Adopt these 10 Healthy Habits to Lose Weight easily and feel confident all summer long.
We are so thrilled summer is approaching: lounging poolside with a pina colada in hand, diving under the salty waves at the beach. But, wait a second. There is one part of this image we are not so stoked on: bikini time. This season of swimsuits, shorts, and dresses is not one we want to spend stressing about covering up.
We are positive you look beautiful just the way you are, but we do believe in the value of feeling healthy and confident. Our philosophy on weight loss is that it should be done naturally, in a way that keeps you satisfied and full, not starved. You can think of these more as healthy lifestyle changes that we should all strive for to attain our most balanced, strongest selves. With our top 10 healthy habits to help you lose weight easily without depriving yourself. In fact, we actually recommend you eat (dark, organic) chocolate!
Lose Weight with these 10 Healthy Habits:
1) Sleep Soundly
Obtaining the full recommended number of hours of sleep each night (between 7-9 hours) is paramount to successful weight loss.
- When you are overly tired, your body becomes lethargic which sends a signal to your brain that this exhaustion is actually due to lack of food.
- Your brain thinks, “Uh oh, better send some hunger pangs to the stomach as a warning.” Hence, you crave more food, and often overeat, to provide you with energy.
2) Please Don’t Skip Meals
While you may think this is an effective way to cut back on your calorie intake, it actually backlashes every time. Calories are not a source of evil. If calories come from wholesome, real foods, you will be adequately nourished and have less cravings. Here’s the ugly downward spiral when you skip a meal:
- You are essentially starving your body and causing your hunger to increase until it becomes an insurmountable force.
- This often leads to eating double or triple the amount of food at your next meal.
3) Your Mother was Right: Breakfast is the Most Important Meal
Eating breakfast is necessary to balance your blood sugar and boost your energy.
- When you sleep, your metabolism slows and does not increase until after you have eaten your first meal of the day.
- To jumpstart your metabolism in the morning, eat at least 200 calories within two hours of waking.Try one of our Paleo Pancake Recipes to kickstart your day the healthy way!
4) Listen to those Cravings
Yes, self control and discipline is important when implementing a healthy diet. If you are craving several pieces of cake, it’s probably wise not to go there. (Unless you’ve just had a miserable week and need to let loose… in that case, heck, have at it!). What’s really important on a day-to-day basis, is that you do not deprive yourself so much that you regularly binge. Here’s how it works:
- If you are really craving a chocolate bar, you should enjoy one chocolate bar. Dark, organic chocolate can actually lower stress and be a healthy source of magnesium.
- Substituting carrot sticks or a granola bar won’t satisfy the craving and may result in you overeating by adding a chocolate bar anyway.
5) Make Healthy Swaps
There’s no need to dump out your entire pantry and fridge to start a healthy diet. Simple swaps can make an enormous difference.
- Skip the butter in mashed potatoes and add flavorful vegetables and spices instead.
- Switch your cow’s milk with almond or coconut milk.
- Lose the fried foods and choose to bake or broil.
6) Keep it Interesting by Trying a New Healthy Food Each Week
Have you ever reached a diet plateau? Healthy eating does not have to be bland or boring. It’s crucial to be creative with your meals and have fun with them.
- Experiment by adding a health food to your meals, like quinoa or chia seeds, that you’ve never eaten. You may find you love the new addition of flavor, and if not, scratch it off the shopping list! Are you eating these 10 superfoods for healthy weight loss?
- Don’t worry about the cost of organic, nutritious foods. Even Walmart and Target offer local and organic produce at affordable prices.
7) Exercise (Even Just a Little!) Ever Day
To lose weight, lower stress levels, and supercharge your brain, it is critical to exercise daily. With such busy schedules, we may feel it’s difficult to dedicate daily hours at the gym. Good news! We can have similar effects just by adding 20 or 30 minutes a day. Quick healthy habits to adopt:
- Instead of driving to the store or work, ride your bike.
- Recruit a family member or friend to take nightly strolls with you after dinner. Jump rope or do a series of yoga stretches at home. Anything to get yourself moving.
If you’re looking to drop more weight quickly, you will benefit from exercising vigorously for 60 minutes three to four times a week:
- To ensure you stick to it, schedule specific times to exercise (in the early morning before work, at your lunch break, or on your way home from the office).
- If you’d like to save time and money by working out at home, consider yoga videos, exercise equipment, and ankle weights from Amazon.
8) Keep a Food and Exercise Journal
Writing down your food choices and exercise progress keeps you on track and inspires you with evidence of how far you’ve come. It is easy to eat mindlessly, but physically writing it down brings awareness to the act.
- At the end of the day, read over everything you ate that day. This self-reflection is eye-opening. You become your own personal nutritionist and coach.
- Writing down how much you are exercising is equally important. You will begin finding more creative ways to add it into your schedule.
- If you’d like a professional dieting journal, they are available at Amazon.
9) Watch Out for Sneaky Artificial Ingredients
Your body does not know how to process and break down artificial ingredients, so you end up storing them in your body as excess weight.
- Always choose natural foods, including whole grains, fruits and vegetables and read labels.
- Artificial ingredients and highly processed foods are empty calories that lack the fuel your body needs to function optimally.
10) Supplement with Vitamins and Minerals
Nourishing your body with proper vitamins and minerals is essential for safe, healthy weight loss.
- Take a daily multivitamin.
- B vitamins, especially B-12, can increase metabolism.
- Vitamin D helps your body absorb calcium (needed to support your bones during all that exercise!).
- Vitamin C boosts your immune system, decreases muscle recovery time, and helps your body recover from stress.
- Try Drugstore.com or VitaCost to cut down on your costs.
See You at the Beach!
Adopting these simple healthy habits for life makes losing weight stress-free, so you can spend more time worrying about which of the many pool parties to attend and less about your bikini bod.