If you are one of the many who have let your diet and exercise habits slip a little over Winter, the smell of Spring may be a firm reminder of the need to shift a few kg quickly before bikini season well and truly arrives. Before you rush out and spend your hard earned dollars on yet another rapid weight loss program, keep in mind that there is more than enough time to lose a few kg simply by adopting a few key diet tricks over the next few weeks. While weight loss may not be as rapid using more traditional techniques, the good news is that the weight you do lose will be gone for good.
1) Make breakfast your largest meal of the day
Remember, the bigger your breakfast, and the earlier you eat it, the better it is for your metabolism. Aim to include a protein rich breakfast into your day before 8am and you should be kept full for at least 2-3 hours before you will need a mid-morning snack. Good choices include eggs or baked beans, a protein shake or some thick Greek yoghurt with berries.
2) Avoid eating in between meals and snacks
A biscuit here, a coffee there and before you know it you have consumed an extra 150-250 calories each day, which is the difference between losing weight and not. Common culprits include lollies, tea, coffee, biscuits, cake and fruit. Plan your meals and snacks each day and consume only vegetables or herbal tea in between these times to allow optimal digestion and appetite management.
3) Go alcohol free
Alcohol contains almost as many calories as fat and a regular drink quickly becomes a habit and before you know it you are looking for 2-3 glasses or beers a night. An alcohol free period of just 1-2 weeks is often all you need to kick start your weight loss and reminds you that you do not necessarily need a drink every single day.
4) Halve the size of your dinner
As many of us are eating our last meal of the day much, much later than we did 20 years ago, and as it remains often the largest meal of the day, it is not surprising many of us are gaining weight. If you are eating regular meals and snacks, aim to keep your dinner lighter in calories simply by sticking to a small piece of lean meat or fish and team it will lots of fresh salad and vegetables. A light, small meal at night will ensure you wake hungry for a big breakfast, and will support you in achieving a calorie deficit and weight loss as a result.
5) Replace one meal with a soup or salad
The low calorie content of vegetable based soups and salads, means that you could literally eat as much of these foods as you like without weight gain. Put simply, when we eat lots of low calorie, nutrient rich foods such as vegetables, there is less room for other high calorie foods! One of the easiest dietary strategies you can adopt when trying to shift a few kg quickly and safely is to replace a meal with a soup or salad. Whether you choose a rich vegetable soup for dinner or a leafy green or roasted vegetable salad for lunch, your total calorie intake will be significantly reduced when you bump up the vegetable content of your diet.