The 10 Rules of Weight Loss You Should Always Follow

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Kat Borchart

There’s no magic bullet or secret pill ¡ª sustainable weight loss does not happen overnight. If want to take off weight and keep it off for good, some major healthy lifestyle changes need to occur in order for your results to last. Here are the 10 rules to live by every day.

1. Thou Shalt Eat Breakfast

Healthy foodie trends may come and go, but breakfast is a must. People who eat breakfast regularly lose more weight, since it jump-starts your metabolism, helping your body to burn more fat. With that said, any old breakfast won’t do! Follow this nutritionist-approved weight-loss breakfast formula to choose yours wisely and start seeing results sooner.

2. Thou Shalt Keep It Clean

One of the very fastest ways to see and feel results is to cut out processed foods and fill up on fresh foods straight from the Earth. Whenever possible, opt for whole, natural foods and follow our clean eating dos and don’ts. Once you clean up your diet and cut out the junk, you’ll start feeling and seeing enormous changes. After a few weeks, you’ll wonder how you ever ate any other way.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Jenny Sugar

3. Thou Shalt Control Portions

Even when you choose healthy foods, overeating these good-for-you choices can sabotage your weight-loss goals, and you might not even realize you’re overdoing it. Use this handy printable chart to start learning about just how much constitutes one serving, or instead of eyeballing your meals, pick up some portion-control products so you can be as precise as possible.

4. Thou Shalt Welcome a Sweaty Workout Session

When it comes to working out and losing weight, 15 minutes a few times a week is simply not enough. For her clients who want to lose weight, Michelle Bridges of The Biggest Loser Australia recommends working out “six days a week, ideally for 50 to 60 minutes at a time,” and you can’t be afraid to go intense, feel the burn, and build up a sweat. Your clothes should not be dry when you leave the gym! Not every workout has to be a crazy sweat session, but Michelle says three of your workouts every week should be “hard” exercise like interval training in order to see results.

5. Thou Shalt Set Minigoals

As you move along on your weight-loss journey, there is so much more to revel in beyond a tiny number on the scale. Setting specific and personal minigoals like training for a race, slipping into the old pair of jeans, or grabbing heavier weights will help you stay connected and realize just how much progress you’re making every day. These may seem like small wins, but they’re absolutely worth celebrating.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Kat Borchart

6. Thou Shalt Drink (More) Water

You’d be surprised just how many people confuse hunger with dehydration. Keeping your water bottle full all day long keeps your body in tip-top shape and helps you steer clear of unnecessary snacking. To maximize your water intake for weight loss, dietitian Julie Upton, MS, RD, recommends “drinking about half of your body weight in fluid ounces of water (or other calorie-free beverages). Cold water provides a brief shock to your metabolism, raising it by about 30 percent so that over the course of a day, your body will burn about 100 more calories.”

7. Thou Shalt Plan Ahead

Occasionally enjoying a sweet treat or special meal out are essential parts of any sustainable weight-loss plan, but it only works when you’re realistic about your indulgences and learn to plan ahead. Heading to the beach next weekend? Keep your diet extraclean leading up to your getaway. This way you have a little more wiggle room to enjoy as you please. We’re big believers in the 80/20 rule over here; eighty percent of the time you keep your diet clean and the other 20 percent of the day you’re able to indulge freely. The math is simple: if you eat three square meals a day, three of those meals are the 20 percent of your week up for grabs.

Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Kat Borchart

8. Thou Shalt Strength Train

If you were fed the myth that strength training impedes weight loss and messes with results, it’s time to change your tune. Strength training builds muscle mass while boosting your metabolism. You might not tip the scale, but strength training is where the real resculpting of your body happens. Once you start lifting and moving through bodyweight moves at home, you’ll be hooked.

9. Thou Shalt Rest Well

Getting adequate sleep every night makes sure you have the energy to power through your workout, but it’s also been proven to help curb a ravenous appetite, since those who get adequate sleep eat an average of 300 calories less than those who don’t. Sleep also surprisingly fights against “fat” genes. In one study that looked at twins, the twin who slept longer had a lower BMI than the twin who did not. In short? Wind down and get to bed earlier. Your body thanks you in advance for supporting all its hard work in the kitchen and the gym.

10. Thou Shalt Remain Positive

When you treat yourself with kindness, you’re able to bounce back faster and stay on track for longer. Keep a healthy sense of humor, leave room to laugh, and take it day by day. Every experience won’t be perfect, but when you’re kind to yourself and keep a positive outlook, this whole weight-loss thing will feel a lot easier.

Related: 100 Simple Ways to Lose Weight

The 10 Rules of Weight Loss You Should Always Follow

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Kat Borchart

There’s no magic bullet or secret pill sustainable weight loss does not happen overnight. If want to take off weight and keep it off for good| some major healthy lifestyle changes need to occur in order for your results to last. Here are the 10 rules to live by every day.

