Be safe; be successful with natural weight loss. This type of weight loss says NO to starving, diet pills, crash diets, and expensive plans. Why?
Because some aren’t safe, most don’t work, and they often end up causing weight gain!
The Journal of the American Dietetic Association recently published research supporting a new weight loss paradigm called Health-At-Every-Size (HAES).
This paradigm shifts the focus from the traditional “weight-centered” approach to a more “health-centered” approach. The research suggests this shift works and could have long-term beneficial effects.
This type of weight loss says YES to losing weight the natural way while supporting a healthy YOU.
Natural Weght Loss Tips
1. Money Can’t BUY a Healthy Weight
If money could buy a healthy weight, we would be the healthiest-most-well-proportioned nation on the planet instead of one of the sickest and most obese of the industrialized nations.
Americans spend $35 billion dollars a year on weight loss products. James A. Duke, MD says, “That’s a lot of money to waste on pills and gimmicks that don’t work.”
Statistics show that American’s are gaining weight not losing it — over the last 40 years the obesity and overweight rate in the US has more than doubled.
David G. Williams, MD calls it “Syndrome A” — the American Syndrome. Syndrome A’s symptoms include excess fat, high blood pressure, joint pain, brittle bones, tumors, stroke, heart attack, and mental decline in old age. Syndrome A causes:
- eating too much junk food and other highly processed foods;
- too little exercise and too much TV;
- lack of sleep;
- too much alcohol and nicotine;
- too much reliance on pharmaceuticals, and
- failure to take sensible supplements that could prevent many chronic illnesses.
2. Watch Out for “Quick Fix” Promises of Weight-Loss Supplements
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently identified 72 weight loss products that contain illegal and possibly dangerous additives of active prescription drugs. These drugs include:
- potent diuretics (water loss pills)
- amphetamine-like drugs
- an anti-convulsant
- an anti-obesity drug rejected by the FDA because it caused suicidal thoughts
- a laxative suspected of causing cancer
Health risks of these products include high blood pressure, seizures, rapid heartbeats, palpitations, heart attack, and stroke.
Some of these tainted products claimed to be “natural” or to contain only “herbal” ingredients. In some instances, the drug amounts even exceeded maximum recommended prescription doses.
3. Healthy Food Choices Equals Natural Weight Loss Choices
Enjoy the many health benefits of the Mediterranean diet while you enjoy natural weight loss!
A 2009 study of nearly 500,000 Europeans found that those who adhered to the Mediterranean diet (high in fiber and plant foods and low in saturated fat) were the least likely to have abdominal obesity.
Another ingredient in the Mediterranean style of dining, red wine, is rich in resveratrol. Research now finds that resveratrol may help natural weight loss in addition to its anti-aging agent fame. A study presented at The Endocrine Society’s 90th Annual Meeting found evidence that resveratrol reduces the number of fat cells and may eventually be used to prevent and treat obesity.
4. Eat High Fiber Foods
Fiber foods, typically plant foods low in calories and fat, require more time and effort to eat than processed and fast foods do. They provide more bulk so you feel full and eat less.
Studies show that people who eat more fiber have lower rates of obesity. One study found that people who added 14 grams of fiber to their diets ate 10 percent fewer calories and lost 4 pounds over 4 months. Women should get 21 to 25 grams of fiber daily and men should get 30 to 38 grams, say Duke.
Good fiber based foods include beans, fruits, whole grains and nuts. You can check out the fiber content of foods along with other nutrients at the USDA Nutrient Data Laboratory.
5. Drink Green Tea
One of the most promising natural weight loss supplements is green tea. It contains catechins, caffeine, myricetin, and quercetin that speed up metabolism and increase fat burning (thermogenesis). Plus, you get green tea’s immune and cardiovascular benefits.
In a recent study published in Alternative Medicine Review 50 overweight people were divided into 2 groups. One group took a placebo capsule (fake substance) and the other took a capsule containing green tea extract supplement. All adhered to the same reduced calorie diet. Those taking the green tea extract supplement lost an average of 34 to 26 pounds compared to a 10-pound loss in the placebo group.
Another study found that men who drank a cup and a half of oolong tea daily for 12 weeks reduced their waist circumference and amount of body fat.
6. Eat Calcium Rich Foods
Duke reported that an analysis of data from a national nutritional survey found that people with high calcium intake had an 85 percent lower risk of being overweight.
Another research study found that each 300-milligram increase of daily calcium intake by adults was associated with a 5 to 6 pound weight decrease. Duke notes. “Higher calcium intake may encourage your fat-storing cells to put away less fat and break down more of it.”
