HOW TO LOSE WEIGHT
This part will take some implementation and willpower from your part. There is no quick fix to weight loss!
One of the most important parts of weight loss is a healthy eating plan. Making sure you eat correctly goes a long way to losing weight and keeping it off.
Let’s look at food a little closer. Food is broken down into three main groups and all play a vital role in helping to maintain a healthy blood glucose level. These groups are protein, fat and carbohydrates.
Some very simple ideas to follow when it comes to these food groups are as follows:
- Choose whole grain carbohydrates. Do not use white carbohydrates at all, including white rice, white pasta or white bread. These are refined carbohydrates and they cause spikes in blood glucose levels which are very difficult to control.
- Eat plenty of vegetables and legumes. These are low in calories and can be eaten in abundance. They are also extremely filling.
- Eat fruit in moderation. Fruit is high in fructose, a form of sugar which can affect blood glucose levels. Never eat more than two fruits a day.
- Include unsaturated fats in your diet. These fats are found in fish, nuts and lean meat cuts.
- Avoid processed meats as they are high in saturated fats which increase LDL cholesterol levels.
- Protein can come from a variety of sources including plants and animals. Try to eat white meat including poultry and fish.
Most dieticians will recommend that a diabetic follow a balanced eating plan that will consist of 50% carbohydrates, 30% fat and 20% protein.
Other important changes that you can make to your lifestyle include the following:
- Eat breakfastThis helps to set you on the right track for the rest of the day. Breakfast is truly the most important meal of the day for a diabetic. It helps to ensure that you have a base to start from in the quest to keep your blood glucose levels as normal as possible.
- Don’t skip mealsAlthough it may seem that eating less will help in your weight loss, this is a myth. Skipping a meal will cause a massive slow down in your metabolism as your body holds onto any energy source it can find for fuel. As you do not have any incoming energy in the form of food, your body actually holds on to fat to use as an energy Source.
- Watch your calories1200 – 1800 calories per day for women
- Your exact amount should be discussed with your doctor/dietician as it can vary based on age, weight, level of activity and body shape.
- 1400 – 2000 calories per day for men
- Eat five small evenly spaced meals. This helps to control hunger.
- Eat at least three servings of fibre per dayNot only does fibre lower blood glucose levels, it actually speeds up weight loss and keeps body functions regular.
- Avoid sugarThis seems obvious, but sugar is found were you least expect it. Remember to limit yourself to two fruits a day as they contain fructose, a form of sugar.
- Increase Omega 3 intakeOmega 3 fats are very important in your weight loss fight. They help blood flow to muscles during exercise as well as encourage proteins that move fat to areas in your body where it is burned as energy.
- Increase Vitamin D intakeVitamin D deficiency is extremely common especially in colder countries where sunshine is not a daily occurrence. Vitamin D3 helps your body burn fat.
One of the most important ways to lose weight is through exercise. Even if you are very overweight, a little exercise a day can make a huge difference. The more weight you lose, the easier the exercise will become.
Exercise also helps your muscles use the glucose in your body much more efficiently, helping to regulate your blood glucose levels.
Exercise has other benefits including:
- Burns fat.
- Builds muscle and strengthens bones.
- Helps with joint flexibility.
- Lowers blood pressure.
- Lowers harmful LDL cholesterol and raises beneficial HDL cholesterol levels.
- Leads to better blood circulation.
- Heart disease risks reduced.
- Increased fitness levels.
- Reduction in stress levels.
- Improved sleep.
- Can reduce depression.
Remember to discuss any exercise programme with your doctor first. Start off slowly, no more than 5 – 10 minutes a day, depending on your current weight. Remember, you can always increase the duration of your exercises as your fitness levels increase. It is important to choose a form of exercise that you will enjoy and look forward to doing. Also, remember to drink plenty of fluids while you exercise.
If you combine healthy eating with some form of exercise, you will lose weight! Good Luck!