6 Tips for Healthy Weight Management
By Scarlet Gratton
We all deal with a wide range of health and fitness goals in our lives, and they become especially prominent during this time of year, right after we wrap up all the holiday feasts. After all, life doesn’t boil down to dieting, and not to mention the numerous fad diets (many of them downright dangerous) that people resort to in the attempt to regain their former fitness glory. There are, fortunately, better, healthier ways to organize our eating habits, and to make sure that we stick to our long-term health goals, whether they are structured around weight loss, muscle gain, or simply weight management.
No matter what your health aspirations may be, we can agree that there is no one-size-fits-all in the world of diets. However, there are certain golden rules that apply to us all, simply because they are the best ways to practice moderation, self-control, and healthy attitudes towards nutrition in general. Let’s go over these six pillars of healthy weight management and how you can implement them in your own life.
1. Hydration is essential
Without resorting to the typical “you’re made of water” definition, let’s focus on the simple fact that your body truly does need water to process the many macro and micronutrients you ingest with your food. It’s essential for a wide range of metabolic processes, and you definitely should pay more attention to it even just for weight management reasons.
For example, studies have shown that simple timing tricks can do wonders for managing your caloric intake. If you commit to drinking plenty of water half an hour before your meal, you’ll be bound to eat fewer calories, thus helping you prevent overeating.
2. Portion wisely
You don’t have to be a bodybuilder to learn about your body’s macronutrient needs, or to pay closer attention to why and how you can manipulate your food intake to achieve your desired results, or to maintain them for that matter.
Make sure that you eat plenty of filling, lean protein; healthy, micronutrient-packed carbs, and healthy fats – and your diet will be all the better for it.
3. Give your menu a supplement boost
Supplements come in many forms, from healthy herbal teas meant to boost your metabolism, powerful shakes, meal replacements, all the way to convenient weight loss pills that can simplify your efforts and help you retain your weight-loss rhythm. They are particularly handy in these post-holiday weight troubles, when your metabolism could use the added “nudge” to burn off the extra calories.
Make sure you pick the best match for your needs, and of course, still pay attention to all other dietary essentials to stay healthy as you regain control over your weight.
4. Focus on whole foods
This is a simple, but powerful way to not only infuse every meal with the right balance of nutrients you need, but also to give them as much flavor as you possibly can, which will only inspire you more to stay on the right track.
However, this applies to your snacking habits as well, so don’t use your daily snacks as an excuse to reach for a candy bar if you can instead munch on an apple, a portion of mixed veggies or fruits, or a handful of healthy nuts and seeds.
5. Calories do matter
Calorie-counting alone may not be the best way to lose weight, gain muscle, or to simply keep an eye on the scale, but it is a vital part in ensuring the optimal eating structure for your unique needs. That said, you can use your own, individual approach, and simply make a meal plan with strict portions with your calories already counted, or allow yourself to be more flexible.
Either way, one of the most effective methods to combine calorie counting with eating the right foods (because quality matters as much as quantity) is keeping your own food journal every day. You can either let an app keep a log of your meals and its caloric values, or you can keep a notebook at hand to note down all of your meal contents and do the math on your own – some prefer the latter simply because it increases accountability and awareness.
6. Have fun with your workouts
Although we all know that nutrition plays a vital role in weight management, we cannot disregard the impact your exercise system has on the same goal. That is why you should create an equally sustainable system that will not just be effective, but that you’ll also enjoy!
Let’s face it, too many people drop their workout habits altogether simply because they aren’t having enough fun. If the treadmill is dull for you, find a class you’ll love and look forward to, and don’t be afraid to mix it up as often as you please. Diversity will keep your body guessing, and you’ll be able to stay toned, healthy, and lean.
Life can often become so overwhelming that we lose track of one or even several of our dieting promises, which is why so many diets fail. Implementing these tips will help you stay on the road to health, not because it’s restrictive, but because it’s a system that can help you preserve your goals and enjoy them more than ever!
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