The average person works out for two to three hours a week – but it’s the remaining 165 hours not spent sweating it out that really matter when it comes to losing weight and keeping fit.
“It’s what you do during that time that is far more important and far more impactful than anything you do in the gym,” Delhi-based dietitian Simrann Saini explained.
Here are 10 healthy, expert-approved and science-backed choices you can make every day to make those 165 hours count every week.
1 They don’t call it the most important meal of the day for nothing. Eating a breakfast that is a healthy balance of protein and fibre like eggs with fruit and whole-wheat toast, kickstarts your metabolism and prevents you from over-eating throughout the day. A study from the American Journal of Epidemiology found that people who skipped breakfast were 4.5 times more likely to be obese.
2 Almost 60% of your body is water, which makes it vital to every important metabolic process. Need we say anymore? You’ve probably heard it a billion and a half times, ‘drink eight glasses or 1 to 1.5 liters of water every day? Do that and cut 200 calories off daily.
3 Lack of sleep can lead to increase in appetite, irregular cravings for high-calorie foods, low enthusiasm as well as enhance your risk of developing heart diseases. Getting a good night’s sleep has major health benefits, including healthy body weight. Don’t underestimate your snooze time.
4 Chewing more and eating slowly makes the body ingest less calories. One method to make sure you chew your food thoroughly: Stop to eat. Eating on the go can make you inhale a tonne of calories before your body has time to figure out it’s full.
5 Eating protein keeps your metabolism running on high even when you’re resting or your body isn’t in motion. Proteins keep you full for a longer duration and prevent you from overeating. For maximum health and weight-loss results, include protein in all of your snacks and meals. Example – low-fat dairy products, eggs.
6 A chemical compound called capsaicin, found in chilli peppers, acts as an appetite suppressant. It boosts metabolism and fight inflammation. You can add healthy spices like black pepper to your meals.
7 When you stress, your body releases cortisol, a hormone that promotes abdominal fat storage. If you’re anxious or stressed at work or in personal life, it’s time to incorporate activities like meditation and yoga into your day.
8 Taking a walk after a meal can help you lose weight, and not just because walking burns calories, but post-meal walks can lower your blood sugar levels and prevent your body from storing fat.
9 Eating post 8pm makes sure you ingest the most calories and carry the most body fat. The simple method to stop mass fat from storing in the body is to stop eating three hours before you hit the sack. Then, while you’re sound asleep, your body is programmed to burn fat.
10 Weighing yourself regularly can actually help you stay in shape. Keeping a track on your weight keeps you aware of how fit you are and also prevents denial regarding weight gain. It is, after all, pretty hard to ignore the needle going too far to the right on a weighing scale.
Follow the writer on Twitter: @SanyaHoon