MANY people believe that the only way to lose weight is through gruelling gym workouts and strict diets.
However, top dietitian Susie Burrell has now revealed that blitzing body fat doesn’t need to be as taxing as that.
And, writing in her blog, she emphasises that extreme diets “rarely keep the kilos at bay long term”.
Instead, Susie, from Sydney, Australia, says that there are five simple lifestyle changes you can make to maximise your weight loss in 2020 – without you having to work too hard at all.
Here, the diet expert reveals the approaches to your diet and nutrition which will support weight loss…
1. Focus on time of day eating
Limiting the amount of time you’re eating throughout the day will help you shed those pesky pounds.
Susie says: “A growing body of research shows that when we limit our eating to just eight to ten hours each day, or not eating for 14 to 16 hours of each day is a strategy that appears to support weight control minus any specific calorie counting or dietary rules.
“Committing to longer periods of time minus any calories appears to help reset some of the hormones that regulate fat metabolism in the body.
Limiting the number of total hours we eat naturally controls calorie intake
“In real life terms this translates into having an early dinner, or having your first meal later in the day as to support a longer overnight fast.
“Here the only thing you need to pay attention to is what time you are eating each day, as limiting the number of total hours we eat naturally controls calorie intake.”
2. Choose whole foods
Eating whole foods will help you slash your daily calorie intake and blitz body fat, according to Susie.
She says: “It has been shown that consuming whole foods – such as a steak as opposed to mincemeat; or wholegrain bread rather than white results in a higher calorie burn than the more processed food alternatives.
“This means that the more natural the state of the food you eat, the better it is for metabolism.
“This means enjoying vegetables and fruit whole, with the skin intact; fillets of fish, meat and chicken and whole food snacks such as nuts, fruit and yoghurt rather than processed biscuits, bars and cakes.
“Choosing whole foods also tends to reduce calorie intake overall and we reduce our intake of processed foods that tend to have added sugars and fats.”
3. Focus on vegetables
Adding more fruit and vegetables to your diet can provide you with speedy weight loss with results that are much more likely to last than fad diets.
Susie says: “Diets are often focused around what we should not be eating; need to cut back on and depending on the diet the food groups to avoid.
“Focusing on what we should not be doing can often work in reverse, resulting in an increased focus on the tempting, higher calorie foods we ideally need to cut back on to control calorie intake.
5 reasons to avoid fad diets, according to the NHS
The NHS has shared five reasons as to why following fad diets may not be a good way to lose weight.
- Some diets make you ill – crash diets make you feel very unwell and unable to function properly. Because they’re nutritionally unbalanced, crash diets can lead to long-term poor health.
- Excluding foods is dangerous – cutting out certain food groups altogether could prevent you getting the important nutrients and vitamins your body needs to function properly.
- Low-carb diets can be high in fat – while you may lose weight on these types of diets, they’re often high in protein and fat, which can make you ill.
- Detox diets don’t work – these are based on the idea that toxins build up in the body and can be removed by eating, or not eating, certain things. But there’s no evidence that toxins build up in our bodies. If they did, we’d feel very ill.
- The 5:2 diet and other fad diets are far-fetched – If followed over long periods, these diets can be very unbalanced and bad for your health. You may lose weight in the short term, but it’s much better to lose weight gradually and to be healthy.
“When we focus on boosting our overall vegetable intake, the focus is on eating more, not less and the more salad and vegetables we eat, the lower our overall calorie intake tends to be, supporting weight control.
“Think about adding vegetable sides or a juice to your breakfast, salads and soups for lunches and at least two to three cups of mixed salad and vegetables with your evening meal to significantly boost your vegetable intake.”
4. Have a treat
Susie firmly believes that allowing yourself to have a little treat every now and again will help you stick to your diet.
“Diets often fail because we are lured by our favourite sweet treat, glass of wine or fail to factor in eating out as part of our regular dietary regime,” Susie says.
Diets often fail because we are lured by our favourite sweet treat
“When we factor these foods into our regular meal plan, in controlled volumes, you are less likely to experience the feelings of deprivation that can be associated with stricter diets and more likely to be able to stick to your healthy eating plan the rest of the time.
“This translates into enjoying a meal out regularly, factoring in a portion controlled sweet treat after dinner, or giving yourself permission to enjoy a glass or two of wine a couple of nights each week depending on your preferred style of indulgence.”
5. Take your food
Preparing your own food rather than buying it will help you cut down on your calorie intake – and ultimately lose weight.
“Whenever we buy a meal away from home – a café lunch; food court sandwich or a home delivered meal it is likely you will be consuming at least one/three more calories and fat than the equivalent meal you would prepare for yourself at home,” Susie says.
“When it comes to weight control this meals that more you are in control of your calorie intake, the lower your calorie intake is likely to be.
“This means packing more lunches, ordering less dinners at home and eating breakfast at home rather than indulging in a café treat more than occasionally as a general strategy that supports weight control.”
For more of Susie’s diet and nutrition tips and advice, you can visit her blog here.