1. Thou Shalt Eat Breakfast

Healthy foodie trends may come and go| but breakfast is a must. People who eat breakfast regularly lose more weight| since it jump-starts your metabolism| helping your body to burn more fat. With that said| any old breakfast won’t do! Follow this nutritionist-approved weight-loss breakfast formula to choose yours wisely and start seeing results sooner.

2. Thou Shalt Keep It Clean

One of the very fastest ways to see and feel results is to cut out processed foods and fill up on fresh foods straight from the Earth. Whenever possible| opt for whole| natural foods and follow our clean eating dos and don’ts. Once you clean up your diet and cut out the junk| you’ll start feeling and seeing enormous changes. After a few weeks| you’ll wonder how you ever ate any other way.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Jenny Sugar

3. Thou Shalt Control Portions

Even when you choose healthy foods| overeating these good-for-you choices can sabotage your weight-loss goals| and you might not even realize you’re overdoing it. Use this handy printable chart to start learning about just how much constitutes one serving| or instead of eyeballing your meals| pick up some portion-control products so you can be as precise as possible.

4. Thou Shalt Welcome a Sweaty Workout Session

When it comes to working out and losing weight| 15 minutes a few times a week is simply not enough. For her clients who want to lose weight| Michelle Bridges of The Biggest Loser Australia recommends working out “six days a week| ideally for 50 to 60 minutes at a time|” and you can’t be afraid to go intense| feel the burn| and build up a sweat. Your clothes should not be dry when you leave the gym! Not every workout has to be a crazy sweat session| but Michelle says three of your workouts every week should be “hard” exercise like interval training in order to see results.

5. Thou Shalt Set Minigoals

As you move along on your weight-loss journey| there is so much more to revel in beyond a tiny number on the scale. Setting specific and personal minigoals like training for a race| slipping into the old pair of jeans| or grabbing heavier weights will help you stay connected and realize just how much progress you’re making every day. These may seem like small wins| but they’re absolutely worth celebrating.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Kat Borchart

6. Thou Shalt Drink (More) Water

You’d be surprised just how many people confuse hunger with dehydration. Keeping your water bottle full all day long keeps your body in tip-top shape and helps you steer clear of unnecessary snacking. To maximize your water intake for weight loss| dietitian Julie Upton| MS| RD| recommends “drinking about half of your body weight in fluid ounces of water (or other calorie-free beverages). Cold water provides a brief shock to your metabolism| raising it by about 30 percent so that over the course of a day| your body will burn about 100 more calories.”

7. Thou Shalt Plan Ahead

Occasionally enjoying a sweet treat or special meal out are essential parts of any sustainable weight-loss plan| but it only works when you’re realistic about your indulgences and learn to plan ahead. Heading to the beach next weekend? Keep your diet extraclean leading up to your getaway. This way you have a little more wiggle room to enjoy as you please. We’re big believers in the 80/20 rule over here; eighty percent of the time you keep your diet clean and the other 20 percent of the day you’re able to indulge freely. The math is simple: if you eat three square meals a day| three of those meals are the 20 percent of your week up for grabs.

Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Kat Borchart

8. Thou Shalt Strength Train

If you were fed the myth that strength training impedes weight loss and messes with results| it’s time to change your tune. Strength training builds muscle mass while boosting your metabolism. You might not tip the scale| but strength training is where the real resculpting of your body happens. Once you start lifting and moving through bodyweight moves at home| you’ll be hooked.

9. Thou Shalt Rest Well

Getting adequate sleep every night makes sure you have the energy to power through your workout| but it’s also been proven to help curb a ravenous appetite| since those who get adequate sleep eat an average of 300 calories less than those who don’t. Sleep also surprisingly fights against “fat” genes. In one study that looked at twins| the twin who slept longer had a lower BMI than the twin who did not. In short? Wind down and get to bed earlier. Your body thanks you in advance for supporting all its hard work in the kitchen and the gym.

10. Thou Shalt Remain Positive

When you treat yourself with kindness| you’re able to bounce back faster and stay on track for longer. Keep a healthy sense of humor| leave room to laugh| and take it day by day. Every experience won’t be perfect| but when you’re kind to yourself and keep a positive outlook| this whole weight-loss thing will feel a lot easier.

Related: 100 Simple Ways to Lose Weight

Andie Lost 40 Pounds by Being a ‘Fitness Slut’

After having three kids, founder of the healthy-living blog Maybe I Will Andie Thueson felt controlled by food. She knew it was time for a change, so she started eating healthier and working out. Patience was her key to success and she lost 40 pounds and has kept it off.

Andie: Before

POPSUGAR: What made you decide to start?

Andie Thueson: After I had my third child, I was bigger than I had ever been and I was completely controlled by food. I was tired all the time and as much as I wanted to blame that on being a mom to three, I knew it was because I wasn’t working out or eating right. I was putting everyone else’s needs above my own. As much as I love my children, I knew that if they were going to get the best me possible, I needed to change. I needed to start working out and I needed to finally get control of my relationship with food and feed my body with healthy good foods instead of cheap processed garbage.

