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Let’s be honest: The only healthy way to lose weight and keep it off is by eating right and staying active.

In honor of Healthy Weight Week, January 19 to 25, here are 5 tips to achieve and maintain a healthy weight:

1.    Watch What You Eat

This point is #1 on our list because it’s the most important point. Whether you want to gain weight, lose weight, or simply maintain your weight, it’s important to keep an eye on what you put in your mouth.

Human beings evolved eating protein, vegetables and some fat. This is what our bodies are designed to use to create energy. Today, most of us eat way too much refined sugar and carbohydrates, which turn into sugar.

Consuming too much sugar leads to insulin resistance, a metabolic condition where your cells are not able to utilize all the sugar you consume. Your body’s solution to this is to turn the extra sugar into fat. Excess weight around the waist is a tell-tale sign of insulin resistance.

Reduce your intake of sugar, including carbohydrates, and you’ll have a much easier time getting to your ideal weight and staying there.

2.    Beware of Fad Diets

It seems like there’s a new celebrity fad diet making the rounds on social media every other week. It’s no surprise that most of these fad diets don’t work; you may lose weight initially but will usually put it back on again. Some of the fads can even be detrimental to your health.

Get back to basics by eating natural, whole foods, particularly nutrient-dense foods, as these provide your body with the nutrition it needs to function at its best. Make vegetables a major part of your meals each day, no matter what diet you are following.

Cut out processed foods, as they usually contain sugar, sodium and preservatives, and provide empty calories. Processed foods are not your friend when it comes to losing weight.

To support your body with enough of the comprehensive nutrition it needs to stay healthy, consider taking a natural, plant-based supplement that provides comprehensive nutrition and minimizes insulin resistance, such as Qgenics Metabolic Boost.

3.    Plan Your Meals

A simple way to keep your weight and diet in check is by planning meals. Plan your meals for the week and don’t deviate from your menu. You can even batch cook meals and store them in your fridge or freezer to make your meal preparation more efficient.

With meals at hand, you’ll be less tempted to rely on takeout food, which is usually much higher in calories than home-cooked meals. Plus, you’ll know exactly what is in your food.

4.    Cardio it Up!

Cardio exercises burn calories. These exercises are any high-intensity exercises that make your heart rate go up, for example running, cycling, aerobics, and swimming.

While cardio exercises are excellent for burning calories at the moment, strength training can help you keep those calories off for good. Strength training increases your basal metabolism for the rest of the day.

A perfect exercise regime includes both strength training and cardio. 30 minutes of exercise at least 5 times a week should be your goal.

5.    Reduce Your Stress

When we’re stressed there’s a tendency to grab “comfort food.” This food is usually high in sugar, carbs and fat and will make losing weight very difficult, if not impossible.

Tips for lowering stress:

  • Get good quality sleep as this lowers stress and is also necessary for weight loss.
  • Limit exposure to people and situations you find stressful. If you can’t do that, have a strategy to handle those situations.
  • If social media stresses you out, take a break from it.
  • Exercise regularly
  • Take time to do activities you really enjoy.

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