In this article we will take a look at some of the simple rules of successful dieting for long term fat loss
Avoid crash diets.
They are bad for health and you will gain what you have lost once you take a break. Crash diets are not a solution to weight loss. It might seem as if you have lost few pounds but the moment you give up on the crash diet everything will bounce back with a vengeance.
Take a look at it in this way. Do you think that it is possible for a person to survive on a crash diet for the rest of his or her life? Certainly not! So at some time or the other, you will have to give up the crash diet and then you will see for yourself that a crash diet does more harm than good on the long run.
Crash diets may have a lot to promise, but very rarely do these promises ring true. Crash diets are things people go on in order to wear an old dress or suit for a particular occasion. That’s the only purpose that they serve as far as I can see.
Reduce your calories gradually:
If you are looking to lose fat, don’t make huge calorie cuts. This will kick your body into starvation mode, reducing your metabolism and making it more difficult to burn off the fat. Instead, you should reduce your calories slowly, making reductions every week or two in order to prevent this metabolic slowdown and allow your body to burn fat at an optimal rate.
Vary your caloric intake:
This is another way to outsmart your body and continue to lose body fat without lowering your metabolism. By varying you caloric intake every few days instead of eating the exact same amount of calories every day, you can keep the starvation mechanism in check and continue to burn fat.
Eat More (Good) Fat:
Getting enough of the good fats will help you lose fat, build muscle, and recover faster from your workouts. In addition, it has myriad health benefits, including being good for your heart.
Good fats include: polyunsaturated (especially Omega3’s), such as those from fish and nuts (especially almonds), as well as monosaturated fats, such as those from peanut butter, olive oil, egg yolks, and fish oil.
Take fish oil capsules EVERY DAY!
More Fruits, More Vegetables, More Fiber:
Keeping your weight under control and losing fat can be made much easier by adding a steady stream of fruits and vegetables to your fat loss nutrition program. Fruits and (most) vegetables are high in water and fiber content and low in calories.
They fill up your stomach, keeping your appetite under control at a lower level of calories. For better fat loss results, try adding more fruits and vegetables to your diet or just have yourself an apple before your meals.
The Importance of Fiber in Fat Loss and Overall Health
Increase your fiber intake. Be sure to include in your diet as many fruits and vegetables as you can. As mentioned above, fruits and (most) vegetables are high in water and fiber content and low in calories.
Fiber has a wide variety of health benefits, both directly and indirectly (due to the loss of fat with a high fiber nutrition program). Fiber plays a very important role in intestinal action, ie, keeping you ‘regular’. It helps flush cancer-causing substances from your body.
A nutrition program high in fiber is a vital key to any fat loss plan. Fiber helps you to feel full, making it easier to eat fewer calories. In addition, more calories are burned from digesting high fiber foods. In fact, by increasing your fiber intake to 35 grams a day you can automatically burn up to an additional 250 calories. While it’s recommended you get 25 – 35 grams of fiber per day, most Americans get 14 grams of fiber per day, or less.
Go crazy on vegetables. Vegetables are your best bet when it comes to losing pounds. Nature has a terrific spread when it comes to choosing vegetables. And the leafy green vegetables are your best bet. Try to include a salad in your diet always.
Fresh vegetables are better than cooked or canned vegetables. Try to eat your vegetables raw. When you cook them, you are in fact taking away nearly half the vitamins in them. And canned vegetables too are processed and are not nearly half as good as fresh vegetables. When you buy your vegetables it would be a good thing to see if the label says that it is pesticide free.
Interestingly enough, frozen veggies can have as many or more nutrients as fresh ones, because of how long it can take for vegetables to go from the farm to you, once they are picked. To retain most of those nutrients, be sure to steam cook your vegetables, for as little time as necessary.
Besides plenty of fruits and vegetables, be sure to take a fiber supplement, such as Orange Flavored Colon Cleanse. Yes, it will make a big difference.
Limit Your Intake Of Carbs
All the media attention of low carb diets has successfully put most people into pro low-carb or anti low-carb camps without a lot of thinking involved. Whichever side you’re on, the bottom line is that reducing your carbohydrate intake when trying to loss fat will help. This is especially true of carbs sources like sugar and starches.
You should focus on non-processed carbs like natural oatmeal and vegetables. It can also help to vary your carb intake in the same way you vary your calorie intake mentioned above.
Stack Your Carbs
Eat most of your good carbs in your morning meals and in your post-workout shake (and pre-workout shake if you have one). This will help to stabilize your insulin levels and help you burn body fat for energy later in the day.
Forgo the pasta, potato or rice at your evening meals for lean proteins like fowl or fish, along with a side dish of veggies. Or enjoy your favorite protein shake recipe.
Eliminate Processed Foods:
Stick to natural foods. Forget anything processed that is just a bunch of chemicals. You’re putting poison in your body! I can’t stress this enough. Processed foods play a huge role in obesity as well as many other health problems such as diabetes, not to mention fat gain.
Increase Your Protein:
Increasing your protein intake will increase your metabolism and help to maintain your muscle mass, both key ingredients in losing fat and keeping it off.
Specific food combinations can help to burn calories by ramping up your metabolism. Eat carbs that are rich in fiber. They take longer to digest and you will feel “fuller” for longer periods of time.
Along with carbs rich in fiber, take in more protein. Your body burns more calories when you eat protein than it burns digesting either fats or carbohydrates.
Eating more protein to burn fat was confirmed in a study published in the American Journal of Physiology. One group was fed a high protein diet (just over one gram per pound of bodyweight per day) while the second group consumed a protein diet near equal to that of the RDA.