PS: What’s your favorite way to work out?

AT: I LOVE to wake up and work out! It just sets the tone for my entire day. I’m what you would call a fitness slut; I don’t stick to any one way to work out; I LOVE mixing it up and trying new things!PS: What’s your weekly exercise schedule?AT: I work out Monday through Friday at 6 a.m. for about an hour before I rush home and get my kids ready for school. On the weekends I am a little more lax and fit my workout in sometime in the morning.

Andie: After

PS: How do you keep workouts exciting?

AT: As I previously mentioned, I love to mix things up! I recently started listening to podcasts during my workouts, so I am bettering my bod and my mind all at the same time. It has been a fun way to mix things up and keep my workout exciting.

PS: How much weight have you lost?

AT: I’ve lost 40 pounds.

PS: What was the first big difference, other than the number on the scale, that really made you feel proud and excited?

AT: Once the weight came off, I became so much more confident and more comfortable in my own skin. I found that exercise was the best part of my day and it really helped me to be a more centered and energetic person. I never thought that sweating and pushing myself so hard at the gym would become a part of who I was.

Andie: Before

PS: How do you track your weight loss?

AT: I typically weigh myself once a week, just to make sure that I stay in “my range.”

PS: What’s a typical day of meals and snacks?

AT: I usually will start eating around 11 or 12 and will eat a meal with lots of veggies and lean protein and will eat a snack or two as needed and then a well-balanced dinner and then I will close the kitchen around 7 p.m. and be done eating. I factor in some type of treat every day! I just make sure it fits into my calories and macros!

PS: What’s the range of calories you eat per day?AT: I like to stay around 1500 to 1600.

Andie: After

PS: What are the healthy staples that are always in your fridge? AT: I love snap peas and guacamole packs! They are so easy to grab and go and are super filling! I also LOVE Quest Bars! They are like eating a candy bar and are a savored treat!

PS: How do you strategize for meals out? AT: I always try to either split my meal or eat half and box the rest. Eating out is supposed to be fun! When you add too many restrictions, I think you are setting yourself up for failure. My biggest advice is just to watch portions! Enjoy your food and STOP when you are full.

PS: What advice do you have for anyone starting out on a weight-loss journey? AT: Have patience with yourself! When I first started I wanted to lose all this weight fast, so I was super restrictive and I demonized “bad foods” I would do OK for a bit, but inevitably I would cave! But instead of eating a healthy, normal-sized portion, I would binge ¡ª it was like I could not stop myself! So I shifted my mindset and became friends with food and instead of putting foods on lists of “naughty” or “nice,” I began to eat for my health and better energy and would enjoy a treat here and there for fun! This change in mindset made all the difference for me.

Image Source: Andie Thueson

Andie Lost 40 Pounds by Being a ‘Fitness Slut’

After having three kids| founder of the healthy-living blog Maybe I Will Andie Thueson felt controlled by food. She knew it was time for a change| so she started eating healthier and working out. Patience was her key to success and she lost 40 pounds and has kept it off.

Andie: Before

POPSUGAR: What made you decide to start?

Andie Thueson: After I had my third child| I was bigger than I had ever been and I was completely controlled by food. I was tired all the time and as much as I wanted to blame that on being a mom to three| I knew it was because I wasn’t working out or eating right. I was putting everyone else’s needs above my own. As much as I love my children| I knew that if they were going to get the best me possible| I needed to change. I needed to start working out and I needed to finally get control of my relationship with food and feed my body with healthy good foods instead of cheap processed garbage.

PS: What’s your favorite way to work out?

AT: I LOVE to wake up and work out! It just sets the tone for my entire day. I’m what you would call a fitness slut; I don’t stick to any one way to work out; I LOVE mixing it up and trying new things!PS: What’s your weekly exercise schedule?AT: I work out Monday through Friday at 6 a.m. for about an hour before I rush home and get my kids ready for school. On the weekends I am a little more lax and fit my workout in sometime in the morning.

Andie: After

PS: How do you keep workouts exciting?

AT: As I previously mentioned| I love to mix things up! I recently started listening to podcasts during my workouts| so I am bettering my bod and my mind all at the same time. It has been a fun way to mix things up and keep my workout exciting.

PS: How much weight have you lost?

AT: I’ve lost 40 pounds.

PS: What was the first big difference| other than the number on the scale| that really made you feel proud and excited?

AT: Once the weight came off| I became so much more confident and more comfortable in my own skin. I found that exercise was the best part of my day and it really helped me to be a more centered and energetic person. I never thought that sweating and pushing myself so hard at the gym would become a part of who I was.

Andie: Before

PS: How do you track your weight loss?

AT: I typically weigh myself once a week| just to make sure that I stay in “my range.”

