Just a few simple changes to your eating habits can make a lot of difference to your life.These changes make you slimmer,fitter and healthier and all that it requires is determination from your side ! You don't really have to overhaul drastically what you eat nor are you required to follow a punishing exercise regime to reap the benefits of a healthier lifestyle. Making just a few simple changes to your diet can improve your heath dramatically.This has been proved by a team of researchers from Oxford and Liverpool universities in UK , who studied the eating habits of people who had died from heart diseases.They found that making just three easy diet changes - eating one gram less of salt, one extra helping of fruit and vegetables and swapping saturated oils for unsaturated oils could save many lives a year.

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Keeping those findings in mind here are some small changes that could help you lose unwanted body weight and also boost your long-term health.

1. Buy smaller plates and shrink your serving spoons

Apparently ,size does matter where plates and bowls are concerned .According to statistics people tend to eat more from a larger plate since the normal tendency is to fill your plate.Most People tend to eat everything that is on their plate even when they don’t find the food tasty or appetising. Once you assign a small plate for stuff like rice,curry,rotis,pasta and a large bowl for salads , soups and fruits your task becomes that much easier.When this becomes a practice you can actually calculate the calories that are being deducted from your system. The same goes for your serving spoons.When you use a large serving spoon the portions will naturally be larger.It can make a difference of 30% more or less food on your plate depending on the size of your serving spoon

2. Sit down and Eat more slowly

You will eat at least 15 – 20% less and fewer calories if you sit down and eat more slowly.When you eat fast it is very likely that your hypothalamus (which is the part of our brain that send out signals when you are full) does not receive the right feed back and you may feel hungrier sooner.Timing yourself when you eat fast and again eating the same meal 50% more slowly can help you determine if you feel fuller later.This is one of the reasons why family meals have been in vogue where people take their time to eat slowly as they relax with the family members exchanging their days activities.It is also highly recommended that you have proper lights in your dining room since dim lights have a way of increasing your inhibitions and you end up eating more.Eating in front of the TV is also not a healthy habit since it causes people to consume on an average of 150 calories more than those who eat in less distracting ,quieter and serene environments.

3. Cut down on liquid calories not liquid diet

Many people have the habit of consuming large amount of juices, soft drinks ,lattes , wines ,beer ,liquor and other liquids thinking that they don’t add up and make any great difference to their diet. According to statistics on an average nearly 11 -20% of our daily calories are consumed through liquids.It is advisable to switch over to minimal calorie drinks like herbal water, herbal tea ,tender coconut water,lime juice or plain water which helps you lose almost 2 -3 kgs a month.It is also healthier to have fruit juices prepared at home , a combination of fruits and vegetables juices help the system without adding too many calories. In fact including more liquids like butter milk, clear soups, vegetable and fruit juices in your diet, not only helps in reducing your weight, it also adds a glow to your skin and sheen and volume to your hair.

4. Water is the solution

Drinking lots of water definitely has its long term and dietary benefits.Starting your day with 2 or 3 glasses of water helps in cleansing your system.Most nutritional experts recommend that to remain healthy each individual should consume at least 2 or 3 liters of water each day.Drinking a glass of water 20 minutes before your meal is very beneficial to those who want to lose weight or maintain their weight. Dieters tend to lose more weight when they drink more water and also have a glass of water before they eat their meals.Carry water with you when you have to go out for a long period of time, this stops you from buying bottled drinks when you feel thirsty.

 

 

5. Cut down on cheese,heavy salad dressings,cream,butter and Ghee..

Subtle changes to the ingredients of an Omelette like cutting down on butter and cheese helps by cutting down at least 150 -200 calories.The same with salads – use less salad creams because an average serving of salad cream can add up to 60 calories.Instead using lime juice,salt and pepper not only adds to the taste but also helps in keeping your skin glowing.Make it a point to eat salads for every meal preferably before the main meal.This cuts down your intake drastically and you may save at least a 100 calories each time. So, drinking a glass of water and later starting your meal with a bowl of salad is highly recommended for those who want to remain fit and healthy.

