How to change your body and increase vitality
There’s no fast-acting trick to help you lose weight.
There’s no magical diet or workout trend that will help you get the body you want. Buzzworthy fitness plans might help you to lose some weight quickly, but those are short-term fixes at best. You won’t keep it off in the long run.
Achieving peak physical fitness is the result of adhering to a sensible diet and exercise routine – that is, lasting weight loss occurs when you change your lifestyle. Adapting your life to better fit your health and fitness needs takes time, but once you commit to these healthy weight loss tips, you’ll not only lose weight, but become more energetic, too.
Change your mindset about eating
There are so many reasons to eat. You eat because you enjoy the taste of food. You eat out of boredom. You eat during social events. But what if you shifted your mindset to view food for what it really is – fuel for your body? If you view food as a healing source of nutrition, instead of a way to pass time, you’ll begin to only eat when you really need to.
Failed diets may have led you to associate food with feelings of guilt and shame. When you sense this happening, put a stop to it. You’re not alone: Everyone makes mistakes on their health journey. If you eat late at night or enjoy an indulgent meal once in a while, don’t punish yourself for it. Instead, acknowledge the mistake and make a plan to do better tomorrow. There’s no point in holding in feelings of shame and self-hatred.
Look at what you’re putting into your body
The best weight loss tips are the ones that help you create a healthier body in a sustainable way. You should avoid these four poisons to not only lose weight, but to feel a greater sense of vitality:
1. Processed fats
Many foods in the American diet are loaded with processed fats. If you’re purchasing pre-made food, avoid items that contain too much saturated, polyunsaturated, monounsaturated and trans fatty acids in their nutritional information. Regularly consuming foods high in processed fats can result in high blood pressure, decreased digestive system functionalities and a build up of toxicity in the body.
2. Animal products
You don’t have to stop eating animal products altogether, but take a look at how much of your diet is currently animal based. It’s proven that a diet high in animal meat can lead to chronic illnesses like cancer, diabetes or heart disease. Search for ways to get protein from other sources such as plants, nuts and legumes. Try to eat meat just once a day, and when you do, look for an organic, antibiotic-free source.
3. Dairy products
Consuming too many dairy products can negatively impact your body. In fact, studies show that dairy products can ultimately lead to issues like cancer, kidney problems and osteoporosis. Less seriously, too many dairy products can be bad for the skin and cause respiratory issues. Swap out your milk and cheese for alternatives like soy, coconut or almond-based products.
4. Acidic foods
Many of us follow diets that are too acidic, which can ultimately affect the body’s delicate pH balance. Your blood needs to maintain a specific pH balance for it to deliver the right amount of oxygen throughout the body. A diet full of acidic foods leads to fatigue, inflammation and weight gain, among other issues. Highly acidic foods include items like meat, alcohol, refined carbohydrates, and caffeine and dairy products. Fruits and vegetables are high in alkalinity and easy to incorporate into your diet. You can also implement green supplements into your daily routine for a quick boost that benefits your body.
Eliminating or reducing your intake of these ingredients will help your body to function properly.
Additionally, by creating a diet more filled with plant-based, water-rich, alkaline foods, you’ll sustain a sense of fullness without packing on unnecessary pounds. Add more of the following to your daily intake and enjoy the benefits they provide:
1. ALKALINE FOODS
As mentioned before, your body needs alkaline foods like vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds to maintain its well-being – at least three-quarters of the food you eat should be alkaline in nature. Chard, arugula, spinach and other leafy greens are low in calories, filling and deliver nutrients like folate, nitrites and vitamin K. Alkaline fruits like papaya, cantaloupe and blueberries are loaded with antioxidants, which help prevent cell damage.
2. GOOD FATS
It’s natural to think you should cut out fats if you want to lose weight. Don’t fall into this trap. Your body needs healthy fat to build muscle and connective tissue, as well as absorb nutrients. Healthy fat also helps you produce and retain the energy you’ll need to continue losing weight. Avocado, olive oil and many nuts and seeds like chia and flax contain the good fats your body requires to function optimally.
The human body is mostly water – up to 60 percent – and it needs to be constantly replenished. Keep your body ultra-nourished by drinking water throughout the day, as well as consuming foods with a high water content. Celery, watermelon and spinach, among others, are largely comprised of water.
Adopt a sustainable fitness routine
One of the weight loss tips that many people overlook is that you need both an effective diet and workout plan to create long-term results. If you’re just starting out on your road to losing weight, you might be tempted to join an intense workout class or jump into a stringent routine that has you working out for hours on end. You might feel pumped up and invigorated when you begin, but you’ll quickly burn out. This is not sustainable. If you’ve been stationary for a long time, start with 30-minute routines once or twice a week and build up to more intensity over time.
Find a workout that works for your needs, and remember to take rest days when you need to. Aerobic exercises like walking, running, swimming, biking, skiing and aerobics classes are most effective for weight loss. Step up the frequency of your workouts gradually and take days off when you need them. The body needs exercise, but it also needs time to recover. And remember: You don’t have to do this alone. Exercising with friends or with your favorite music or podcast can prove especially motivating. By engaging in a physical activity that you actually enjoy, and giving yourself time off when you need to, you’ll be able to develop a routine that you can sustain in the long run.
You can even engage in a basic workout during a long day at work. Yes, getting out and engaging in physical activity is always the first choice, but in the event that you can’t, there are plenty of exercises you can perform at your desk. These exercises, while simple, allow you to strengthen your core, build endurance and raise your heart rate all without leaving your desk.
Focus on your breathing
When you’re stressed out, you’re not only harming your mind, but you’re potentially causing your body to hold on to things it doesn’t need. Your lymphatic system is responsible for transporting fluids throughout the body and regulating your immune system. Unlike your heart, your lymphatic system doesn’t have a natural means of pumping itself – but physical activity can stimulate it. Ensure you’re lymphasizing by not only exercising, but regulating your breath. Strive to take 10 power breaths three times throughout the day, every day. Inhale for eight seconds, hold the breath for 30 seconds and then exhale purposefully for 16 seconds.
Research shows that this can stimulate your lymphatic system and ultimately help your body to release harmful fluids that contain bacteria, waste and toxins. Losing these fluids can help with your weight loss efforts.
Good breathing also benefits the mind. Power breaths ensure that you’re properly oxygenated, which allows for a more relaxed mental state. Proper relaxation leads to a more energized body that can fight fatigue and pain – a body that will lose weight faster.
Weight loss isn’t something that happens over night – it’s the result of changing your habits and mindset. You shouldn’t be on a mission to change your body simply because you want to look a certain way, but because by being the healthiest version of yourself, you know you will better be able to accomplish your goals and enjoy a renewed sense of vitality.