PS: What’s a typical day of meals and snacks?

AT: I usually will start eating around 11 or 12 and will eat a meal with lots of veggies and lean protein and will eat a snack or two as needed and then a well-balanced dinner and then I will close the kitchen around 7 p.m. and be done eating. I factor in some type of treat every day! I just make sure it fits into my calories and macros!

PS: What’s the range of calories you eat per day?AT: I like to stay around 1500 to 1600.

Andie: After

PS: What are the healthy staples that are always in your fridge? AT: I love snap peas and guacamole packs! They are so easy to grab and go and are super filling! I also LOVE Quest Bars! They are like eating a candy bar and are a savored treat!

PS: How do you strategize for meals out? AT: I always try to either split my meal or eat half and box the rest. Eating out is supposed to be fun! When you add too many restrictions| I think you are setting yourself up for failure. My biggest advice is just to watch portions! Enjoy your food and STOP when you are full.

PS: What advice do you have for anyone starting out on a weight-loss journey? AT: Have patience with yourself! When I first started I wanted to lose all this weight fast| so I was super restrictive and I demonized “bad foods” I would do OK for a bit| but inevitably I would cave! But instead of eating a healthy| normal-sized portion| I would binge ¡ª it was like I could not stop myself! So I shifted my mindset and became friends with food and instead of putting foods on lists of “naughty” or “nice|” I began to eat for my health and better energy and would enjoy a treat here and there for fun! This change in mindset made all the difference for me.

Image Source: Andie Thueson

20 Tips For Losing Weight

20 Tips For Losing Weight

Many of us struggle to lose weight. Lucky for us| our friends at Men’s Journal have given us some tips to help us get there.

When it comes to keeping your weight in check| there’s just no getting around the surefire formula of regular exercise plus a nutritious whole-foods diet. No shortcuts have ever proven to work better. That said| there are countless hacks| tricks| and tips that can speed up weight loss by helping you eat less| make better food choices| and get started down a healthier path.

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1. Wait out the urge to have seconds.

We’ve all polished off a delicious meal| immediately gone back for seconds| and then realized too late that we’re uncomfortably stuffed. That’s because it takes up to 20 minutes for your brain to register that you’re full| says nutritionist Wesley Delbridge of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. “”Before having another helping| wait 10 to 20 minutes and drink a glass of water|”” he says. “”If you’re still hungry after that| then have a smaller second serving.”” Chances are| though| you’ll realize you don’t actually want more.

2. Cut up your food.

Whether you’re eating a sirloin| salmon fillet| bagel| or omelet| try cutting your food into small pieces before taking a single bite. In a recent Arizona State University study| participants given a cut-up bagel ate less of it than those handed an intact bagel. They also consumed less food at a free lunch served 20 minutes later. The researchers say precutting food makes each bite more satisfying| thereby helping with portion control.

3. Brush or floss after meals.

Once you’ve finished lunch or dinner| bust out the toothbrush or dental floss| suggests nutritionist Heather Mangieri| owner of Nutrition CheckUp in Pittsburgh. When your teeth feel clean and your breath is minty| you’ll be less apt to nibble mindlessly as you’re straightening up the kitchen| or fall prey to dessert.

4. Plan ahead for business trips.

Traveling for business can make it super tough to eat healthy. To lessen your likelihood of ordering fattening entru00e9es on a whim| Delbridge advises figuring out which restaurants you’ll hit| researching their menus online| and making healthy choices ahead of time. He also suggests taking advantage of the coffee maker and packet of instant oatmeal in your hotel room. That quick| small breakfast or snack can at least tide you over until you can find something more substantial and nutritious.

Related: Great Cardio Workouts That Don’t Require Running

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5. Count your bites.

Nobody wants to dine with a tally sheet. However tracking the number of bites you take per day can help you trim excess calories from your diet. Brigham Young University researchers recently asked a group of students to count their daily bites and then reduce that number by 20 percent throughout the next month. Those who did so lost an average of four pounds. This isn’t rocket science u2014 slashing calories oftentimes leads to weight loss u2014 but it’s a way to get a sense of your eating habits so you can improve them.

6. Stick with wrapped candy.

If you’re going to cave to a candy craving (hey| it happens)| pick up some Starburst| Jolly Ranchers| or another kind that comes in a wrapper. You’ll probably eat less than if you’d chosen wrapper-less candy like Skittles or Twizzlers Nibs. A Swiss study found that people who were told to take freely from a bowl of wrapped candy ate just three pieces on average while those offered unwrapped sweets gobbled down five. The tiny effort required to unwrap something can be enough to slow you down and deter you from taking more.

7. Master chopsticks.

If you’ve never quite figured out how to wield chopsticks| now’s the time to learn. They require more dexterity and precision than a fork| forcing you to slow down. This is especially helpful for big noodle bowls and rice dishes| which are really easy to overeat| but chopsticks aren’t limited to Asian cuisine. Try using them for baked fish| sautu00e9ed veggies| or even a green salad.