The group eating the high protein diet burned more fat than the group consuming protein near equal to the RDA.
Drink More Water
I know, I know, we’ve all heard this one over and over again. But how many of us really drink enough water? I’m talking at least 10 8 ounce glasses of water a day, minimum. You should really try to take in a full gallon of water each day.
First of all, our bodies are about 70% water. That should tell you something right there. And you all know that you can go much longer without food than you can without water.
The body needs a lot of water in order to maintain its daily functions efficiently. In addition, water helps to flush out harmful toxins, as well as prime the body for fat loss.
If your body isn’t getting enough water, it does everything it can to hold on to the water it does have. The problem with this is the way it holds onto the water. You see, about 70% of your muscle is made up of water. It helps to give your muscles that full, pumped look (along with glycogen).
However, if your body is not taking in enough water, that water is used for other things, leaving you bloated. And the way to get rid of that excess water, believe it or not, is to take in enough water.
This will rid you of that excess water weigh that bloats you, and begin to help your body run more efficiently and priming it to begin dropping body fat.
Once you begin taking in enough water, your body starts dropping weight, possibly 4 or 5 pounds in the first week. Now, this is mostly water weight.
However, doing so optimizes your bodily functions, allowing it to run more efficiently and start burning stored body fat for energy.
Have a Reward Day:
I know, it’s usually called a cheat day or cheat meal but to me that sounds like you’re doing something wrong. It’s too negative. Let’s call it a reward day for everything you are doing right.
First, giving yourself a reward day does not mean going so crazy that you sabotage everything you’re worked hard to achieve. As to whether it’s a meal, day, or even half a day, only you can decide. Only you know how far to go with this to keep you on track. Only you know if you’re better off with just a meal because an entire day will send you flying off the progress tracks, turning your reward day into a reward week. Eat what you want but eat normally. Don’t stuff yourself. Eat what you want until you are full and satisfied.
Even More Fiber on Treat Day:
Be sure to take a fiber supplement on treat day and get a lot of fiber that you might not be getting through reward day foods.
Get Your Green Tea:
A lot of studies (both human and animal) have shown green tea has great potential for elevating your metabolism and burning fat off your body.
One study (see below) looked at potential for green tea to stimulate thermogenesis and fat burning. This study had 10 healthy men spend periods of 24 hours in a metabolic testing chamber.
During these test sessions they took either 1) green tea extract that contained 150 mg of caffeine and 270 mg of epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG – the key active ingredient of green tea), 2) 150 mg of caffeine or 3) a placebo.
So what were the results? There was no difference in thermogenesis between the caffeine group and the placebo group. The green tea extract increased 24 hour metabolism by 4% compared to the placebo group. In this case, that translates into about 80 calories a day.
What does this mean for fat loss? It means green tea can definitely be used as an aid in your weight loss efforts. A metabolism increase of 4% is significant. Now, that leads me to the other side of weight loss products and supplements.
While green tea can play a real role in your weight loss efforts, because of the way these products are advertised, people have unrealistically high expectations of what these products can do for them.
If you have a resting metabolic rate of 2,000 calories per day, taking green tea can help you burn an extra 80 calories a day. This isn’t a lot but does equal 7 pounds over a years time. And this is 7 pounds for doing nothing.
If you take a real fat loss aid like green tea (and there are many weight loss products that don’t work at all – that’s another entry), have an understanding of what you can expect. And remember, you must have a complete fat loss plan in place.
If you’ve been gaining weight and are eating 100 more calories a day than you burn and you add green tea, guess what? You won’t lose weight, you’ll just slow down your weight gain.
Put an effective fat loss training program, consisting of a weight training routine, high intensity cardio and proper nutrition. Then, adding a quality supplement like green tea (or, even better, actual green tea) may help accelerate your fat loss efforts!
And don’t forget, unlike a lot of the weight loss supplements that don’t even work, taking green tea has numerous health benefits above and beyond the fat loss aspect.
Green Tea Study – (Dulloo AG, Duret C Rohrer D, Girardier L, Mensi N, Fathi M, Chantre P, Vandermander J, Efficacy of a green tea extract rich in catechin polyphenols and caffeine in increasing 24-hour energy expenditure and fat oxidation in humans. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 1999 Dec;70(6):1040-5)
Sugar + Fat = NO!
While you should avoid sugar as much as possible anyway, you do not want to combine fat and sugar in the same meal. Most junk foods and fast foods combine these together.
Read Food Labels
You may be surprised what’s in certain foods or how many calories are in a serving (a serving is NOT the entire bottle or bag).
Get More Sleep
Getting enough sleep on a regular basis is crucial to having your body perform optimally. Your body needs at least 7 to 8 hours of restful sleep each night. Your body repairs itself and recovers from your workouts while you sleep.
Without enough sleep you’re on your way to overtraining, feeling burnt out and sore, and getting sick often. SLEEP!
Don’t Go Shopping Without A List
This is huge. You must know beforehand what you need to get at the grocery store for two big reasons. If you don’t, you’ll end up making impulse buys of food you shouldn’t have in the house. Not if you want to stick to your nutrition program and show off your sexy abs. By having a list you can go directly to the food items you need and avoid all the junk food areas that the store tries to make you walk through since these are high profit items.
Eat Before You Go
Never go food shopping on an empty stomach. You’ll end up buying a lot of things you wouldn’t get otherwise.
Going food shopping while hungry is a great way to sabotage your health and fitness program.