20 diet tips that actually work
- Add some zest- Flat Tummy Club Diet author Kate Adams recommends adding lemon zest, juice and peel to meals: ‘Pectin, found in lemon peel, is a good source of fibre that helps you feel satisfied after a meal and keeps your blood sugar in a nice balance.’
- Help your hormones- ‘High oestrogen levels slow your metabolism and cause sugar cravings,’ says Holistic Health specialist Alyssa Burns-hill. ‘Try to eat phytonutrient DIM-rich foods like broccoli and kale,’ she says.
- Cuddle up close- Stress can lead to tummy fat due to excess levels of the hormone cortisol. Dr Marilyn Glenville says hugging can help. ‘Scientists found that hugging can reduce stress because it helps to raise oxytocin levels’ she explains.
- Spice it high- ‘Eating chilli consistently over a long period helps you lose weight,’ it has been found that capsacin in chillies boosts the metabolism, tells the body to burn fat and reduces appetite.
- Try the 5:2 day diet- Patrick Holford, author of The Low-GL Diet Bible believes this new trend is more than a fad. ‘Eating 500 to 800 calories to days a week and eating normally the rest of the time can lead to rapid weight loss. In order to trigger such changes in your body, you initially need four weeks of dieting every other day,’ he says.
- You can exercise for less time- ‘High-intensity exercise for short periods is far more effective than hour on the treadmill,’ says Time Hart, personal trainer. ‘Choose any exercise that gets your heart beating and work hard for 30 seconds, then rest for 30 seconds. Follow this cycle for 10 minutes.’
- Fake fullness- When hunger strikes, Neil Johnson, Personal Trainer and Fitness Expert advises you to trick your tummy. ‘Brush your teeth if you feel the need to snack, as this sends a signal to your brain that you are done eating for the day or won’t be eating for a while.’
- Try rye- Simply switching your white toast for rye could make a difference. ‘Eating rye bread in place of ordinary white bread helps to increase satiety – feelings of fullness –suppressing hunger and the desire to eat,’ explains Medical Nutritionist and author Dr Sarah Brewer.
- Take up acupuncture-‘I use acupuncture to reduce the appetite, and help the stomach and spleen work more effectively,’ says Tazmin Freeman ‘It reduces bloating and appetite, promotes energy and calms anxiety, which drive mindless eating.
- Start your day with an egg- Eggs are a good breakfast choice, they are high in protein, low in fat and calories and rich in nutrients like iron and choline, which boost the flow of cholesterol and fat through the liver.
- Sleep well- Sleep has a lot to do with weight loss than you may think, when our sleep is disrupted the hormones that are responsible for stimulating appetite get thrown off balance, causing a constant feeling of hunger and making it very difficult to lose weight! Aim to get a full 8 hours a night, but no more as oversleeping can also be disruptive.
- Use black pepper- Finely grind 7 black peppercorns, mix with ½ tsp lemon juice and add ½ cup of warm water. If you drink this every morning before breakfast it will help to reduce your food cravings.
- Get some Glutamine- Sugar addicts are advised to try glutamine. Glutamine is an amino acid that squashes sugar cravings. It can be found in most health-food shops. Simple dissolve one tablespoon in a small glass of water when you get a sugar craving.’
- Pack in the protein- Having protein with every meal helps make you feel full longer, this is most important with a carbohydrate meal, as protein slows the release of sugar into your blood, preventing an energy crash.
- Detox your life- Your body wants to keep toxins like caffeine away from vital organs, so it wraps them in fat and stores them near the surface- often around the hips and stomach. Simply cutting out the toxins will lead to a huge improvement in your shape.
- Ditch your water bottle– In her book Pilates On the Go Margot Campbell advises incorporating exercise into everyday activities: ‘Instead of bringing a full bottle of water to your desk every morning, fetch some water when you need it.’
- Chew, chew and chew again– Bloating is a sign that you’re not digesting your food properly. As the first stage of digestion begins in the mouth, instead of bolting your food down, aim to have chewed it into a liquid mush before swallowing it.
- Get in quick– Be the first to order in a restaurant. Studies show that we’re often swayed by the choices of others when we eat out, so always order your not-too-naughty choice first.
- Eat raw food– Weight loss is a natural benefit of a raw food diet. Raw foods such as carrot, celery and tomatoes are free from refined sugars and saturated fat and are high in the essential fats and vegetable proteins that assist fat burning.
- Track the calories– According to the Goodtoknow Diet Club, keeping track of your calories can improve your chances of losing weight by up to 50%
Do you have any helpful tips you would like to share with us?