1. Refrain from drinking calories.
Sodas and juices are full of sugar that makes it difficult for the body to release fat. The biggest antagonist to burning fat is sugar consumption because it stimulates the secretion of insulin — a fat-promoting hormone. Diet drinks are not the smart alternative to caloric drinks. Although diet drinks have zero calories, they cause addiction and contain chemicals that can do more harm than good to your body. Stick to water which is refreshing, energizing and flushes out waste and toxins from the body which can contribute to fatigue and fat storage. Herbal and green tea are also great options.
2. Eat real food — only!
As much as you want to believe otherwise, processed low-calorie frozen meals, skinny lattes, 100 calorie packs, and detox drinks will NOT help you keep the weight off. You may see a little bit of results but trust me, these results will not last. To lose fat and keep it off, you must feed your body nutrient-dense real foods — not chemical loaded, man-made Frankenstein food. Real foods include wild fish; leafy greens; eggs; beef; chicken; and red, purple, and other colorful fruits and vegetables. To ensure you are truly eating a whole foods rich diet, shop the perimeter of your supermarket, or better yet, do most, if not all, of your grocery shopping at the Farmer’s Market. For optimal nutrition and to reduce toxic load, choose organic, pastured, and grass-fed options whenever possible.
3. Drink green tea to boost metabolism.
Research demonstrates that one can experience an increase in metabolism by regularly consuming green tea. Green tea leaves are not fermented and contain more catechins than other teas. These important polyphenols, coupled with the natural caffeine present in green tea, is likely the reason that regular green tea consumption can boost metabolism, increase fat burning and promote weight loss. Drink green tea as a regular part of your day morning, noon and evening.
4. Eat protein at every meal.
Want to stay fuller longer in-between meals? Eat protein. Research shows higher-protein diets help people better control their appetites and daily calorie intake. Therefore make sure to eat protein with every meal and snack. A protein-rich diet coupled with a low to low-moderate carbohydrate intake should melt away fat in record time while boosting energy and clearing away brain fog. Protein causes the brain to receive lower levels of appetite-stimulating hormones such as insulin. Fewer insulin spikes lead to less fluctuation of sugar cravings – and therefore fewer cravings. For dinner, try this lemon pepper crusted salmon for an excellent source of protein and fat-loss promoting omega-3 fats.
5. Fat is your weight loss friend.
Contrary to the hype, in order to lose fat, you must eat fat. I’m talking good fats such as coconut oil, olive oil, real butter, ghee, fish and animal fats rich in healthy saturated and monounsaturated fats. Nix the bad fats: polyunsaturated vegetable oils such as soybean oil, margarine, corn oil, canola oil, and safflower oil — these fats are composed mostly of inflammatory omega-6 properties. What makes a fat “bad” or “good” is its ability to stay in its natural chemical structure when heated and/or exposed to light. Polyunsaturated vegetable fats have a very weak chemical structure which can easily cause rancidity and oxidation; to avoid damaging the structure you definitely should not cook with these fats. When rancid fats are consumed, it can promote health ailments such as heart disease, fat accumulation, digestive unrest, thyroid hormone imbalance, sluggish energy, and low libido, among other issues. Good quality saturated fats keep their structure when heated therefore promotes balanced hormones, brain health, increased metabolism and optimal cell function. Bottom line: quality good fats come from pastured, organic, and grass-fed sources.
6. Get adequate, quality sleep.
More and more studies are linking weight gain to inadequate, low quality sleep. Indeed, fat loss factors on more than the simple mantra of “eat less, move more”. Lack of sleep increases the stimulus to consume more food and increases appetite-regulating hormones. Lack of sleep reduces willpower to eat healthy. When is the last time you chose a vegetable-protein option as opposed to a sugar-filled processed carbohydrate loaded treat after 10pm at night? At night, the brain’s serotonin levels are at their lowest. Serotonin is a feel-good neurotransmitter which contributes to feelings of well-being and happiness. When the brain’s serotonin levels are low, the body compensates by increasing cravings for carbohydrates. Now you see why staying up late is the craftiest way to grow your gut in no time flat. Get to bed by 10pm and aim for 7-9 hours of restful, quality sleep in a pitch-black, temperature cool bedroom.
7. Work with a Nutrition Coach.
Hiring a certified nutrition coach will help you achieve your weight loss goals faster by taking the guess work and stress (due to lack of success) out of the equation. A Nutrition coach will customize a food & lifestyle plan specific to your needs therefore exponentially increasing your adherence thus producing faster results. Not to mention, accountability plays a huge part in you staying dedicated and plowing through stressful times. Contact me today for your free 15 minute consultation.
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