1. Eat Your Food Slower
Did you know that the pace you eat influences how much you eat, and how likely you are to gain weight? Actually, studies that compare different eating speeds show that people who eat faster are up to 115% more likely to be obese than slower eaters. Hormones control your appetite, the amount of food you eat and how full you feel. Hormones also signal your brain, whether you’re hungry or full. However, it takes about 20 minutes for your brain to receive these messages, so eating slower gives your brain the time it needs to perceive that you are full.
2. Be Sure to Drink Enough Water
Drinking enough water is so important for your health. Studies have shown that drinking water may benefit in weight maintenance and even increase the number of calories you burn in a day. Studies also show that drinking a glass of water before a meal may reduce your appetite.
3. Always Get a Good Night’s Sleep
Most people don’t realize this, but sleep deprivation can disrupt your appetite, which usually leads to an increased appetite. In fact, people who don’t get enough sleep tend to weigh significantly more than those who get enough sleep. Being sleep deprived also negatively affects glucose metabolism, concentration, athletic performance, and immune function. It also increases your risk of several diseases, including inflammatory diseases and heart disease.
4. Eat From Smaller Plates
It’s funny how the mind works. When we eat from a large plate, it can make your food portion look smaller, and eating from a small plate can make it look bigger. Studies have actually supported this fact, and shown that people tend to eat as much as 30% more when their food is served in a large plate. By eating from smaller plates and bowls, you can trick your brain into thinking that you’re eating more, making yourself less likely to overeat.
5. Don’t Go Shopping Without a List
There are two important strategies to consider when you go grocery shopping: first, make your list ahead of time & don’t go to the store hungry. Not being prepared to buy exactly what you need makes too much room for impulse buying. To be sure you don’t give in to your impulses, you should plan ahead and write down what you need before you walk out that door. By doing keeping a list and sticking to it, you will not only purchase healthier items, but also save money and have healthier foods around the house.
6. Eat the Green Foods First
A good way to make sure that you eat your veggies is to eat them as a starter. Hopefully you will fill up on the greens while you are the hungriest. This should help you to eat less of other, less healthy, components of the meal. This will lead you to eat fewer and healthier calories, which may result in weight loss. Furthermore, eating vegetables before a carb-rich meal has been shown to have beneficial effects on blood sugar. It slows down the speed at which carbs are absorbed into the bloodstream and may benefit both short- and long-term blood sugar control in people with diabetes
7. Increase Your Protein Intake
Protein is referred to as the “king of nutrients”, and some seem to think it has superpowers! This is because protein has an affect on your hunger with satiety hormones. One study showed that increasing protein intake from 15% to 30% of calories made people eat over 400 fewer calories per day, without actively restricting their intake. That can add up to quite a bit of weight loss over time.
8. Add Greek Yogurt to Your Diet
It’s easy to do – just replace some snacks or the regular yogurt you eat, with Greek yogurt for a decent dose of protein and nutrients. Greek yogurt contains up to three times the amount of protein found in the same amount of regular yogurt. Make sure you choose the non-flavored yogurt, as flavored ones may be packed with added sugar and other unhealthy ingredients.
9. Eat More Eggs, Preferably for Breakfast
Eggs are rich in high-quality protein as well as other essential nutrients that people usually don’t get enough of. When comparing at studies of various types of calorie-matched breakfasts, eggs come out on top. Eating eggs in the morning can increase a feeling of fullness, which can cause people to consume fewer calories over the next 36 hours, which can be helpful for weight loss.
10. Drink Black Coffee
Coffee is actually very healthy. In fact, it’s a source of antioxidants, and has been linked to many health benefits, such as a lower risk of diabetes, mental decline and liver disease. However, so many commercial varieties of coffee contain additional ingredients, such as sugar, syrup, sweeteners and cream. Drinking these “fancy coffees” can negate all of coffee’s health benefits and add unwanted calories and sugar. If you don’t already, try drinking your coffee black or just adding a small amount of milk or cream and avoid sweeteners.
11. Take Vitamin D Supplements
An incredible number of people around the world are deficient in vitamin D, including 42% of the US population. Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that is extremely important for bone health and the proper function of your immune system. Did you know that every cell in your body has a receptor for vitamin D, indicating its importance. Vitamin D is only found in a few foods, but fatty seafood generally contain the highest amounts.
12. Take Omega-3 Supplements
Omega-3 fatty acids are another commonly lacking nutrient which is found in seafood. They have important roles in the body, including reducing inflammation, maintaining heart health and promoting brain function. Omega-3s help fight this inflammation and keep the body in a more balanced state.
I don’t recommend completely changing your diet all at once; that can be a recipe for disaster. Instead, try to make some small changes to make your diet healthier. Incorporate changes one at a time. Some of these tips will help you keep your portion sizes smaller, while others help you add nutrients. Together, they’ll have a big impact on making your overall diet healthier without a huge change in your habits.