With “swimsuit season” quickly approaching, many of us are looking for a quick weight loss fix. There are a few proven ways to lose a few pounds quickly and safely, but before buying into the latest diet craze touted by social media or deciding to omit carbs for a couple weeks, there are few things you need to know.
Don’t Fall for “Detox” Products
Many people adopt fasts for weight loss or detox, but they are not an effective method of either. Our bodies naturally detoxify every day. Detoxification is a normal body process of eliminating or neutralizing toxins through the colon, liver, kidneys, lungs, lymph glands and skin. Just as our hearts beat nonstop and our lungs breathe continuously, our metabolic processes continuously dispose of accumulated toxic matter. There is no food, supplement or exercise that will speed or slow down these body processes.
Low Carb Diets Don’t Work
As with the year’s ago Atkins Diet, restricting carbohydrates causes you to lose weight -- but you'll gain it all back and then some. You're simply losing water in your system, which comes right back on once a normal diet is resumed. Similarly, fasts or strict dieting can slow down metabolism, the exact opposite of what a dieter is trying to accomplish.
Limit Salt Intake
Limiting salt could mean losing a couple pounds relatively quickly. When you reduce sodium, you reduce fluids and fluid retention, which can result in up to 5 pounds of fluid loss when you get started with healthy eating. A healthy diet should not only limit salt, but also added sugars and animal fat from meat and dairy foods. For rapid weight loss, focus on fruits, vegetables, lean proteins like egg, soy products, beans and legumes, skinless poultry breasts, fish and non-fat dairy foods.
Know your Calorie Goal
The only way to lose weight is to consume fewer calories than you burn. It may not be quick or glamorous, but it works. Knowing how many calories you consume and burn is an absolute must! If you are unsure of how many calories you burn, consult a registered dietitian nutritionist or use a food diary app to give you some general guidance. Track food intake on the same app or website. Most have tutorials that can walk you through the process.
Eat Breakfast Daily
As anyone who's tried to eat sensibly knows, starving yourself now will just have you eating much more, later. To combat the urge to over-indulge in the evening, make sure to eat breakfast each morning. Choose a sensible breakfast with protein and fiber. Healthy choices for protein include eggs, yogurt and nuts or nut butters. Be sure to pair your high protein choice with a high fiber food like a high fiber cereal or fresh fruit.
With the first day of spring right around the corner, make sure you don’t fall for quick fixes in order to achieve a slimmer physique and healthier lifestyle. When attempting to make real change to weight and health, lifestyle changes are the only effective way of going about it. Any diet that starts and stops is not effective unless you learn lifestyle or diet changes, like enjoying healthy foods, eating smaller portions and moderation.
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