6. Include Yogurt in your diet

Yogurt is very healthy and it can be had in a number of ways along with your meal , in your salads ,Raita or even plain .Eating a dessert of fruits and sweetened yogurt takes care of your craving for sweet dish after a meal as well as helps your system by balancing out the calories. Two scoops of ice cream or a bar of chocolate contains 250-265 calories and when you swap that with fresh yogurt you save at least 180 calories.If you include 3 helpings of yogurt in your diet you could cut down as much as 180 calories which adds up in the long run .The reason is that calcium contained in the yogurt may hinder fat storage and boost fat loss by tricking the metabolism into working overtime.

7. Cut down on red meats

Cutting down on red meats is helpful and healthy , instead include paneer,tofu or mushrooms all of which have similar tastes but less calories.Cutting down on red meats can bring down your calorie intake by as much as 400 calories per serving.Sea food is another option which can be tried out but prawns and lobsters are laden with calories though not as mush as red meat ,so it is better to stick to fish and opt for a smaller helping of other sea food .Swapping an all meat pizza to a classic vegetarian one can save you nothing less than 120- 140 calories.

8. Sleep Early

Have an early night like people did  during the good old days when there was no TV,Internet or any other diversion to keep them awake.If you get an extra hour and a half of sleep you will probably eat fewer calories the next day. Scientists have discovered that people who sleep five to five and a half hour each night munched at least 200 -250 calories in the form of snacks than those who hit the sack early and slept for 7 -8 hours at night. So sleeping early has all round health benefits - you wake up early and would probably go for a brisk walk, thereby further adding to your feeling of wellness.

Ways To Curb Your Cravings

  1. When we analyse our days activities we see that it is towards the afternoon that many of us feel low on energy and that's when we are more likely to succumb to a sugar stash.Following a few tips can help you curb your cravings and stick to your healthy diet.
  2. Keep goodies out of sight or even better stop buying goodies in large quantities and storing them.The closer you are to them the more we tend to eat and stuff ourselves so keep them as far as away as possible.
  3. Many people tend to skip or hurry through their breakfast or even have a frugal lunch only to have hunger pangs strike later in the day.It is very essential to plan and eat a healthy breakfast,lunch and dinner which include a balance of carbohydrates,protein,good fats and vitamins ..Eating every three hours is a good practice since it keep the blood sugar levels steady and will bring down the craving as well.
  4. Eating everything in moderation is a very healthy habit .When we do this everyday at every meal our intake reduces gradually and the result shows in a matter of weeks.This is one of the most helpful tips to reduce and also part of developing healthy eating habits.This also reduces our craving for food.
  5. As I have already mentioned earlier ,including yogurt in your diet has many health benefits.Yogurt is a valuable health food for both infants and elderly people with minor ailments . For children, it is one of the most balanced source of protein, fats, carbohydrates, and minerals in a texture that most kids love unless they are allergic to lactobacillus. For those, who usually have sensitive digestive systems yogurt proves to be a valuable food. The live bacterial cultures present in yogurt can help replenish the intestines with helpful bacteria before the harmful ones take over.
  6. Green vegetable salads can be eaten all the time whenever you have a craving for food. It also helps in eliminating toxins from our system and bad breath and inhibits Candida ( which is a yeast overgrowth found in the gut ).Vegetables like carrots , amaranth,sweet potatoes and drum stick leaves contain a lot of Vitamin A that is helpful in skin care. Parsley is another leafy vegetable which is very helpful in lowering blood pressure and also in fighting allergy reactions by inhibiting the production of Histamines.
  7. Instead of reaching out for chips,fries, savory and other fat and spice filled snacks have a few nuts like almonds,wall nuts or even a few raisins which is a far more healthier option.
  8. Distracting yourself is the best option when you feel a craving for food when you are working in front of the computer and feel the need to munch on something.Make a phone call or do some other activity that needs to be done around the house or go for a brisk walk but don't give in to your cravings.

Finally, how do you distinguish between cravings and genuine hunger.Wait for ten minutes and see if your hunger has increased.If you are genuinely hungry eat fruits , a bowl of yogurt or salad, all of which will look tasty when one is really hungry.. Small changes go a long way and cutting down and trimming your diet will have a lot of health benefits for you and your entire family.


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