8. Don’t indulge in mediocre restaurants.

Let’s say you land at a cheesy chain restaurant with new co-workers. Or maybe a client chooses a lunch spot that you know has blah food. In these situations| opt for the healthiest menu option available rather than ordering something that sounds delicious but probably won’t be. For instance| the smothered steak sandwich or a creamy pasta dish might look enticing| but you’ll likely be underwhelmed by the flavor u2014 and you’ll have consumed an insane amount of calories in the process. Instead| go for the plain grilled chicken breast or ask if they can turn the garden salad into a full-size portion. Save the decadent stuff for reputable restaurants and places you already frequent and know will not disappoint.

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9. Close your kitchen.

“”Setting boundaries around when you’re allowed to eat can help you stay focused on your goals|”” Mangieri says. “”For example| make a rule that your kitchen ‘closes’ at 7 p.m. so you’re not tempted to eat late at night.””

10. Sit at the end of the table.

At family-style dinner parties or when dining out with a group| grab a seat at the end of the table. Sure| the middle might be where the action is| but it’s also where the appetizers| bread bowl| and main entru00e9es are placed. Sitting at an end will make it tougher for you to mindlessly scoop seconds onto your plate.

11. Enjoy the smells.

Before cutting into a New York strip or twirling your fork in linguini| pause and take a few good whiffs. Stop between bites to sniff your food some more. Evidence suggests smelling your favorite foods sends the same signals of pleasure and fullness to your brain as tasting them| potentially helping you eat less.

12. Keep infused water in the fridge.

To help you kick a soda or juice habit| keep a clear pitcher of filtered water infused with cucumbers| lemons| strawberries| basil| or mint in your fridge at all times. It’ll look fresh and tasty| encouraging you to pour a glassful| and offer a subtle flavor that’s more exciting than plain water but not full of calories.

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13. Choose blue plates.

You’ve probably heard that the size of your plate can influence how much you eat. It turns out plate color matters too. According to research from Cornell University’s Food and Brand Lab| participants piled 22 percent less food on their plates when the plate color contrasted that of the entru00e9e vs. when the two hues matched. Obviously| the color of your food changes with each meal| and you’re not going to pull out different dishes every time. That said| what’s the one color that virtually no food matches? Blue. Research also shows blue is calming| which could help you eat slower. Just something to think about when you’re in the market for new dishes or buying disposable plates.

14. Ditch diet soda.

Here’s yet another reason to quit Diet Coke: Although diet soda drinkers consume fewer total calories per day than people who drink sugary sodas or booze| a greater percentage of their daily calories comes from nutrient-void junk food. It’s unclear whether that’s because diet soda fans think they can afford more calories so they make worse food choices or because artificially sweetened beverages trigger cravings for high-sugar| high-fat| and high-sodium foods. Either way| though| ditching diet soda may be secret trick to eating less garbage.

15. Make snacks count.

Some of the most accessible snack foods u2014 pretzels| crackers| chips u2014 scratch the itch| but only temporarily. Before you know it| you’ll be reaching for more food after these carbs. “”Make sure every snack is balanced| consisting of some carbohydrate| protein| fat| and fiber|”” Delbridge says. “”This is the best way to stay full and control the body’s insulin response and digestion.”” Our suggestion? Unsalted nuts.

16. Spice it up.

Make a point to use more chili peppers and other spices in your cooking u2014 in homemade soups| salad dressings| meat marinades| and even breakfast scrambles. Along with potentially lowering your risk of heart disease and cancer| spicy foods may help you lose weight. The secret weapon is capsaicin| the compound that gives peppers their spice. There’s some evidence that it activates the same brain receptors that tell you you’re full| leading you to eat less. Capsaicin also may prompt your body to turn jiggly white fat into energy-burning brown fat.

17. Don’t have sweets around.

“”Willpower rarely works when you can satisfy an unhealthy food craving just by walking over to the refrigerator or cupboard|”” Mangieri says. You can’t eat what isn’t there| so you’re better off not having tempting treats lying around. “”Make it so that if you really want a treat| you’ll have to get in your car and drive to get it|”” she adds. “”Oftentimes| that effort is enough to keep you from caving.””

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18. Start with soup.

Beginning a meal with a cup of low-calorie| broth-based soup can help you consume up to 20 percent fewer calories overall| according to Penn State research. The reason is simple: soup is mostly liquid| so it fills you up faster. But you have to go with low-cal kinds like spinach-and-tomato or French onion (without the gobs of cheese and croutons| of course). Creamy potato and white-bean chili will fill you up too| but they’ll tack tons of extra calories to the meal.

