Find it hard to keep to a diet? Hate calorie counting? Follow these easy tips and you'll shed the kilos without (too much) hardship:
1. Think Drink
If you're feeling peckish, reach for a glass of water first. When you're thirsty, your body can send out hunger signals, a drink of water might just dispel your hunger pangs.
2. Be an Early Bird
Important tip: exercising in the morning will boost your metabolism for the rest of the day.
3. Reduce Cravings
To cut cravings, rub the area between your nose and your top lip with your first finger for about a minute.
4. Avoid Sugar Slumps
Eating protein or unrefined carbohydrates prevents your blood sugar levels spiking, then plummeting. You'll feel full for longer, eat less and lose weight naturally.
5. Ban Nothing
If you say to yourself, 'I'm not having chocolate!', your brain hears, 'chocolate, chocolate', and you end up eating more. Allow yourself a few squares and you'll be fine.
6. Eat When Hungry
Ignoring hunger until you are starving causes your body to slow down, as it thinks there is a famine and it must save energy. Then when you do eat, your body stores reserves and makes you eat extra, just in case there is another famine.
7. Ignore Granny
Never mind what your grannny used to say—when you're no longer hungry, stop eating.
8. Ditch the Chardonnay
When you drink alcohol, your body relies on it for energy, instead of burning fat.
9. Read Labels
If you're buying packaged food, check the portion size to make sure you're not getting more than you bargained for.
10. Fork it
American researchers found that using bigger forks encouraged people to eat less, whereas using smaller forks meant they made a greater effort to satisfy their hunger and therefore ate more.
11. Eat Mindfully
Notice your food and chew slowly. Eat mindfully at the table rather than mindlessly in front of the TV and you'll feel more satisfied.
12. Learn to stop
Slim people stop eating when they're no longer hungry; overweight people eat until full!
13. Sleep Satisfied
Late-night carbs may be bad, but going to bed hungry isn't great either. Skip the carbs and have a high- protein snack instead, such as a handful of nuts, and you won't wake up hungry at 3 am.
14. Do Sweat
Exercising can double your metabolic rate. Get sweaty, for a minimum of half an hour, ideally three times a week.
15. Forgo Bad Fat
Apparently, we have an evolutionary drive to recognise bad fats and, when we have access to them, to eat as much as we can. Just say no.
16. Go Green
Green tea can help the body burn up to 40 percent more calories per day.
17. Get Fibre
Eat foods like lentils, peas and bread. Since it takes longer for you to chew and digest them, they will make you feel full longer.
18. Have a Hug
When you hug a friend you feel better. And then, you're more likely to eat better. Go on, have a cuddle.
Standing up, place one hand on your stomach, breathe deeply and slowly through your nose. Repeat this deep-breathing exercise for five breaths to help boost your metabolism.
20. Set a Routine
Eat at the same times everyday. If your body knows when to expect the next meal, you're less likely to graze.
21. Beat Temptation
If you're tempted to have a treat, touch the bit of cartilage in your ear that sticks out in front of the ear canal. Rub this in between your thumb and first finger for a few minutes to redirect your energy.
22. Relax a little
Take a bubble bath or get a pedicure. When you take care of your body, you're more likely to take care of what you put in it.
23. New Food Rules
Always need to have a biscuit with your cup of tea? Jot down your current food rules and then make new, healthier ones.
24. Stick at it
Follow a healthy diet for three months and it'll become a way of life.
25. Keep on Moving
Exercise releases endorphins, which means you feel calmer and happier, and you'll eat more healthily.
26. Excuse Slip Ups
Don't beat yourself up just because you had a muffin for breakfast. Shrug it off and nudge yourself back on to your correct path.
27. Start Cleaning
Doing housework can help tone your body.
28. Enjoy Those ZZZs
A tired body demands fuel for energy, which can lead to overeating. So get plenty of sleep.
29. Walk More
Just half an hour extra of brisk walking a day can burn up to 320 calories.
30. Go Blue
Blue has been found to function as an appetite suppressant so it reduces hunger.
31. Get Outside
Central heating and ACs can leave us feeling drained—which can lead to poor eating habits. Getting out in the fresh air for at least 10 minutes a day will boost energy.
32. Think Visually
Opt for smaller plates. A normal portion on a big plate can look small, but serving up the same portion on a smaller plate gives the visual signal that you have enough food.
33. Ignore the Lift
Climbing the stairs for just two minutes, five days a week, is an easy habit to adopt and can be as good for you as a 30-minute walk.
34. Bring Your Own
Instead of buying a sandwich, make your own healthy lunch. You'll know exactly what you're filling up on each day.
35. Go Natural
Quality is more important than quantity when it comes to losing weight, a study has found. Ditch white bread and over-refined foods in favour of fruit and veg, whole grains, and nuts.
36. Write it Down
Keep a diet journal and motivate yourself with statements about how you want to look—not how you don't. Writing 'I looked great in my blue dress last year and I want to be that slim again' is a powerful reminder of why you want to lose weight, and better than, 'I'm a big fat lump and I hate the way I look'.
37. Find an Ally
Telling your friends about your weight-loss or exercise plan can help to spur you on.
38. Buy a 'Target'
Purchase a pair of jeans or a dress that you want to be able to fit into. Don't put too much pressure on yourself, but set a realistic target to aim for.
39. Pick Veggies
If you make your portion of pasta, rice or bread smaller and your portion of vegetables bigger, you'll reduce the amount of starch on your plate and can save up to 200 calories a meal.
40. Keep Calm
When you're stressed,your body slows down to save on food anticipating famine. Reducing stress will help to keep your metabolism working at its optimum level.
41. Pace Yourself
Set yourself sensible goals each week. Nobody ever achieved long- term results in the first week; you're more likely to fail if you don't keep up the pace.
42. Ditch the Junk
Junk food is not only high in fat, it also destroys the brain cells that control weight.
43. Snack Smart
Most mindless eating occurs after dinner, when you're relaxing—like vegging out in front of the TV. So pick your evening snacks carefully and stick to low-fat, low-sugar cereal or a low- calorie energy bar.
44. Phone a friend
If you have a food craving you want to ignore, ring a friend and distract yourself with a chat. Research shows cravings last only about five minutes.
45. Be Prepared
You're more likely to resist ordering in if your kitchen is well- stocked with snacks. Try low-fat microwave popcorn, or wholemeal pitas and wraps.
46. Choose Skinny
Start ordering skinny lattes and low-fat muffins. And buy skimmed milk instead of semi-skimmed.
47. Have Your Five a Day
Instead of focusing on what you can't eat, focus on the good things that should be in your diet—including, ideally, five to nine servings of fruit and veggies a day.
48. Keep Busy
Often overeating is caused by boredom and negative moods. Having lots of social stimulation will keep your mind busy.
49. Eat Negative
Certain foods use up more calories to digest than they contain and eating lots of them can help you lose weight. So go for broccoli, celery, brussels sprouts, carrots, and apples.
50. Visualise Slim
Picture a thinner you in your mind—either from the past or how you'd like to be. Visual motivation helps focusonachievingyourgoalweight.