31. Gulp H2O
Kick the diet beverages and vitamin enhanced money traps and reach for good ‘ole H2O instead. Drinking water helps people feel full, and as a result, consume fewer calories. Drinking water also significantly elevates resting energy expenditure (basically the number of calories we’d burn if we sat around all day) and lower water intake is associated with obesity.
32. Sip Before Noshing
Pregame a meal with a glass of water has been linked with more weight loss than cutting calories alone. Take some mid-set breaks and guzzle a little water between bites too to give the brain time to register fullness.
33. Cut Back on Liquid Calories
Milk and cookies, orange juice and French toast, wine and cheese—some foods seemingly require a liquid counterpart. But, it’s easy to pour on the pounds by chugging soda, juice, alcohol, and even milk. Sugar sweetened beverages are associated with increased body fat and blood pressure.
34. Water it Down
When you’ve simply got to have a swig of juice with that morning bowl of oatmeal, try watering it down. While it may sound entirely unappealing, gradually adding more water to less juice will keep some of the flavor without all the sugar and calories. Added incentive: Increasing water intake in place of sugar-sweetened beverages or fruit juices is associated with lower long-term weight gain.
35. Choose Tall and Thin
So we know we said to cut back on the juice and soda, but when you’ve got a hankering from some morning orange juice, reach for a tall thin glass, not a short squat one. While it may sound like you’re discriminating against your glasses, research shows that people pour less liquid into tall narrow glasses than into their vertically challenged counterparts, meaning we’ll ultimately (probably) drink less in one sitting. This is especially helpful when drinking alcohol.
36. Banish the Booze
We probably don’t have to tell you that partying like an undergrad may pack on a few pounds. And you’ve likely heard the phrase “drink in moderation.” The point is, alcohol houses a lot of sneaky calories and it has the ability to inhibit eating decisions (candy, greasy pizza) later on in the night. Even after you’ve sobered up, alcohol can have negative impacts on strength and may leave you lagging in the weight room days later.
37. Brush Those Pearly Whites
After dinner, go ahead and brush your teeth. Getting minty fresh breath not only has the obvious oral health benefits, but can also keep you from mindlessly snacking while watching a TV show. Not a bad idea to hit up the floss, too. Once both deeds are done, we may be more inclined to keep our mouths clean before bed.
38. Set Realistic Goals
It’s easy, especially come New Year’s resolution season, to set some pretty unrealistic goals about weight loss (fit into skinny jeans in three days!). Since impractical goals can slow down long-term weight-loss, it’s important to address those goals before making any health and fitness changes.
39. Portion Patrol
Practicing portion control is one of the easiest, most reliable ways to lose weight, but it’s not an easy task. Portion distortion is ever present, but it may help to use portion visuals, for instance — a serving of chicken (3 ounces) is roughly the size of a deck of cards.
40. Stay Positive
Many of us demonize certain foods, and even punish ourselves for certain indulgences. Instead, positive messages like “I can control my eating” or “I’m proud that I ate responsibly today” can re-frame our relationship with food. Research shows that positive expectations are also associated with weight loss.
More tips will be in Part V.