Monday, 9 November 2015

5 weight loss tweaks

When the scales stall despite your best efforts, try these tips.

Water is a great weight-loss tool, experts say. A recent US study found middle-aged adults who drank 500 millilitres of water prior to meals, three times a day, shed about 2.3 kilograms more over 12 weeks than those who didn't. Dietitian Lisa Renn says: "The critical thing from that study was they were drinking before eating, decreasing their stomach capacity and eating smaller portions."

2. Don't refuel all day
Are you always sipping a coffee or eyeing the biscuit jar? Stop. Balanced eating - consuming a portion-controlled meal or snack every two to three hours - keeps blood-sugar levels stable and helps you recognise true hunger, whereas constant refuelling just adds extra calories you don't need, Renn says.

3. Start resistance training
The body's ultimate fat burner is muscle, which you can't build on the treadmill. "The more lean tissue you have, the more efficient you are at burning calories, and you can only build lean tissue through resistance training," Renn says. "You should move every day, but for weight loss, do both resistance and high-intensity interval training at least twice a week."

4. Ditch the wrong carbs and add protein
Processed, high-GI carbohydrates such as sweets, white bread, pasta or juice shoot through the body's digestion and trigger insulin. Too many of these foods, and too much insulin, can lead to weight gain and type 2 diabetes, so opt for low-GI carbs such as wholegrain breads, oats and fruit. Renn suggests adding protein - light ham, tuna, chicken, four-bean mix - to meals and snacks to help with satiety.

5. Keep on "surprising" your body
Our bodies adapt quickly to exercise, so change your program at least every six weeks, personal trainer Rebecca Rule says. "Make it harder for yourself. If you're not falling off the treadmill after 20 minutes of high-intensity interval training, you're not blasting it hard enough. And with resistance training, if you can get through your 10 reps with ease, the weight's not heavy enough. We underestimate our potential. It's at the point of exhaustion and pushing ourselves beyond what we think we can actually do that we see results."


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