It’s normal for us to want to get maximum benefits for minimum effort in the things we do, and it’s no different when we’re trying to lose weight.
The good news is that there are some lifestyle hacks – little changes that improve your life in a not-so-obvious way – that can help you lose weight without making any other changes! You don’t have to go on a strict diet or hardcore exercise plan; just make these 10 simple changes and you can see the dress sizes slip away.
1. Eat Eggs For Breakfast
The International Journal of Obesity published a study in 2008 that showed that people who ate eggs for breakfast lost more weight over time than people who instead ate a bagel with an equal number of calories. It’s believed that the high protein content in the eggs kept hunger at bay, reducing the number of snacks eaten later.
2. Hold The Mayo!
A serving of mayonnaise is 100 calories. Just cutting one serving per day can lead to weight loss of almost 10 pounds over the course of a year! It’s as easy as putting naturally low-calorie mustard on your sandwich instead.
3. Cut The Sugar From Your Coffee
Do you take your coffee with two sugars? That’s 32 calories – drink your coffee black and you drop three pounds a year, just like that. And that’s if you only drink one cup of coffee a day! Cut the sugar from two cups of coffee, and you double that.
4. Eat A Lighter Lunch
Instead of eating until you feel full, pack a small, portion-controlled lunch. A recent study from Cornell University said that people who did so ate an average of 250 calories less each day – that equal two pounds a month in weight loss!
5. Take A Brisk Walk Right After Meals
Of course we know that a brisk walk is great exercise, but a study done in Japan in 2011 showed that walking immediately upon finishing a meal was more effective for weight loss than waiting even as little as an hour.
Those who took a 30 minute walk right after finishing lunch and dinner lost more weight than those who walked later.
6. Chew Your Food Thoroughly
Most of us chew each bite about 15 times before swallowing; increase that to 40 times and you might eat as much as 12% less food at each meal.
The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition published a Chinese study that showed chewing more directly effects the production of ghrelin and CCK, two hormones that affect how hungry you feel.
You might think that 12 percent isn’t that much, but it could easily add up to a 25 pound weight loss over the course of a year!
7. Start Each Meal With A Glass Of Water
Remember how restaurants always used to start you off with a glass of water? That glass of water may do you more good than taking diet pills if you want to lose weight!
Those who drank a 16 ounce glass of water before meals ate, on average, 13% less than those who didn’t in a 2007 study that was published by the American Dietetic Association.
8. Brushing Your Tongue
Dieters have long known that brushing your teeth can help prevent snacking, but did you know that making sure to brush your tongue can help calm cravings for salty snacks?
Researchers have found that brushing the tongue improves our sense of taste, making us more sensitive to salty flavors; so you are satisfied by a smaller portion of the snack.
9. Avoid “Cheat” Days
There’s been a trend in dieting to observe the diet during the week then allow yourself to eat what you like during the weekends. But if you add that up, you come up with 12 days a month of being off your diet and not exercising!
Instead of looking forward to “cheat days”, create a diet and exercise plan that you can stick to all week long without feeling deprived. That way, when you do have an indulgence (restaurant night or ice cream with the kids) it won’t be such a big deal.
10. Take Some YOU Time
Stress can play a part in throwing your weight loss plans off course. The hormone cortisol is produced when you’re under stress, and it causes your body to actually horde fat.
Decrease your cortisol levels and you can lose the fat. Relax each day with a 10 minute meditation: sit quietly, close your eyes and repeat the word “relax” in your mind while taking slow deep breaths.