Everyone who has ever tried to lose weight knows that it can be a struggle. In my efforts to lose weight, I’ve hit problems like plateauing and struggling to reach my target weight, and I know how easy it is to fall back into bad habits. One thing that I’ve noticed when trying to lose weight is that sometimes the small things can make all the difference. Cooking something from scratch instead of using a sauce out of a jar can help hugely, even though it might only take ten or twenty minutes more to do. Some simple changes in behaviour could be big contributions to your weight loss.
Getting enough sleep isn’t always as easy as you’d like it to be. With a baby in the house, you might be up a few times during the night. And even when they do sleep through the night, children tend to enjoy getting up early every day until they reach their teens. Even without kids, there are lots of things that can disrupt your sleep, from noisy neighbours to insomnia. But sleep helps your body to heal itself and plays a part in helping you lose weight. Stress can make you retain weight more too, and being sleep deprived can certainly make you feel more stressed.
Eating at the Right Time
Eating the right things is constantly on your mind when you want to lose weight, but we don’t always think so much about when to eat. The time of day you choose to have your meals and how it fits into the rest of your routine can make a difference too. If you’re wondering when to have your tea, between 5pm and 7pm is ideal to lose weight. There are better times to eat breakfast and lunch too, as well as snacks. These suggestions are based on studies that aimed to find out when it was best to eat to lose weight.
Make Your Own Treats
Denying yourself any treats when you’re trying to lose weight can often just lead to failure. It’s boring if you’re never allowed to eat anything you enjoy, and then you end up eating half a packet of biscuits when you finally give in. Instead, it can help to allow yourself some treats but just be careful about what you have. One thing that can work is making your own treats. You’ll know what goes into them and you can be proud of what you’ve made too. There are plenty of things you can make that aren’t super high in calories and that you can store to eat later.
Fruit, Not Fruit Juice
Fruit makes a good snack or breakfast, as long as you don’t have too much of it. It’s important to remember that fruit has sugars, even if they’re natural ones. If you do want fruit, have whole fruit and not juice. If you drink fruit juice, it’s not likely to fill you up for very long. On top of that, it has more sugar in it than whole fruit does, and it could spike your blood sugar. The resulting sugar crash can leave you feeling tired and grumpy, and liable to reach for the biscuits.
Slim Down Your Coffee
Coffee is a must for a lot of people. It helps to wake you up, and keep you awake. Even if you drink decaf, the taste of your favourite coffee is enough to keep you going through the day. But, depending on how you drink your coffee, it could be impeding your weight loss journey. Coffee isn’t particularly high in calories on its own, but combined with milk and various syrups, it can be much more calorific. Drinking your coffee black or with skimmed milk could cut out a lot of unnecessary calories from your diet.
Use a Low-calorie Cooking Oil
You might be surprised by how many calories are in some cooking oils and butters. Just one tablespoon of olive oil has 120 calories in it, which are calories that could be better used on something else. Some people prefer to use a low-calorie cooking spray or oil, such as canola oil. However, it’s also worth weighing up whether things like olive oil or butter offer nutritional benefits too. Olive oil is nutritious and many say it’s good for your heart too. So, while you might not want to have it all the time, it could be beneficial to use it occasionally.
Just a few small changes in what you eat or do could help you lose weight faster or more successfully. It can be hard, but there are ways to make it easier.