Ways to loose weight & Boost your metabolism
So it's that time of year were we make a bunch of new year resolutions that we don't keep. So far this year I have been trying to adopt a healthy eating regime, not just to loose those extra couple of pounds I gained over Christmas, but to generally feel better in body and mind. So I have searched many sites to find out ways you can lose weight and burn fat by making small changes, and here are the best bits I have found most helpful which I will be including into my diet.
Drink the green stuff
Green tea is something I have been drinking for a couple of years, its also a beverage I have mentioned on this blog many times. With all the searches I made, Green tea has always came out on top and I can understand why, apart from all the brilliant health benefits it brings, it also helps boost your metabolism. Its recommended we drink 3 cups daily, apparently you can burn 60 calories a day just by drinking the popular herbal tea.
Mix up your exercise regime
It goes without saying, exercise is essential if you looking to stay fit and healthy, I recommend introducing push-ups, planks, squats, lunges, bench step-ups and pull-ups into your exercise regime to help burn calories.
If you take up running or use a treadmill or cross-trainer etc at the gym, a great way to burn more fat and make your work outs more effective is by doing high-intensity interval training. Which is where you run at a fast pace and then slow down and repeat a couple of times, which is a great metabolism booster.
If you go running often your body burns fewer calories as your body adapts to the same regime, so by mixing up your sports by taking up boxing, biking or walking etc your body will get to work out different muscles making burning fat more effective.
Exercising during that dreaded time of the month will not only lift your spirits, but it also helps burn 30% more fat compared to when your not on your period.
Prevent fatigue and tiredness
Eat foods high in Iron. This is something I lack of and should really eat more of, not having enough iron in your diet means your metabolism could slow down as your body cant get enough oxygen to your cells. By eating fortified cereals, chicken, soy nuts, dark chocolate and dark leafy greens it can prevent you feeling weak and fatigue.
Say Hello to more H20
Water plays an important part in weight loss, not only does it keep you hydrated but if you drink a glass of water first thing in the morning and then again not so long after, your metabolic rate shoots up. I really recommend buying a water filter, I brought one at Christmas to filter out all the nasties from tap water, I keep it in the fridge and try to drink at least 1.5 liters/8 cups a day. Also if your dehydrated you will burn fewer calories.
Alcohol is not your friend
As I am not much of an alcohol drinker, this one is pretty easy for me to stick too, especially at the thought of alcohol slowing down your metabolism, so if your eating a high calorie meal with your drink its more likely to store as body fat. Opting for water or green tea with your meal, will be more beneficial as it will help increase your metabolism and in turn burn off more calories from the meal.
Having calcium in your body will help to burn excess fat faster, so introduce low fat dairy to your diet such as low fat cheese and yogurt, its recommended we have 1,200 mg of dairy a day.
Three to four weekly meals or tuna, salmon or mackerel (fatty fish) is good for you, as they contain lower levels of leptin compared to other meats which are higher in leptin resulting in a lower metabolism and weight gain.
Find your Zen and ZZZ's
Being stressed and lacking sleep can contribute to eating higher calorie foods and encouraging your body to store fat. So find an activity such as yoga or listening to music to help you relax, and by having at least 8 hours sleep a day will give you the extra energy boost you need to burn those calories throughout the day.
Peanut butter is rich in magnesium which gives your body an energy boost and fires up your metabolism. I've recently started having peanut butter and banana on whole-wheat bread for lunch or with porridge for breakfast and I have noticed its kept me fuller for longer and I've had more energy than normal.
Don't skip breakfast
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, if I am ever running late for university and I have had to skip it, I'm usually on the floor before I even reach the lecture room. A great breakfast idea is a chopped banana, low fat yogurt and granola, also try and eat a breakfast with something that is high in fiber.
Eat protein in moderation (20-35% of your diet), as it helps give your metabolism a boost and your digestive system has to use more energy to break it down, making you burn more calories. Eggs, sweet potatoes, walnuts, almonds, chickpeas, oats, wheat and rye are good sources of protein.
Try not to go any longer than 4 hours without eating, long periods of not eating will slow down your metabolism. So try to have five small meals a day - breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, tea - with the snacks being small and of 100-200 calories or less.
Don't avoid carbs
When most people diet they try and cut out carbohydrates completely, but your body actually needs them so they shouldn't be avoided, just eat the right kind. Vegetables, fruits and whole grains are good sources - when looking for whole grain bread or cereals look for cracked wheat, whole wheat and whole oats.
As I am a complete and utter fidgeter, this is good news for me, the more you figit the more calories you burn. If your having to sit for long periods of time, try stretching and crossing and uncrossing your legs, and when your on the phone try pacing up and down the room - people who are in constant motion store less calories.
Eat bananas, spices and citrus fruits
Bananas are a great source of potassium, so eat them as a snack to give yourself an energy boost between meals. Add citrus fruits to flavor water or sprinkle them over fish and salad. They contain vitamin C and help burn fat faster and increasing your metabolism. Spicy foods can help release more adrenaline, and give your metabolism a boost. So try adding cayenne, peppers, and jalapenos to your meals.
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