6 ideas for improved weight management.

There is so much conflicting information about how best to lose fat. And with so many factors to consider it is easy to make mistakes.

Here are some of the things which you might not yet have considered in your effort to lose body fat.

Don't expect over night success, it took time to put on the weight it will take time to lose it. Make the goal to live a healthy lifestyle rather than just to 'lose weight'.

1: You’re eating too many high Glycaemic load foods: Your body can only use so much energy at any one time and this can depend on your age, height weight and activity levels. when you consume foods which release their energy quickly when digested (High GL) your body responds with a high insulin level which can lead to fat storage, a blood sugar low or 'crash' can also follow. Eating Low GL foods will control blood insulin levels by releasing energy slowly. Eat unrefined foods, combine carbohydrates with protein and also healthy fats to reduce the GL of the meal.

Cutting down starches and sugar through the day and replacing with fruit and veg is a good swap.

2: You’re not weight training effectively: Or maybe you're not weight training at all? C.V exercise is a great tool for fat burning, especially when matched with weight training. Your weight workouts need to be challenging, You need to maintain good technique using the full range of motion and lift slowly. You need to keep rest periods between 30 – 60 seconds between sets and should be doing mainly compound movements.

Lifting helps maintain muscle mass which is often lost when you are trying to lose fat and also keeps your metabolism high which promotes fat loss.

3: You need more fibre: Fibre can be found in fruit, vegetables and grains. they slow the speed that food moves through the digestive tract and allows better absorbtion of nutrients and keeps you feeling full for longer.

The fibre in your diet is also important for a healthy gut and slows the absorption of food form your stomach, which can help control blood sugar levels.

4: Stress/lack of sleep: lack of sleep and stress can both increase the release of a hormone called cortisol which raises your blood sugar levels. Researchers believe that repeated bouts of stress can increase the liklihood of weight gain and diabetes.

A lack of sleep and increased stress can lead to eating more, and poorer food choices. Prioritise your sleep…

5: You’re not eating enough / fasting: Starving yourself for hours on end is counter intuitive, it may be that intermittent fasting and calorie counting is popularised as a weight control method, but it isn’t effective at maintaining muscle mass and ensuring adequate energy for exercise or recovery from hard training. Low energy levels lead to lethargy, hypoglycaemia, stress, reduced ability to burn fat and poor hormonal balance.

Keep yourself nourished throughout the day with small meals frequently or less frequent more sustainable meals, this will keep your metabolism up and help you burn more fat.

6: lack of micro nutrients and healthy fats: We need optimal levels of vitamins and minerals for energy release, optimal metabolic function, cell growth and repair. Healthy fats help maintain a healthy hormonal balance and help your body use vitamins. You can get your vitamins and minerals from nuts, seeds, beans, fresh fruit and vegetables and meats. Healthy fats can come from seeds, nuts, oily fish, olives, avocado and supplements.

Reduce refined foods and replace with nutrient dense foods, this will nourish your body, optimise energy levels and reduce cravings. And dont forget to get your vitamin D this summer by getting out in the sun!

Something else: Some people are insulin resistant or have an under active thyroid, these are both reasons why some people struggle to lose fat which need to be diagnosed, but explore other avenues first.

Alcohol consumption is also a big factor, dubbed the ‘empty calories’ a term which can actually apply to any junk food; alcohol in most forms are loaded with sugar and have nearly as many calories per measure as fat.

Don't try and cut corners by following quick fix diets, they often damage your metabolism by cutting calories too low or promise great things by following unsustainable rules.

When losing fat you are trying to speed up your metabolism (eat well and often, train hard and briefly)

Keep your hormones in 'fat burning mode' (reduce sugar and stimulants, reduce stress and sleep enough, eat healthily)

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