Losing weight can be a hard struggle for many people.
Maintaining a healthy weight can be even a bigger problem.
Losing weight is not only a matter of physical appearance. Being overweight can have many health-related issues and can lead to many mental problems, depression for instance.
There’s always a solution.
Sometimes the smallest change in our eating habits or food choice can bring positive results. Many studies have shown that losing weight is not a myth.
I wanted to learn more and this is what I found out: 27 research-backed tips that you can include in your routine and see a positive change.
Let’s dig deeper into science of weight loss.
Eat a big breakfast
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. It gives you energy and jumpstarts your metabolism, that is if you prepare a nutrient-rich meal.
What about the quantity? How big should breakfast be?
Scientists have already explained why we should never skip breakfast, but the latest research shows us a few things that are happening in our brain.
A study conducted at an Imperial College London found that the brain was more attracted to food if breakfast was missed. So if you skip breakfast, you will have more food at lunch.
Reward centers in our brain act differently when it comes to food. It seems the centers send signals that we need more food if we do not consume enough food early in the day. This certainly adds more credence to the belief that the breakfast is the most important meal of the day.
A 2013 study showed that eating a big breakfast can also fight obesity and disease.
Women who enjoyed a large meal in the morning had a drop in the hunger hormone than those who ate a small breakfast.
A large morning meal also helps us to lose weight and waist line circumference. Moreover, scientists found out that people who eat large meals in the morning had significantly lower levels of insulin, glucose, and triglycerides throughout the day.
This means a lower risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, hypertension, and high cholesterol.
What do you think now about the importance of breakfast?
Eat 30 grams of fiber a day
A year-long study showed that eating 30 grams of fiber per day can help you lose weight as if you are following a more complicated diet.
The results came from the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester:
“A “permissive” dietary plan, like focusing on increasing fiber, may produce more beneficial effects than a “restrictive” plan, like reducing saturated fat,” said the lead author of the study.
The American Heart Association Eating Plan recommends consuming 25 to 30 grams of fiber on a daily basis from vegetables, legumes or whole grains.
About 25% of adults worldwide have metabolic syndrome, which includes symptoms like a large waistline, high blood pressure, high blood sugar, low levels of HDL cholesterol and high levels of triglycerides, which increase the risk of cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
Dietary fiber is also beneficial for metabolic syndrome, waist circumference, glucose and lipid homeostasis, and insulin control, in addition to body weight.
“Fiber fills you up, expands in your stomach, fiber also keeps you fuller longer.”
Finish breakfast with a dessert
Don’t you just love how a sweet dessert early in the morning can boost your mood and energy?
A Tel Aviv University Medical Center study found that people who finish a breakfast with something sweet can drop more weight.
In their study, one group had a 304-calorie breakfast, which included 10 grams of carbs. The other group had a 600-calorie breakfast that included 60 grams of carbs and a small dessert, such as chocolate, a doughnut, a cookie, or cake. Both groups lost an average of 33 pounds, but the dessert group dropped additional 15 pounds.
Researchers believe that people who eat desserts seem to deal with fewer cravings.
Eat soup before sandwich
A soup can help you reduce the total calorie intake by 20%, a study published in Appetite concluded.
“Several characteristics of soup have been suggested to be involved in enhancing satiety, including the amount consumed, temperature, fat content, energy content, and viscosity. Consuming a preload of low-energy-dense soup, in a variety of forms, is one strategy that can be used to moderate energy intake in adults.”
The best is that the type of soup is not important, all sorts of soups can lead to consuming fewer calories.
Forget about diet sodas and juices
Diet soda drinkers are more likely to have a high percentage of fat in their bellies, according to a study in the journal Obesity.
The key might lie in the fact that people usually overestimate the calories in diet soda drinks.
Given sodas and juices contain up to 18 teaspoons of sugar (240 calories), this indeed is a matter of concern. Not to mention that soda drinks have zero nutritional value.
Drink coffee for metabolism
A cup of coffee can jumpstart your metabolism by 12%, according to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
Certain biologically active substances found in coffee can affect metabolism:
- Caffeine, which stimulates the nervous system
- Theobromine and Theophylline, which are substances that are similar to caffeine, can also stimulate nervous system
- Chlorogenic Acid, which is one of the biologically active compounds that may help to slow absorption of carbohydrates
When the nervous system is stimulated, fat cells receive signals to break down fat. Caffeine increases the level of the hormone epinephrine (adrenaline) that travels through the blood to the fat tissues, giving instructions to break down fat and release them into the blood. When fat is mobilized from the fat tissues, fat tissues are available as free fatty acids in the blood.
But don’t overdo it – no more than 3 cups a day.
Remember: coffee is not a food substitute.