Most of us are pretty good when it comes to the “big things”: our diet, our workout program, a good night’s sleep, etc. But it’s the “little things” that tend to trip us up. Maybe it’s that little snack you knew you shouldn’t have had but did anyways, or the time you cut your workout short to hit the bar with your buddies. The small stuff can add up over the course of a week, a month, or a year, and it can stop you from losing weight. Here are a few small lifestyle changes to make for faster fat burning:
Cut the Condiments
Yes, condiments do many any sandwich, salad, or soup easier to eat, but are they really a healthy choice? Salad dressings tend to be high in oil, calories, and artificial flavorings, while ketchup, BBQ sauce, mayonnaise, and other condiments each have their own unhealthy ingredients. If you want to reduce unnecessary calories, it’s time to cut the condiments from your life. Stick with mustard, vinegar and olive oil dressing, and hot sauces, but get rid of everything else. It will pay off in the long run!
Turn Off Your Phone
It may sound silly, but it’s true: being attached to your phone is stressful, and more stress means a higher risk of stress eating. It’s even worse if you stay up at night on your phone! It will stop you from falling asleep, reducing the number of hours you sleep every night. A lack of sleep is one of the primary causes of slow metabolism, insulin resistance, and weight gain. If you want to make your diet as effective as possible, turn off your phone–especially in the evening. An unplugged life can be a surprisingly healthy and enjoyable one.
Ditch the Low-Calorie and “Diet” Foods
Let’s be clear: foods that are low in calories (fruits, veggies, tea, water, etc.) are excellent for your health, and should be your primary source of nutrition while on your diet. No, we’re talking about anything that is a “low calorie” or “diet” version of a normally high-fat or high-calorie food. Just because something is “low calorie”, that doesn’t make it healthy. It usually means that it’s a highly processed, artificial version of an already less-than-healthy food. Cutting calories too much can also affect your hunger hormones, leading to an increased appetite and higher food intake. Stick with healthy, natural foods, and avoid anything with the label “low-calorie” or “diet”.
Make Your Coffee Natural
Say “no” to any unhealthy additions to your coffee: Splenda, aspartame, flavored coffee creamer, half and half, powdered creamer, and the list goes on. Coffee can be such a healthy drink, so why ruin it with all these unhealthy, highly processed ingredients. Stick with milk and a bit of sugar (if you must), and you’ll find that it’s one of the healthiest parts of your day!
Start the Day Right
Don’t make the mistake of skimping on your breakfast, but go for a full-on meal first thing in the morning! Serve yourself a large plate of eggs, onions, tomatoes, and spinach, with a couple of slices of whole wheat toast and a glass of milk or OJ on the side. A hearty breakfast will give you energy for your morning, and will help you to start the day making “healthy choices”. This will make it easier to keep up those healthy choices for the rest of the day. Make sure to get lots of fiber for breakfast (from veggies especially), and it will keep your metabolism firing at full speed! Protein is another vital ingredient for your breakfast.