To lose weight naturally, you’ll want to consider three components: what you eat, how you move, and when you eat. They’re listed in order of importance, starting with what is at the end of your fork.
What you eat
What you eat is key when it comes to weight loss. In fact, even when I was training for my first half marathon I didn’t lose any weight whatsoever. Only when I adopted a whole-food, plant-based vegan diet did the weight shed naturally. I’m not unique. The power of plants is tremendous. When done right, this menu lets you eat as much as you want of the right foods—so you don’t feel deprived.
Whole plant foods, rich in fiber, can help you feel fuller. The fiber in whole plant foods create short chain fatty acids that influence your hunger and satiety hormones.
Calorie density also plays a role in weight loss. Aim to eat a diet rich in vegetables, mushrooms, and fruits. Enjoy beans, lentils, and intact whole grains. Minimize high calorie-dense foods like nuts and seeds, and avocado. Avoid oil, refined grains, and sugar. These foods will likely hinder your ability to reduce weight naturally.
Finally, consider eating a broth-based soup before you eat a main meal. Studies show that it may promote weight loss by reducing the total caloric intake for that meal, while leaving you satisfied. Check out this Detox Beet Soup recipe.
How you move
After you’ve dialed in what you eat, regular physical activity will further aid in weight loss. The recommended guidelines are to get in at least 30 minutes of cardiovascular physical activity 5 days a week. This is where to start if you’ve not been consistent with exercise.
But with exercise more is better. To lose weight, 60 minutes of cardio a day five days a week will yield better results. If that sounds like too much to carve out of your day, start with the minimum. And find something you love doing. When you’re engaged in something you love doing, it won’t feel like a hardship to increase the amount of time spent being active. Consider asking a friend or family member to join you, both for fun and so you’re accountable.
When you eat
Intermittent fasting (or time-restricted feeding) is a great way to build on your new conscious attitude toward what you eat and how you move. The most common form of intermittent fasting is referred to as an 8:16. You eat within an 8-hour window and fast for 16 hours each day. That could mean you eat between 10 am and 6 pm, and consume only water from 6 pm to 10 am. Of course, you’re probably asleep for 7 to 8 hours of the 16 hours—that makes it easier!
You can also follow the adage, “Breakfast like a king (or queen), lunch like a prince (or princess) and dinner like a pauper.” This just means that dinner is the lightest meal of the day. Some studies suggest that this can aid in weight loss because front-loading your calorie consumption in the earliest part of the day reduces cravings. Bonus: a heavier breakfast also fuels that new exercise routine much more efficiently.
Maximize results to reduce weight naturally
Putting all three of these in place can help you to reduce weight naturally. Of course, check with your healthcare provider before starting an exercise program or even a dietary change, especially if you’re taking medications.