There are many natural ways to lose weight, simply by making small dietary and lifestyle changes. The best part about natural weight loss is that these methods will not only help you to lose weight naturally, but they will also help to keep the weight off, without having to count calories! So here we go…
Switch to a Raw Food Diet
The raw food diet is one of the best ways to lose weight naturally, as it is high in fiber. The fiber goes to work immediately to clean out the digestive tract, which helps to improve bowel movements and eliminates other digestive problems as well. In addition, raw foods help to speed up the metabolism, which is essential for weight loss.
If you have been on a conventional diet for your whole life, then raw foods may not be very tasty for you. However, you should start to incorporate healthy raw foods into your diet gradually, and before you know it, you will begin to enjoy the bitter taste of greens. (Well it might take a while, but you’ll get there eventually).
Vegetables. One of the best foods to help you lose weight naturally are vegetables. Vegetables are low in calories, but high in essential nutrients that will help you to avoid food cravings.
Dark green leaf vegetables are the best, as they contain the most calcium, chlorophyll and other vital nutrients. However, root vegetables and other vegetables are just as important and should not be left out.
The best way to eat your vegetables is to eat them raw, as they contain all the natural enzymes so that your body can create its own nutrients. However, if the raw food diet seems strange to you, then you can also steam the vegetables, or add them into your raw smoothies until your taste buds learn to appreciate the raw taste.
Asparagus, broccoli, carrots and eggplant are all excellent when lightly steamed. You can drizzle these vegetables with olive oil and lemon juice for a tasty meal. If desired you can also add some unrefined sea salt.
Smoothies are a healthy and tasty way to add in more leaf vegetables to your diet. Simply add some leaf vegetables to your favorite fruit smoothies to help take the bitterness out.
Fruits. Fruits such as bananas, pears, apples, pineapples, mangoes, kiwis, watermelon, grapes, strawberries, blueberries and raspberries are sweet fruits that will not only satisfy your taste buds, but will help to satisfy your food cravings as well.
You can eat your fruits as they are, or you can incorporate them into smoothies or into fruit salads. Fruit salads are a great substitute for other high calorie desserts.
Avocados. Perhaps you have been told to avoid avocados if you want to lose weight, but to the contrary, avocados should be a part of your daily diet. They are high in healthy fats and lots of nutrient rich calories, which will not only fill you up, but they will also help to maintain that feeling of fullness so that you can avoid other empty and high calorie foods.
Avocados are a complete food, which means that they contain all the essential amino acids that your body needs to build its own protein. Thus they are a great substitute for all meats, as they do not contain any unhealthy fats that will contribute to diseases or unwanted weight gain.
You can add avocados to your vegetable salads, fruit smoothies, dips and spreads, or eat them as they are, right out of the shell with a dash of unrefined sea salt.
Nuts and Seeds. Nuts are also a great substitute for meat as they contain high amounts of proteins and other healthy fats. They are high in nutrient rich calories, which help you to feel full longer.
You can add nuts and seeds to your salads, smoothies, make a nut milk, or eat them by the handful whenever you feel a craving coming on. They are easy to pack into a small bag or container and take with you wherever you go, which will help you avoid other unhealthy snacks.
Chew Your Food
Chewing your food is very important as it helps your body to better digest the food and absorb more nutrients. Thus by taking the time to chew your food you will not need as much, as it will help you to feel fuller.
In addition, chewing your food consciously will help you to enjoy more flavors and thus your taste buds will be more satisfied, which helps to reduce food cravings.
Listen To Your Body
The most important part when it comes to losing weight, is to listen to your body. Your body was designed to let you know when you are hungry, and when you are full. You do not need to count any calories. Therefore when you begin to feel hungry, eat. And when you begin to feel full, stop eating.
However, there are some foods such as meats, which may cause you to overeat because they contain a saturated fat that blocks the signal to your brain that lets you know that you are full. Therefore taking your time to eat slow can help you to avoid overeating on meat.
Eating when you are hungry will prevent you from developing nasty food cravings for sugar. This is because your body is designed to let you know what nutrients it needs, and thus you crave for those foods automatically. But if your body is so depleted of essential nutrients that it has no energy left, then it needs a quick boost, and sugar is the food that will give your body that quick boost. Hence the reason for food cravings.
So when you crave for the chocolate, go ahead and have a piece, but make sure that you also eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables to help restore the nutrients, so that the next time you are hungry you will not be craving for junk foods.
Drink Lots of Fluids
Water and other clean fluids such as tea and freshly made fruit and vegetable juices are very important for optimal health and weight loss.
The standard amount of water is 8 cups a day. Perhaps that is sufficient for you, but to me, that is nothing but a joke. I drink at least 2 to 4 liters of water on any given day. And no, I am not 6 foot tall and weigh 200 pounds; I am just under 5 foot and weigh in at just under 100 pounds. Water gives me energy, and if I don’t drink enough, then I have no energy to carry out my daily activities.
Water also helps to reduce food cravings and hunger. Many people do not realize this, but often when you feel you hungry, you are actually thirsty. Try drinking a glass of water the next time that you are hungry. Chances are within a few minutes your hunger will diminish. However, if the hunger does not go away, then you really are hungry and should eat something.
A juice fast should only be done on a temporary basis and can be done once a week, once a month, or even just once or twice a year for a set period of time. What it does is it basically cleans you out and allows your digestive system to relax during that time. It helps your bowels to become regular again so that your weight loss efforts will pay off more.
If you have never done a juice fast before, then you should only do it for a day or so to make it easier on your body. You should also eat healthy before the fast to help eliminate as many toxins from your body as possible.
Then once your body is free from harmful toxins you can begin to fast for longer periods. The longer you are able to fast, the more toxins will be eliminated from your body, and thus the better you will feel afterward. At the same time however, it is very important that you listen to your body and stop the fast when your body says so.
Getting enough sleep (7-8 hours each night) is also very important as it will help to reduce your stress levels. Chronic stress causes cortisol levels to rise too high in the body, which causes weight gain in the abdomen area.
In addition, studies show that getting adequate sleep increases the production of leptin, which is a hormone that helps to suppress appetite. And when not enough sleep is obtained, then the body increases in grehlin, which increases an appetite for empty calorie carbohydrates.
You do not have to spend a lot of time exercising if you are on a healthy diet. Breaking into a good sweat several times per week is really all you need. You can also engage in moderate strength training if your daily activities do not provide you with enough resistance to maintain your muscle mass.