19. Know your order before sitting down at a restaurant.

You sit down at a restaurant intending to order a salad| wrap| or something else that’s small and semi-healthy. Then one guy at your table starts talking about buffalo wings. Another says he’s leaning toward the bacon cheeseburger and asks if anyone wants spinach-artichoke dip to start. Research has long shown that if fellow diners choose unhealthy foods| you’re much more likely to do the same. Once in a while is no big deal| but if you eat out a lot| you have to stick to your guns and not let others sway your order. Before even arriving at the restaurant| make a promise to yourself that you won’t change your decision last minute based on what others are getting.

20. Use smaller wineglasses.

Wine is one of the sneakiest sources of extra calories| and it’s so easy to drink more than you think u2014 especially when using jumbo glasses. Cornell Food and Brand Lab scientists found that people pour themselves 12 percent more wine when using wide-bottom glasses and another 12 percent more when they hold the glass when pouring vs. setting it on the table. To better control your portions| opt for smaller and thinner wineglasses and set the glass down before pouring.

More from Men’s Journal:

The Proven Way to Lose Your Gut

How to Lose the Last 10 Pounds

Easy Diet Changes You Can Make Tomorrow

7 Breakfast Foods That Help You Lose Weight

When it comes to losing weight, results start in the kitchen ¡ª and at your first meal of the day. Have these healthy breakfast staples on hand to set yourself up for weight-loss success.

    Cinnamon: Think of cinnamon as your breakfast’s secret weight-loss powerhouse. The spice adds sweetness to almost anything ¡ª without the calories, of course ¡ª so use it to sweeten your coffee or sprinkle on top of your oatmeal. It also may help regulate blood sugar so you stay energized all throughout the morning without needing to reach for another sweet treat.Eggs: A hard-boiled egg is the ultimate in healthy grab-and-go eats. At just 72 calories and six grams of protein per egg, choosing an egg over refined carbs like a plain bagel or a blueberry muffin will help keep you full and energized all morning long. For an extrafilling and delicious breakfast that takes just minutes to prepare, try this simple hard-boiled eggs and avocado recipe.Fruit: From topping your yogurt or oatmeal to throwing into a blender for smoothies, fruit can satisfy your sweet tooth in the morning without you having to resort to the pastry case at Starbucks. Plus, since most fruits are high in fiber, they’ll help you stay full as well. Green tea: When it comes to weight loss, green tea is hard to beat. Studies have shown that the beverage can increase your metabolism and lower stress levels. Studies have also shown that the stress hormone cortisol is linked to belly fat, so every bit helps when it comes to keeping calm. Greek yogurt: This high-protein breakfast mainstay is a favorite for a reason; using it as a base, you can use a variety of healthy Greek yogurt toppings while keeping your breakfast’s calories low. Just be sure to watch out for high sugar content, which can give your body an added sugar overload. Get a comparison of Greek yogurt calorie, sugar, and protein content here.Nut milks: Lower in calories and sugar than regular milk, nut milk is great to have on hand for pouring over granola, soaking overnight oats, or adding into smoothies. It’s easy to make your own almond milk by following this simple recipe.Oats: A bowl of oatmeal can aid in your weight-loss goals; since it’s a complex carb, it takes longer for your body to digest so you stay full for hours without an energy crash. Cooking time will vary depending on the type of oats you use (rolled oats take less time than steel cut) ¡ª just remember to steer clear of sugary, processed instant oatmeal packets. For the fastest way to a warming, hearty, and healthy breakfast, use this ingenious oatmeal freezer hack for perfectly proportioned meals.

Related: 52 Healthy Breakfast Recipes to Start Your Day Off Right

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Grace Hitchcock

7 Breakfast Foods That Help You Lose Weight

When it comes to losing weight| results start in the kitchen ¡ª and at your first meal of the day. Have these healthy breakfast staples on hand to set yourself up for weight-loss success.

    Cinnamon: Think of cinnamon as your breakfast’s secret weight-loss powerhouse. The spice adds sweetness to almost anything without the calories| of course so use it to sweeten your coffee or sprinkle on top of your oatmeal. It also may help regulate blood sugar so you stay energized all throughout the morning without needing to reach for another sweet treat.Eggs: A hard-boiled egg is the ultimate in healthy grab-and-go eats. At just 72 calories and six grams of protein per egg| choosing an egg over refined carbs like a plain bagel or a blueberry muffin will help keep you full and energized all morning long. For an extrafilling and delicious breakfast that takes just minutes to prepare| try this simple hard-boiled eggs and avocado recipe.Fruit: From topping your yogurt or oatmeal to throwing into a blender for smoothies| fruit can satisfy your sweet tooth in the morning without you having to resort to the pastry case at Starbucks. Plus| since most fruits are high in fiber| they’ll help you stay full as well. Green tea: When it comes to weight loss| green tea is hard to beat. Studies have shown that the beverage can increase your metabolism and lower stress levels. Studies have also shown that the stress hormone cortisol is linked to belly fat| so every bit helps when it comes to keeping calm. Greek yogurt: This high-protein breakfast mainstay is a favorite for a reason; using it as a base| you can use a variety of healthy Greek yogurt toppings while keeping your breakfast’s calories low. Just be sure to watch out for high sugar content| which can give your body an added sugar overload. Get a comparison of Greek yogurt calorie| sugar| and protein content here.Nut milks: Lower in calories and sugar than regular milk| nut milk is great to have on hand for pouring over granola| soaking overnight oats| or adding into smoothies. It’s easy to make your own almond milk by following this simple recipe.Oats: A bowl of oatmeal can aid in your weight-loss goals; since it’s a complex carb| it takes longer for your body to digest so you stay full for hours without an energy crash. Cooking time will vary depending on the type of oats you use (rolled oats take less time than steel cut) ¡ª just remember to steer clear of sugary| processed instant oatmeal packets. For the fastest way to a warming| hearty| and healthy breakfast| use this ingenious oatmeal freezer hack for perfectly proportioned meals.

