They say we only gain about 1-2 extra pounds each holiday season. The problem is, do we loose those extra pounds, or do we just accumulate them for next year? What’s the best way to lose weight?
Creamy, smooth beans, spiked with a dash of lemon and salt, are the best way I know to satisfy food cravings. This meal is fast and easy to make, meets the low-carb, high-protein diet that is so key today, while the creamy texture does make up for a lack of sugar and chocolate. My laptop is hot — I’ve been busy scanning the best scientific research to find the latest and greatest news on fat burning and weight loss. Here are 13 more ways to burn those calories and loose weight:
- Eat Hot Pepper. Researchers from the American Chemical Society (2007, March 5) found the natural compound that makes red pepper hot, can reduce the growth of fat cells
- Eat more soy beans. When soy consumption goes up, weight loss goes down. Elvira de Mejia, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign believes soy contains anorectic peptides that signal a feeling of satiety as well as peptides that boost the metabolism.
- Skip the Diet Sodas. Does this really come as a surprise? Diet Soda is an oxymoron. Now research proves what I’ve suspected all along. Drinking Diet Sodas does make you fat. Sharon P. Fowler, MPH, reported this in abstract 1058-P at the 2005 annual meeting of the American Diabetes Association in San Diego. No one can agree on why diet soft drinks do make you fatter, after all it is still only 99 percent water, but Ravi Dhingra, MD, an instructor in medicine at Harvard Medical School, thinks that the high level of sweetness “may lead to conditioning for a greater preference for intake of sweetened items.” This does not mean it’s OK to drink non-diet soft drinks.
- Walk to the store, take the stairs… We all strive to find the time to “get to the gym.” Sometimes we’re too busy to make it. You’re probably missing opportunities to burn calories all day long. Just look for them. All of that movement adds up. Don’t just walk. Walk faster!
- Drink a warm glass of water with lemon each morning. Before you have your coffee, before you have your breakfast, drink this glass of warm water with Lemon. Lemons act as a blood sugar stabilizer to keep metabolism up and weight loss moving along. Sometimes I add a dash of cayenne pepper — see above. Also, the lemon and pepper are full of vitamin C, boosting my immune system against colds.
- Drink ice cold water as your beverage of choice throughout the day. The cold water hits, and your body must work harder to warm you up; thus, burning more calories. Water is a great way to help you feel full all day long — an added benefit that will help you eat less.
- Make your own meals. American adults buy a meal or snack from a restaurant 5.8 times a week, on average, according to the National Restaurant Association. Restaurants are not interested in your diet, and quest for healthy meals. Who knows how much butter they put in that soup? Put the control of your food back in your own hands.
- Cook your vegetables in broth. The vegetables will taste much better, and you’ll need to add less butter for flavor.
- Get enough rest. Research from the University of Michigan C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital found that when children didn’t get enough sleep, their risk for weight gain went up.
- Eat all your meals — no skipping. Sipping meals, and going hungry really messes with your metabolism. When there is no food in your belly, your body reacts by slowing down your metabolism and creates fat — it’s trying to fatten you up to conserve energy for this long stretch of no food. When you start to eat again, your body’s metabolism is too slow to burn the food you’re eating. The result if more fat. Check our Dr. Weil’s post on fasting. Between meal snacks are important too. They can rev up your metabolism. Small high-protein snacks eaten more frequently throughout the day keep your metabolism running high, and help you burn calories.
- Keep junk food out of your house. If HoHos are there, you’ll eat them. Turn smashed beans and recipes like this chickpea sandwich into your new snacks. Use carrots for dipping!
- Make sure each snack and meal you eat has some protein. “Diets higher in protein [and] moderate in carbs, along with a lifestyle of regular exercise, have an excellent potential to help weight loss,” says University of Illinois protein researcher Donald Layman, PhD.
- Eat Whole Grain Cereals. Research says, eating primarily barley and rye can keep your blood sugar levels in check all day. Especially for breakfast. The affect of eating whole grains in the morning can keep you blood sugar levels down for 10 hours. This is called a low GI breakfast:
The glycemic index goes from 0 to 100.
Pure glucose has a GI of 100.
High GI foods have an index which is higher than 70.
Low GI foods have an index which is less than 55.