Counting calories sucks. I’ve been there and done that. It may seem helpful in theory, but the truth is that it gets annoying and frustrating. And, it can even make you feel like you’re starving yourself. Instead of counting calories, you can work on approaching weight loss with more long-term solutions. The following tips look well beyond numbers and more on what you’re putting in your body.
Give Yourself the Right Nutrients
When your body is nutrient-deficient in even one nutrient, it can get thrown out of whack. You might experience higher stress levels and more depressed moods than usual. Nutrients affect everything from sleep and energy to moods. When you don’t have enough of something, your body feels it and can do some crazy things. What is the culprit of most nutrient deficiencies? Processed foods.
I know, they’re convenient. They’re yummy. And they’re usually quite budget-friendly. But they are not good for our bodies. At all. Processed foods don’t give us everything we need to stay healthy and instead give us a lot of what makes us unhealthy. Balanced meals with lots of whole foods, though, give us all the nutrients we need. Seratonin, for example, comes from foods like eggs, cheese, and turkey. This hormone is responsible for healthy sleeping patterns. If you don’t have enough of it, you may have restless nights of sleep, which can affect your mood, energy level, and metabolism the next day. Out with the processed and in with the real foods!
Get Going on Your Gut
A healthy gut is the key to a healthy body. Really. Your gut – as in your stomach, colon, and everything else digestive – is like the brain for your metabolism. If it’s healthy, it’s likely that you’ll have a healthy metabolism. The way it stays healthy is by feeding it really good, nutritious meals that contain little to no foods that guts don’t like. Things like grains, spicy foods, and dairy products, for example, can cause excess gas buildup that makes your gut unhappy.
You can always try an elimination diet to see what foods might affect you most. Cut one type of food, like dairy, out of your diet for a week. Notice a difference? Then that’s one food you’ll want to cut back on for a healthier gut!
Cut Down on Bloat and Inflammation
You know that feeling you get when you’re super-stuffed from a delicious meal? Your belly feels bigger (and your pants are probably tighter) and you feel sluggish, right? That’s probably because you’re bloated. Bloating is like an inflammation of the gut caused by gas and excess water. If you continue to eat until you’re so full you can’t move, you’ll consistently look up to 25 pounds heavier than you are.
Again, processed foods are a huge problem for bloating and inflammation. But, so are painkillers and alcohol. The more whole, real foods you add into your diet, the less bloated you’ll feel. And, you could even drop several pounds of water weight without doing anything else but some dietary tweaks.