Related: 52 Healthy Breakfast Recipes to Start Your Day Off Right

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Grace Hitchcock

5 Snacking Mistakes That Cause You to Gain Weight

After a jam-packed day of eating right, staying active, and other healthy choices, the last thing you want to do is undo all your hard work just minutes before bedtime. Make sure you stay on the right track by avoiding these late-night eating mistakes.

Mistake #1: Going to Sleep Too Full

Going to sleep on a full stomach can cause discomfort and disrupted sleep, which can wreak havoc on your waistline by causing you to hold on to belly fat and eat more. Make sure you eat dinner at least a few hours before bedtime; if you need a snack later on, keep it under 200 calories.

Mistake #2: Eating the Wrong Thing

It’s not just when you eat, but what. Eating the wrong foods late at night can also leave you wishing you could just drift off to slumber. Avoid greasy, high-fat, heavy-protein foods if you want to catch more weight-regulating Z’s; a small amount of lean protein and a little carb should be your go-to option. Find out other types of foods you should avoid late at night here.Mistake #3: Going to Bed Hungry

You may think that going to bed with a grumbling stomach will help your body burn off more fat while you sleep, but studies have shown this isn’t the case. In fact, going to bed hungry may actually cause you to lose muscle instead ¡ª which, in turn, slows down your fat-burning potential. Keep your metabolism soaring by having a small, 150-calorie snack before you climb into bed.

Mistake #4: Not Factoring In Your Snack

You’ve powered down for the day and put your food journal away, but don’t think that those late-night nibbles don’t add up. If you’re sticking to a weight-loss plan, make sure you keep track of any postdinner calories, so you’re not left wondering why the number on the scale doesn’t budge. If you know you like to have a snack before going to bed, making sure you’ve “saved” a few calories from the day can help you stick to your limits.

Mistake #5: Starving All Day, Feasting All Night

There’s nothing you like more than relaxing on the couch with a bowl of ice cream, so you pick at your dinner just so you can indulge before bedtime. This is a recipe for disaster; not only are you almost guaranteeing an uncomfortable night with a full stomach, saving your “cheats” for after dinner and beyond can lead to an unhealthy cycle of junk food and regret. Try to disassociate your late-night snack with unhealthy foods, and focus on eating regularly throughout the day and having a healthy snack after dinner only if you’re hungry.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / THEM TOO

5 Snacking Mistakes That Cause You to Gain Weight

After a jam-packed day of eating right| staying active| and other healthy choices| the last thing you want to do is undo all your hard work just minutes before bedtime. Make sure you stay on the right track by avoiding these late-night eating mistakes.

Mistake #1: Going to Sleep Too Full

Going to sleep on a full stomach can cause discomfort and disrupted sleep| which can wreak havoc on your waistline by causing you to hold on to belly fat and eat more. Make sure you eat dinner at least a few hours before bedtime; if you need a snack later on| keep it under 200 calories.

Mistake #2: Eating the Wrong Thing

It’s not just when you eat| but what. Eating the wrong foods late at night can also leave you wishing you could just drift off to slumber. Avoid greasy| high-fat| heavy-protein foods if you want to catch more weight-regulating Z’s; a small amount of lean protein and a little carb should be your go-to option. Find out other types of foods you should avoid late at night here.Mistake #3: Going to Bed Hungry

You may think that going to bed with a grumbling stomach will help your body burn off more fat while you sleep| but studies have shown this isn’t the case. In fact| going to bed hungry may actually cause you to lose muscle instead ¡ª which| in turn| slows down your fat-burning potential. Keep your metabolism soaring by having a small| 150-calorie snack before you climb into bed.

Mistake #4: Not Factoring In Your Snack

You’ve powered down for the day and put your food journal away| but don’t think that those late-night nibbles don’t add up. If you’re sticking to a weight-loss plan| make sure you keep track of any postdinner calories| so you’re not left wondering why the number on the scale doesn’t budge. If you know you like to have a snack before going to bed| making sure you’ve “saved” a few calories from the day can help you stick to your limits.

