5 life hacks to lose weight that don’t involve food

Banting is not only about diet. At RMR, achieving health and weight loss is also about how you take the journey. Here are five life hacks that go well beyond the food you eat.

Get your beauty sleep.

Poor sleep messes with your hormones, in particular, cortisol (the stress hormone), leptin (the satiety hormone) and ghrelin (the hunger hormone).

Cortisol plays a role in eating and sleeping; it tracks the rhythm of waking and sleeping, and in the morning, our bodies wake us up with a mixture of hormones: growth, cortisol, and adrenaline to get us going. But, if you struggle to sleep your body will be producing too much cortisol. Meantime, Leptin goes up, and ghrelin goes down, stimulating hunger and of course, weight gain.

Stress and lack of sleep lead to further snacking, raising levels of insulin. The more often you eat and the less time you give your body to recover its sensitivity to insulin, the more likely you are to develop insulin resistance, and ultimately, to Type II Diabetes.

A new study published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition has found that sleep-deprived individuals can eat as much as an extra four and a half slices of bread the following morning!

Narrow your daily eating window.

A recent study suggests that the time of day you eat has an impact on your metabolism. According to your body’s internal clock, your body functions better in the morning, so there may be some merit to breakfast being the most important meal of the day. Or rather, the focus should be on eating your biggest meals of the day in a narrow window, ideally between 8am and 2pm, according to this study.

Most Banters will tell you that they have naturally leaned towards eating two meals a day, preferably within a six- to eight-hour window. Which two meals they prefer depends on the individual. What is important to realise is that the longer you give your body time to digest food and stop producinginsulin, the better it will be for your hormones and overall weight loss.

We naturally fast when we’re asleep, so eating your last meal at about 6pm, will give your body time to digest the food before bed and also will give your body a chance to burn your body fat, instead of burning the food you’re consuming.

For more on intermittent fasting read what Dr. Jason Fung has to say here.

Fall in love with the process.

Decide on the goal you want to set yourself and keep yourself motivated by visualising how you’ll be at the finish line. (Do you want that six-pack? To look good in a swimming costume? To be able to climb a mountain? The first step to achieving any goal is being able to visualise it in your mind’s eye.)

However, try not be so fixated on the end product that you lose focus on the here and now, and become disappointed. It’s really important to fall in love with the process. Enjoy the subtle changes to your lifestyle and embrace the small improvements you are making.  After all, you can only change something in the present moment. And a string of present moments leads to the end goal.

Make small changes.

As we’ve seen from step three above, changing lifestyle is a process. A classic error is to charge into a new regimen, put yourself under too much pressure, and give up, accompanied by self-destructive feelings of guilt. As the cliché goes, “slow and steady wins the race.” Start off by making one change like giving yourself half an hour after work to take a relaxing walk in your neighborhood. Then, when you are enjoying the change, try replacing electronic media with reading a good book in the evening. When these activities have become habits you are comfortable with, and you’re feeling more energetic, you might want to incorporate some more vigorous exercise into your day.

As you progress, remember step three: focus on enjoying the process and listen to your body. If it feels right to up your challenge a bit more, go for it.

Track your progress.

When you’re feeling down, it’s easy to forget the progress you’ve made. In Banting 2.0 we start out by doing a reality check and observing the behaviour we will soon be changing. If you haven’t already done so, take a before picture and take your measurements. In step three you will have set your goal.  Now start a diary: you can write about your feelings, emotions and your progress with your food. Take note of how you feel when you eat certain things and how you choose to overcome certain situations.

When you feel like giving up, look back at how far you’ve come. Be strong. Stay on your path. Never stop going. Looking back at your progress can give you the push to carry on moving forward. Improvements, no matter how small are all reasons to keep going.

Everything in life should be an enjoyable process, including weight loss. By enjoying the process, making small changes, and getting enough rest, you will not only achieve your health goals, but more importantly, find yourself leading a sustainable lifestyle that we call Awesome!

To start your journey to awesome, take our Online Program now.