It’s best to get your calcium from food for natural weight loss. Calcium rich foods include low-fat dairy products, calcium fortified orange juice, as well as salmon and sardines with their bones. Plant sources include navy beans, soybeans, and turnip greens.
7. Make Time for Exercise
The American College of Sports Medicine reports that a minimum of 4 hours of moderate to intense exercise a week is necessary to lose weight.
Try 30 to 45 minutes of moderate to brisk walking on most days. Use part of your lunchtime or after work. Pick a time and make it a habit. It’s guaranteed you’ll feel and look better!
Try yoga or some other form of exercise if walking is not for you.
Generally, when you exercise not only do you burn more calories you end up eating less too. All contributing to natural weight loss.
8. Snacks Are Good For You
Contrary to what you may have been told, not eating when you’re hungry leads to weight gain!
The body needs food every 3 to 4 hours. If it doesn’t get the food it needs it starts raiding protein stores. It actually slows down your ability to burn fat.
Healthy low glycemic snacks help you get the nutrition you need and reduces the craving to eat big meals. They’re important for natural weight loss.
Make your breakfast a satisfying meal with a lighter lunch and dinner with snacks in between. Eating a satisfying breakfast helps stave off hunger throughout the day. Research shows that eating a big dinner close to bedtime is a sure way to put on the pounds.
Include protein with your meals and snacks. Protein is more filling and makes foods more satisfying. Eat an egg with wholegrain toast for breakfast and have cheese for a snack.
9. Practice Mindful Eating
In our fast-paced culture, we often rush through meals. This fast pace leads to overeating, indigestion, and loss of connection with ourselves.
Mindful eating offers a wonderful way to honor food as nourishment for body and soul.
Be present for your food. Chew each bite slowly. Notice its texture, flavor, and aroma. Appreciate how chewing breaks down food releasing its flavor. Appreciate how savoring your food helps prepare it for easy digestion. Eating slowly helps you enjoy food and to notice when you are starting to get full.
It takes abut 20 minutes for your stomach to signal the brain that it’s full. Notice the early signs that you’ve had enough. Then, push away from the table.
Besides a new study accepted for publication in The Endocrine Society’s Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism found that eating a meal quickly, as compared to slowly, curtails the release of hormones in the gut that induce feelings of being full. The decreased release of these hormones, can lead to overeating.
10. Psychological and Social Support May Help
You may want to enlist the help of family or friends in your natural weight loss plan. If so, let them know how they can help. Some folks do better in a group setting. Check with your local hospital or consider one of the commercial weight loss programs. Some offer online options.
Nutritionists recommend keeping a diary of what you eat for a week. Then, review it looking for patterns you want to change. You may notice a pattern of over eating related to stress or some other trigger.
Often when you change one thing, you realize it’s connected to other aspects of yourself. That’s not surprising since you’re a whole person: body, mind and spirit. If it’s a significant concern consider the appropriate professional help.
Most of all be safe, use natural weight loss, support a healthy YOU. Be successful!
Sources and Resources
D. Romaguerra et. al., “Adherence to the Mediterranean Diet is Associated with Lower Abdominal Adiposity in European Men and Women,” Journal of Nutrition, 139, no. 9, 2009.
F. Di Pierro et. al., “GreenSelect Phytosome as an Adjunct to Low-Calorie Diet for Treatment of Obesity: a Clinical Trial,” Alternative Medicine Review, 14, no. 2, 2009.
James A. Duke, The Green Pharmacy Guide to Healing Foods: Proven Natural Remedies to Treat and Prevent More Than 80 Common Health Concerns, (Rodalestore.com: Rodale, 2008).
Public Citizen’s Health Research Group, “Worst Pills, Best Pills: 72 Weight-Loss Supplements Illegally Spiked with Prescription Drugs.” Retrieved September 10, 2009 from http://www.worstpills.org.
The Endocrine Society (2009, November 4),“Eating Quickly Is Associated With Overeating, Study Indicates.” ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 5, 2009 from http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091104085230.htm.
The Endocrine Society (2008 June 17), “Red Wine’s Resveratrol May Help Battle Obesity.” ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 5, 2009 from www.scincedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080616115850.htm.
Véronique Provencher et. al., “’Health-At-Every-Size’ and Eating Behaviors: One-Year Follow-Up Results of a Size Acceptance Intervention,” Journal of the American Dietetic Association, 109, no. 11, 2009.