Mistake #5: Starving All Day| Feasting All Night

There’s nothing you like more than relaxing on the couch with a bowl of ice cream| so you pick at your dinner just so you can indulge before bedtime. This is a recipe for disaster; not only are you almost guaranteeing an uncomfortable night with a full stomach| saving your “cheats” for after dinner and beyond can lead to an unhealthy cycle of junk food and regret. Try to disassociate your late-night snack with unhealthy foods| and focus on eating regularly throughout the day and having a healthy snack after dinner only if you’re hungry.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / THEM TOO

15 Ways to Feel Slimmer by Tomorrow

15 Ways to Feel Slimmer by Tomorrow

Slimming down takes time and dedication| but a few quick tricks can help you feel a little bit lighter in just one day. Read on to get our tips for feeling less bloated and puffy u2014 and having a flatter belly u2014 by the end of today!

| Morning: Drink Hot Water and Lemon

A mug of hot lemon water in the morning wakes up your digestive system and helps get things moving. You can drink green tea with lemon if you don’t like the taste of warm lemon water on its own.

| Morning: Go Dairy Free

Many people feel belly discomfort after eating dairy. If that’s you| leave out the cream and yogurt from your morning breakfast. These dairy-free breakfast recipe ideas will help you nix the yogurt| cheese| and milk to see if you feel better.

| Morning: Detox With Yoga

Yoga twists help rid your body of toxins by aiding your digestion. This yoga detox sequence includes plenty of twists and stretches to help you wake up and feel your best.

| Midmorning: Have a Tropical Snack

Both pineapple and papaya contain enzymes u2014 bromelain and papain| respectively u2014 that help banish bloat by breaking down protein and easing digestion. Snack on a bowl of cut-up fruit| or make this papaya| pineapple| and coconut water smoothie for a midmorning snack.

| All Day: Slow Down

Eating too quickly can cause air to be trapped in your system| so chew slowly to minimize bloating caused from getting too much air trapped in your system.

| All Day: Don’t Chew Gum

It’s a secret of debloating brides u2014 stop the gum-chewing to feel less puffy. And it’s not only because chewing gum causes you to swallow more air; many gums contain sugar alcohol| which also can make you feel bloated.

| All Day: Drink More Water

Good old H2O helps flush out toxins and extra salt (which can be responsible for that puffy feeling) from your system| so remind yourself to drink more water throughout the day. Keeping a water bottle with you at all times is a great way to ensure you’re always filling up u2014 check out a few of our favorite water bottles.

| Afternoon: Eat Quinoa

Quinoa’s many nutrients include fiber and potassium| both of which are important if you’d like to feel less bloated. This superfood salad combines kale| quinoa| and blueberries for a delicious and filling lunch.

| All Day: Check Portions

The reason you’re feeling full and bloated could be your portion sizes. If you find that you’re constantly feeling stuffed after a meal| download and print our visual guide to portions that just uses your hands.

| Afternoon: Have a Fiber-Rich Snack

Many women don’t get enough fiber| which is the key to feeling full| energized| and bloat-free. You should aim to get 25 to 30 grams of fiber a day; reach that goal by snacking on fiber-rich foods like avocado| raspberries| chia seeds| and pears. Learn more about which foods are high in fiber (remember to skip ones like beans and cruciferous vegetables| which may cause stomach discomfort).

| Evening: Skip Happy Hour

Whether it’s a glass of wine with dinner or a cocktail at happy hour| that drink can make you feel bloated for many reasons. Not only can the alcohol cause digestion issues| but all that sugar in your fruity drink can make you feel sluggish as well. Not only that| those drinks can lead to deep-fried decisions when dinnertime rolls around. Keep temptations away by skipping out on happy hour or sticking to noncarbonated water with lemon.

| Dinner: Go For Asparagus

Asparagus encourages digestive health by stimulating the growth of good bacteria in your body. Eat a dinner that’s heavy on the veggies| and add a lean protein like chicken or fish for further debloating properties. Healthy asparagus recipes| like this asparagus detox salad| would go perfectly with your belly-slimming dinner.

| Evening: Skip the Dessert

Fatty| sugary foods can cause bloating| as can foods high in artificial sweeteners. Skip the carb-heavy| sugary desserts| and go for fresh fruit| which is high in fiber and water| to help you debloat.

| Evening: Drink a Debloating Tea

Spices like cinnamon and ginger help clear out your system| so have a mug of debloating tea u2014 like this ginger lemongrass tea u2014 before you go to bed. Mint tea can also help soothe your stomach| so opt for that if you need a refreshing end to your dinner.

| Night: Get to Sleep on Time

Sleep helps regulate your metabolism| so lack of sleep can make you feel sluggish in more ways than one. Keep your body working at its best by ensuring you get seven to nine hours of sleep at night.