Are you ready to start your weight loss journey but are overwhelmed with the world of macro counting and figuring out your nutrient percentages? Whether it’s not having the actual time to record and measure out every single thing that you are consuming in your day, or you just genuinely aren’t interested in tracking your macros, there are some small changes you can make in your daily routine that can help to create a long-lasting and sustainable weight loss plan for you! Follow our three simple tips on maintaining weight loss without having to constantly track.
If you’re on a weight loss journey, staying hydrated is a must! Drinking water helps to boost your metabolism, aid in the detoxification process, and acts as a natural appetite suppressant. It also stops you from retaining water, allowing your body to release those few extra pounds of water weight.
We understand that it’s easier said than done recommending to drink a bunch of water throughout your day, but actually implementing this into your life can take some effort, especially if you aren’t used to drinking water often.
How to Properly Stay Hydrated
- Drink half your body weight in ounces of water per day
- Add some natural electrolytes to your water (a pinch of sea salt, frozen berries, lemon, lime, cucumber)
- Drink 8 ounces of water 30 minutes before each meal to suppress your hunger
- Drink your water ice cold to boost your metabolism and burn more calories
Learning Portion Control (without measuring)
If you aren’t in a place where measuring out everything you are consuming is applicable, then learning how to portion control within a ballpark range is ideal in helping you within your weight loss journey. You use your hands for almost everything in life, so why not rely on them for one more task? When preparing your meals, let the this information guide you into food prepping:
- Fist Full of Carbs - focus on high-fiber whole foods like brown rice, oats, quinoa, etc.
- Thumb of Fat - shoot for healthy fats such as avocados, coconut, and olive oil
- Palm of Protein - lean proteins like poultry, tofu, white fish, etc. should be your focal point when trying to lose weight
- Two Handfuls of Veggies - fill your plate with a rainbow of vegetables
Nutrient Dense Whole Foods Versus Calorie Dense Foods
Not being in the game of calorie counting doesn’t mean you aren’t capable of losing weight. In fact, calorie counting does not always mean you will see the results you are hoping to achieve. Why is this? Because some people will eat whatever they want as long as it fits within their macros for that day. Eating a 500 calorie meal from McDonald’s looks a lot different than eating a 500 calorie meal of nutrient-dense, whole foods that you prepare at home. Your body takes this fuel and utilizes it so differently.
So ask yourself, what types of calories are you consuming? If it’s primarily healthy, whole foods, you’re on the right track!
What is a whole food diet?
If you are unsure whether or not you are eating primarily whole foods, think about where most of your grocery shopping takes place. Are you focusing on gathering a wide variety of foods from the outer rim of the grocery store (proteins, vegetables, fruits) or do you find yourself focused more on the inner aisles where a lot of the processed foods likes to hang out? Make sure to center your meals around foods that are in their most natural state; proteins, grains/legumes, raw nuts/seeds, and produce. If your plate looks like a rainbow with a sprinkle of protein on it, you are doing it right.
How To Build Your Plate
- Focus on slow-carbs: Keeping your blood sugar balanced is essential when looking to stay satiated and not overeat. Getting rid of carbohydrates that burn through your system quickly (refined sugar, bread, white potatoes, pasta, etc.) makes room for more slow-carbs (beans/legumes, healthy fats, vegetables, whole fruits) that provide your body with longer-lasting energy.
- Enjoy your dairy? Swap out low fat for whole fat: Most companies will add in sugars to their low fat alternative dairy products in order to make the flavor more enticing for consumers. With full fat dairy, no sugars need to be added, and the higher calorie density and fat content allows us to eat less and feel more satisfied.
- High-quality protein at every meal: When we want to control our hunger, we need to focus on controlling our blood sugar levels. Protein plays a huge role in helping us to control our weight by triggering the release of glucagon, which counterbalances insulin, helping to balance the effects of our consumed carbohydrates.
- Eat your fiber: Whole food fiber in the form of fresh fruits, vegetables, grains and legumes extends our stomach which triggers one of our hunger hormones, ghrelin, to turn off. This hormone is responsible for telling us when we are hungry. So if we are shutting down the production of this hormone, we are inevitably telling our body we are satiated and no longer need to keep eating.
Whether you are just starting out on your weight loss journey and aren’t quite ready to focus on counting your calories, or you are well versed in your nutrition tracking and want to loosen up your reins a little bit, learning how to sustain weight loss on your own is great knowledge to have. By adding tools like these to your health toolbox you are not only setting yourself for weight loss success, but also creating a sustainable healthy lifestyle for yourself!