How to Trim the Waistline
Approximately 65% of the American people are overweight and even more alarming, a recent study predict that in 40 years’ time, we could all be overweight. The good news is: We may not be around but if you suspect you may be, read on for some practical ways to trim the waistline.
We’re not talking about diet. We’re all sick of them—they only work when you’re on it. Once you think you’ve finally arrived, ditch the diet to enjoy life a little. Boom! The weight comes back with even more vengeance. Been there?
Don’t sweat it. You can effectively drop pounds without locking up your pantry or putting a padlock on your fridge.
Do you often feel like this nice-looking champ? Are you sick of all the Yo Mama jokes that are directed at you, tongue in cheek or not? I don’t blame you. Many people have this problem and it seems to be growing with the bad economy. People snack more when they are worried or anxious.
Consider these simple tricks:
1. Reduce Portion Size
The more you eat, the more calories you consume and if you’re not out there in the gym, working your body to death, take the easier route. Reduce your serving portion.
For example, if you reduce a 7oz. hamburger to a smaller version (say, 5.7 oz), you shave off 97 calories. Just like that. If you cut back a 8 oz serving of Mexican entrée to a petite 6.3 oz. size, you have just kick 133 calories out the kitchen.
Now, of course, there are other tricks. Buy smaller serving plates—they create an illusion of more food than it’s actually there. And while you’re at it—enjoy your food, chew it slowly for it takes the brain a while to realize you’re full. That way, you won’t be chowing down a ton and then, realize you’re completely stuffed.
A good yardstick to keep your plate from piling up: Use fractions to portion your serving size—allocate ½ the plate to vegetables, ¼ to protein and the last ¼ to carbs.
2. Smart Food Choices
If you live a fast-paced life, you are familiar with “grab a bite,” mode of living. Drive-ins are your favorite haunts and ready-made entrée are a snap. Health experts caution against too much fast or processed food. Loaded with fats and chemicals, these foods can pile calories.
Opt for easy to prepare meals. It doesn’t take long to grill some chicken breasts, seasoned with themogenic spices (they help burn fats) or create a salad with simple home-made dressings. That way, you get to control what goes into your food and you can substitute “fat-laden” seasonings with healthy, flavorful ones. For example, instead of seasonings your meat with lots of store-bought sauce, try no-calorie lemon juice, vinegar and herbs.
According to Patrick Murphy, a LA-based celebrity trainer--if you reduce salt intake, you can easily shed an extra 5 to 7 pounds of pure body fluid. He added that even if you haven’t made any other changes to your diet or workout routine, if you just control your salt intake, you can say goodbye to that soft, bloated appearance.
Your mother told you so? Exactly! Not only are vegetables and fruits full of phytonutients and antioxidants , they are satisfy your hunger in the most healthy guilt-free way.
Vegetables and fruits are not just hunger pleasers, though; they help fight weight related problems like cancer, heart disease, diabetes, infertility, asthma, heart diseases and even bad sex. And that’s not all--a recent Harvard report indicates that fat tissue in the abdominal area is strongly associated with dementia. No sane person wants to lose control of brain function.
So, load up on vegetables and fruits. Put fruits in an easily accessible area and reach for one whenever you feel like you need a snack. Include larger portion of vegetables in your food preparation.
There’s no shortcut to weight control, even if you’re not asked to go on a grueling diet plan. Exercise works on a simple formula: burn the food calories you put in and stop the excess calories form piling up and converting into fat. The more you exercise, the more calories you burn—a simple equation that can work wonders for you.
The catch is to make exercise a way of life. We all experience bouts of enthusiasm, especially if summer is coming or there’s a special occasion but regular exercise is the key to maintaining weight control.
Now, who wants to exercise if it’s such a dread? Actually, exercise doesn’t have to be a drag. Just think of something you like to do that’s physical. Golf? Tennis? Long walks? You decide. You can even work a little exercise into your daily routine with simple lifestyle changes—walk up the stairs instead of taking the elevator, play with your kids, volunteer to coach your kids’ soccer team.
5. It’s OK to Indulge
Health experts tell us it’s OK to indulge in food—if they happen to fall in the right category. Dark chocolate lovers—here’s the good news: Researchers at the University of Copenhagen found that people who eat dark chocolate are likely to have fewer cravings. How? These experts go on to explain that the bitter taste of dark chocolate may help the body to regulate appetite or its higher content of cocoa butter can slow digestion. Whatever the reason, fewer cravings translate to lesser caloric intake.
You may also want to consider healthy smoothie, and foods that bust fat like cherries, all kinds of berries, onion, salmon, dark olives, beans, red wine and even air-popped popcorns.
Weight control doesn’t have to be hard. With a few changes to your eating habits and lifestyle, you can keep your weight down. Looking good is within your control and you don’t have to torture yourself in the process.