10 Tips for Losing Weight That Actually Make a Difference
I was recently sent yet another new diet book—after all, it's the new year and what would the start of a year be without a renewed interest in weight loss?!!). While I'm often loathe to get another book that touts some trendy, overly-abstemious diet plan, this one caught my attention because it's written by a nutritionist I've interviewed many times, and who is so entirely sane about food, weight and diet that I can't help but listen carefully when she talks. No gimmicks, no extremism, nothing overly flashy.
Perhaps you've seen Keri Glassman, MS, RD on The Today Show, Access Hollywood Live, or read her advice in Women's Health magazine (where's she's a contributing editor), her new book is called The New You and Improved Diet.
There's a full 8-day meal plan in the book, plus invaluable advice about eating well, exercise and generally treating yourself well. But since reading diet books might not be everyone's cup of tea, here are 10 things I took away from Glassman's book—little snippets of advice and factoids that can help anyone be healthier every single day.
1. In a typical diet, food provides about 20% of our daily fluid intake. While I've always known that obvious things like watermelon are brimming with water, here are some less obvious, but equally healthy foods that have incredibly high water content: Cauliflower (92% water! Who knew!?), yellow squash (94% water!), broccoli, (91%) and spinach (92%).
2. If you hate counting sit-ups, tallying laps around a track, or how many deep-knee lunges you've done (or if you have a tendency, to um...cheat), skip the counting in favor of timed intervals. Doing as much as you can in a certain time period (i.e. 20 seconds or one minute) can be a more intense workout, which will burn more calories, work more muscles and save time.
3. At night, after you've cleaned up after dinner, make a conscious decision to shut down the kitchen—clicking the lights off and everything. It's sort of like brushing your teeth after eating...once you've closed that door and turned off the lights, you're less likely to storm back in.
4. Don't just leave junk food around or hold onto foods you don't like just because. Take a few minutes to clean out your pantry—getting rid of anything that might tempt you or that you wont use. Donate what you don't want anymore
5. Keep a deck of cards on the kitchen counter so you never lose sight of what a proper serving of protein should look like.
6. Once a week, set aside 20 minutes for a "chopathon"—slice up veggies and store in clear containers so cooking and snacking are quick and easy.
7. If you have a craving but aren't sure if you're hungry, set your phone or any timer for 10 minutes and reevaluate your hunger after you hear the ding. You might have been bored, tired, annoyed, etc.
8. Before sitting down to a meal at a restaurant, empty that water glass—twice. Research has found that people who drank as much before eating ended up taking in way fewer calories at the meal.
9. If you have a hard time remembering to drink enough water, set a timer on your computer or phone to remind you every so often.
10. [This is perhaps my most favorite tip, or mantra, of all—something to literally tack up on the 'fridge.] To keep slip ups, set-backs and anything else from derailing you, remember: "EVERY MEAL IS MONDAY MORNING."