Is weight loss about just eating less?

HealthIs weight loss about just eating less?

By Dr. Attia Anwar

Losing weight is what almost everyone desires to do. Obesity has become a pandemic in high-income countries. And low and middle-income countries are facing both problems of undernutrition and obesity.

   

Moreover, maintaining a healthy weight is important for self-esteem of the people, so people try to lose weight by many methods. Although losing weight is very important for general health and well-being, it is also important once you lose weight you are able to maintain it and there should not be much stress involved along the process.

So instead of yo- yo dieting or extreme fasting, there are other ways that involve healthier and maintainable ways of losing weight. Apart from eating or calorie count, there are other factors that are involved in losing weight. It has been scientifically proven that level of stress, amount of sleep, and general level of activity are very important for losing weight.

As far as food is concerned healthy foods are important to prevent diseases like heart disease and diabetes. Your plate should be colorful with lots of vegetables and fruits. A plant-based diet is healthy for you. You can add healthy meat like fish and chicken and low-fat dairy. Oils should be healthy like olive oil sunflower oil and canola oil. Nuts are healthy for weight loss and maintaining cholesterol. Following is a healthy plate proven by Howard University research.

So half of your plate should be filled with fruits and vegetables. Out of which two-thirds should be vegetables and one-third should be fruits. The other half would be whole grains and healthy proteins.

Below is a list of healthy nutrient-rich foods which will help you reduce your weight, keep you healthy, keep you energetic, and reduce inflammation.

  • Whole egg
  • Leafy green vegetables like spinach
  • Salmon
  • Cruciferous vegetables like cauliflower broccoli, and cabbage.
  • Chicken breast and some lean meat like tuna
  • Beans and legumes
  • Soups
  • Avocados
  • Nuts
  • Whole grains
  • Chilli pepper
  • Fruits especially berries and all fruits
  • Grapefruit
  • Chia seeds
  • Coffee and green tea

This is not the end of the list, if you do a little research about food you will find that nature has so much in stores that you can eat, have the joy of eating, and can lose weight. What you have to do is be a little deliberate and mindful about eating.

Other things apart from healthy eating that prevent weight loss and lead to the accumulation of fat are stress, less sleep, and a sedentary lifestyle. All three of these lead to the secretion of hormones which increase appetite food craving and less fat burning. Below are a few tips to maintain and achieve your weight loss.

  • Keep your portion control
  • Eat five divided small meals
  • Eat slowly.
  • Do not eat in front of the TV or while doing something.
  • Keep dedicated time for cooking
  • Sometimes take joy in cooking your favourite meal with healthy ingredient
  • Sleep at least seven to nine hours at night
  • Be more physically active
  • Reduce your stress level by doing some yoga, meditation, etc.
  • Keep a positive attitude.

So we can say that the weight loss journey is not all grim and gloomy. If you adopt a healthy outlook on life and keep your food choices healthy, it can bring you a ray of joy and transform your life forever.

Eating a variety of food and trying to eat fresh food avoiding anything that is processed or has preservatives is key to healthy eating. Then having some purpose in life and avoiding sedentary lifestyles have long-term health benefits. All things described in this article need a little motivation and then you are unstoppable.

Note: The author is a consultant family physician with a postgraduate degree from the Royal College of GP UK. She is a strong advocate of health and well-being and wants patient participation in decision-making regarding health.

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