Despite what you might hear, there is no fix-all solution that comes in a pill for transforming your body and getting to an ideal body weight.
Some people consider excess weight to be their greatest obstacle to an ideal appearance. It's for this reason many companies sell extreme, sometimes unsafe, weight loss products.
However, it's important to achieve weight loss via healthy pathways. Anything depriving your body of needed nutrients and energy becomes a problem.
If you're ready to use healthy (and low-risk) methods to lose weight and transform your body for the better, here are five:
1. Eat a balance of healthy foods
Nutritional scientists have found intake (what you eat) impacts overall weight more than output (an exercise program). According to Shawn M. Talbot, a nutritional biochemist, “weight loss is generally 75 percent diet and 25 percent exercise.”
Experts who analyzed more than 700 weight loss studies found the most impactful short term results come from consuming a healthy diet.
What makes up a healthy diet? Focus on a real, whole food template. Consume plenty of fresh vegetables, fruits, lean proteins and healthy fats. Avoid prepackaged meals because they tend to contain sodium, sugars and unhealthy preservatives.
Eating healthy is the first step to reaching your ideal weight. Remember, healthy and lasting weight loss includes both healthy eating and a healthy exercise routine.
2. Drink enough water
Drinking water aids every function in your body, including your ability to burn fat. According to one study in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, healthy subjects who drank enough water every day increased their metabolic rate by 30 percent.
Another reason to drink water is it is a no-calorie beverage that provides optimal hydration. Energy drinks, caffeinated and carbonated beverages, and high sugar fruit juices are all high in calories and low in nutrients.
3. Exercise smartly
Lots of people exercise, but not everyone knows how to use exercise to help shape their bodies. There’s a difference between lifting weights and going for a jog each day, and the results will show in different ways. If you’re trying to lose excess fat, focus on a strength and cardio combination.
You can also optimize your workout time by using what’s referred to as intervals. The American College of Sports Medicine suggests brief periods of intense effort during a regular workout to increase your metabolic rate. If you walk or jog for 30 minutes, add 3-5 short sprints or similar bursts of exercise. These intervals should leave you sweating.
4. Get enough sleep
Your body needs sleep to perform many functions, including metabolizing calories or weight loss. Columbia University and others have conducted studies showing a lack of sleep results in weight gain.
Lack of sleep also causes your body to feel stressed, which triggers a fight or flight response that can contribute to weight gain. Exhaustion and sleep loss give people the munchies, resulting in late night snacking of typically unhealthy foods.
Avoid snacking late at night and after dinner. Stick to an appropriate bedtime, and don’t stay up late watching TV or using your mobile device. Sleep is an often-overlooked need, but it’s amazing what getting enough sleep does for your body.
5. Look into noninvasive procedures
With all the above methods in place, some people still struggle to lose excess belly fat, or those extra five pounds that keep you from looking your best. If you’ve done all you can and still are unable to lose fat in certain areas, consider noninvasive procedures such as CoolSculpting.
CoolSculpting uses basic scientific principles to kill unwanted fat cells, without the risk of an incision or lengthy recovery. If you’re looking for an effective and safe body shaping solution, contact certified CoolSculpting provider Dr. Amy Brenner today.