We usually are focused on what we need to do in order to loose weight — special dieting, exercise, water intake, etc. — but we rarely think about actions and habits we need to avoid while on the same weight loss path. This article will give some tips on common mistakes people tend to make while trying to lose weight and get over that plateau that has you ripping your hair out in frustration.
1. The Same Diet
The same diet may not work for you at 150 lbs that was working at 165 lbs. For instance, many people turn to coffee for the caffeine stimulant to boost their metabolism and suppress their appetite, and they may have seen great results in the beginning. However, what you put in your coffee can make all the difference, especially when you are drinking it every day. Try changing from a regular latte to using skim milk, or ditch the latte altogether and go with black coffee or tea without milk. This same principle can apply to any other mixed foods recipe you consume such as hot oatmeal, breakfast cereals, omelettes, soups, etc.
2. Skipping Meals
At first it makes perfect logical sense in our brains: less food intake equals less fat. But the truth is that it takes a toll on your metabolism when you skip meals. Your metabolism needs to be stimulated in order to run higher. This means we need to actually eat more often throughout the day. Every 3 – 4 hours, you should eat something, even if it is small, to help keep your metabolism high or else your body will begin to store calories instead of burn them.
3. Reward Foods
It’s amazing how much weight you can lose over a period of time just from being more active or adding mere hard walks or daily jogs into your schedule — it burns a so many calories and makes you want to eat more which leads many people to the conclusion that exercise increases metabolism. However, it actually lowers the metabolism because our bodies see the need for storing calories for upcoming exercise, which can lead to the desire to eat more to gain those calories back, and then store them again. So, if you jog in the morning and then sit on your butt the rest of the day at the office, you are most likely going to store more calories than you burn off in the morning. In fact, it takes quite a bit of exercise to burn off the 3500 calories in 1 pound of fat since you only burn off about 200 calories from a typical exercise routine. That means all the extra calories coming in throughout the day are going to be putting on the pounds.
Therefore, what many people see as a small reward for their exercise (a cream puff here, a jelly donut there) may actually have devastating effects on their diet. Stay away from reward foods as much as you can, regardless of the day or time and regardless of how logical it seems. Reward foods only make it harder to lose the weight!
4. Diet Soda
Some people are crazy about diet soda: they drink it 5-6 times a day and think the lack of sugar and high caffeine is going to help, but it’s actually considered overkill because artificial sweeteners increase insulin flow in your system which can lead to damaged arteries among other health defects.
5. Natural Food Labels
Just because a box or bag says “natural” does not mean that it is. It’s a common advertising tactic to put words like “natural”, “healthy” and “organic” into labeling to lure more customers, but those words may only apply to specific parts of the food and not the whole package. What is important for you to remember is that any food that comes prepackaged should be considered on a case by case basis by reading the ingredients and nutritional value on the package before purchasing.
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