Are you looking to get into better shape? Maybe you would like to shed a few pounds, or you’re just looking to be more mindful of what you’re putting into your body. Exercise is the best way to shed calories, but there are other ways to help limit caloric intake as well. Here are 10 ways to help cut extra unwanted calories out of your diet.
1. Drink More Water
Drinking water before eating is proven to aid in digestion. Not only that, but drinking water before eating will help you feel fuller, preventing you from adding on calories through overeating. It may seem counterproductive, but drinking water actually helps you lose water weight. By maintaining optimal hydration levels for your body, your body will stop trying to retain water, and you can start to shed that water weight.
2. Take The Stairs/Bike To Work
It may be a gradual process, but you can shed unwanted calories by taking the stairs, walking instead of taking the bus, or just changing one of your modes of transportation, daily. Stop waiting around for the elevator to hit your floor, and get moving! Don’t wait for the bus when you can bike your way there!
Even if you feel like it’s not making a big difference in calories burned, you are making more of an effort than you would be just sitting and waiting. If you feel discouraged, try using a pedometer to keep track of your steps. Everyone feels a little better when they can actually have a visualization of their progress.
3. Fill Half Your Plate With Fruits and Vegetables
Almost any dietitian will tell you that you need to be filling half of your plate with fruits and vegetables, and there’s a good reason why! Fruits and vegetables are generally lower in calories than carbohydrates and proteins, they’re packed full of nutrients your body needs to function, and they’re just downright delicious.
By filling up on fruit and vegetables, you’re less likely to consume calorie laden food. If you’re not big on fruits and vegetables on their own, try making a salad, or pairing them with healthy dips like yogurt or hummus dip.
4. Start Walking
Walking is a great way to burn calories, and enhance your overall health. Not only does walking improve cardiovascular and pulmonary functions, but it is a wonderful way to lower blood pressure. Walking for one hour every day can help burn off enough calories to lead to a significant amount of weight loss in just two months alone.
If you are afraid to walk by yourself, or you don’t have a lot of places to walk where you live, consider trying a treadmill. Especially if you have problems with your joints, walking on treadmills cab have a lower impact on your joints compared to walking on the ground.
5. Limit Alcohol
On average, one alcoholic drink has between 100 and 150 calories. Just one drink! The calories can add up quickly on a night out with friends, and before you know it, you can consume a good portion of your daily calories in alcohol alone. By limiting your alcohol intake, you can cut back on a serious amount of calories in your diet. If you do want to have a drink, there are some options that are significantly lower in calories. Just remember–it’s always smart to drink in moderation!
6. Fill Up On Fiber
Not all carbohydrates are bad, and it’s super important to remember that. In fact, lots of carbohydrate laden foods contain fiber, which is extremely important when it comes to reducing the amount of calories you consume. Soluble fiber is proven to help control hormones responsible for making you hungry. By consuming fiber, you can fee fuller longer, and cut back on calories. Try eating foods like oatmeal, lentils, broccoli, apples, avocados, chickpeas, quinoa, and pears.
7. Snack (In Moderation)
It’s important to eat if you feel hungry, and sometimes you get hungry before it’s time for your next meal of the day. Sometimes, if you wait too long, you can find yourself overeating at your next meal because you felt so hungry.
By eating small, healthy snacks composed of healthy proteins and fibers, you can consume fewer calories by listening to your body’s signals. Eating isn’t bad, and restricting your eating can make things even worse. As long as you eat healthy, portion controlled snacks and meals, you can stop taking in unwanted calories. Try vegetables with yogurt dip, hard boiled eggs, sliced fruit and cottage cheese, or a handful of your favorite nuts.
8. Smaller Plates
Many studies have shown that due to the increase in size of dinnerware over time, many individuals have started to consume larger quantities of food. This increase in food intake also means an increase in calories. By reducing the size of your dinnerware, you may also reduce your intake of calories as well. Smaller plates and bowls can lead to smaller portions, and that could possibly mean a smaller waist line as well. If you’re looking for an exact portion size, many retailers sell pre-portioned plates, so you can simply fill the empty portions on your plate and know exactly how much to eat.
9. Find Alternatives To Your Vices
Some things can be hard to give up when you’re trying to cut calories out of your diet. Sodas, candy, caffeine, can all be tempting to consume. However, sometimes it just takes a simple alternative to change your habits.
If you feel like you can’t get enough of soda, try a fizzy alternative like La Croix to get your fruity, effervescent fix. If you like candy, dried fruits are sweet and chewy, and an much healthier alternative when consumed in moderation. That sugary, monstrous frap you love to get for your caffeine fix every morning? Try ordering a flavored coffee instead, with nonfat milk and add sugar to taste.
10. Stop Eating In Front Of Your TV/Laptop
We are all guilty of overindulging in food. Why do you think they try to sell you so much food at the movie theater? If you’re distracted while eating, you are more likely to consume more food than you would be if you were paying attention to your meal. You could add hundreds of calories to your diet just by sitting in front of the television or your laptop while eating. By taking these distractions out of the equation, and focusing on mindful eating, you can consume significantly less calories.