How to Eat to Lose Weight

Learning how to eat to lose weight for good will often mean making a commitment to some life long changes – but it’s not as hard as it sounds I can assure you. In this post I will show you how to do this simply, easily and effectively, with no restrictive diets, just proper wholesome low GI foods.

First of all, don’t be put off by the sound of ‘life long changes’, just remember that short term diets don’t really work. Yes, you may initially lose the weight you wanted to lose, but what happens then? Your diet is over, you’ve reached your goal, and more often than not you will slowly but surely slip into old eating patterns again.

 

The yoyo dieting cycle:

This leads to you not only gaining back all of your hard lost weight, but often a bit more on top. And so begins a cycle of yoyo dieting – each time it just gets harder and harder to lose the gained weight, and in the process you start to mess up your metabolism completely. This is a pattern I was stuck in for years (probably since the age of 14 – in the late 80’s, when those ‘lose 10lbs in 3 days’ types of diets were everywhere!). 

 

Short term weight loss problems

Yes, they work in the short term IF you have the willpower to starve yourself, but it is really only water loss and maybe a bit of muscle, which is a very bad thing that I will speak more about later. Put simply, your body goes into starvation mode when you restrict calories too far. You may seem to lose weight at first, but then fearing that food is scarce your body will go into starvation mode and actually hold onto fat!  

 

The vicious cycle of yoyo dieting:

And as soon as you go back to your old ways of eating you just pile it all back on again very quickly and usually MORE, and find all your hard weight loss efforts have not only been a waste of time, but you have actually done more harm than good!

And so another vicious cycle begins and your life becomes a misery, hence my point about the need to make life long changes by eating healthily and exercising regularly, all of which helps to keep your body in balance and your blood sugars stable.

 

BENEFITS OF STABLE BLOOD SUGAR ON WEIGHT

 

honey on toast

Stable blood sugar really is the cornerstone of good health and this cannot be emphasised enough, especially when it comes to keeping excess weight off and the body in fat burning mode. It really is this simple, and learning to eat low GI (GI is the glycemic index, which refers to how quickly the sugar in foods are released into the bloodstream) will be of huge benefit to you not only in your weight loss efforts, but for your overall health in the long term.

To find out all the foods you can eat for boosting weight loss then please read here about low glycemic foodsand see how simple and easy it is to start using these fast fat burning tactics that will help keep you in shape forever!

 

Examples of high GI foods that contain simple sugars are:-

  • White sugar
  • Syrups
  • Refined white flour
  • White bread
  • White Rice
  • White pasta

(ALL OF THESE ARE INCLUDED IN MOST CONFECTIONERY, CAKES, BISCUITS, JUNK FOODS AND SWEETS). 

 

Refined Carbohydrates:

During their refining process these foods have had a lot of their fiber and nutrients taken out. It is the fiber and nutrients in a food that would normally slow down the release of sugars into the bloodstream, but when they are taken out our bodies don’t have to do the hard work of breaking them down. This will mean the sugars in these refined carbohydrates hit the blood stream almost instantly, starting directly inside the mouth through receptors on the tongue.

It is this fast release of sugar that causes a bigger than should be insulin response to mop up all that sugar in the bloodstream. These sugars are then directed to the liver where they are metabolised, and unless you are about to embark on a hard workout they will more than likely be stored as fat. Usually the dangerous kind of fat which is belly fat!

Find out more about low carb plant based fat burning foods in my ultimate ‘Low Carbohydrate Foods Guide’.

 

FRUIT SUGARS

Most free sugars such as white sugar, syrups and high fructose corn syrup are derived of mostly glucose (which is actually essential for every cell in our body) and fructose. Fructose is the sugar that essentially gets stored as fat – this does not mean you shouldn’t eat fruit, as the fructose in fruit when eaten whole is not processed in the same way as free sugars. This is because it also has a high fiber and nutrient content which slows it down.

However, you should eat high sugar fruits such as pineapples, mangoes, bananas, grapes, pomegranates and papayas in moderation if you are trying to lose weight as they are much higher in calories than the lower sugar fruits.

 

Fruit juices – not as healthy as you may think!

glass of orange juice

Fruit juices are a definate no no as they are concentrated forms of fructose, and have usually been pasturised (losing many of their their nutrients and live enzymes in the process) and have had their fiber taken out.

Even juices from the whole fruit with bits are not good, for the simple reason you can easily consume 8 or 9 juiced oranges in one drink, taking in way too much fructose too quickly. This amount of fruit is something you wouldn’t be able to do if you were to eat those whole oranges separately, therefore  it’s just not natural to consume that amount of fructose in one go. 

 

HOW TO EAT TO LOSE WEIGHT

peanut butter and rice crackers

As mentioned before, losing weight and more importantly keeping it off for good requires some lifelong changes to your diet. The secret is to eat low GI foods AND to combine fats, proteins and carbohydrates into every meal or snack. This helps to slow down the release of sugars into the blood, which in turn doesn’t promote the high insulin response  that promotes fat storage.

Below is a list of the 6 basic rules that should become part of your habits around food and if you apply these daily you will soon start seeing big changes.

For more help on clearing your cupboards of junk food and finding healthy alternatives please read my post ‘Clearing Cupboards and Eating Clean’.Here you will find 10 easy steps you can set in motion today that will start you on your path to super health and beauty.

 

1. ALWAYS EAT WHOLEGRAINS 

This means wholegrain pastas, breads, rices, buckwheat, quinoa, oatmeal, oats, millet, and cracked wheat. Cut out anything refined such as free sugars, confectionary, pastries, white bread, rice and pasta. Swap regular chocolate for at least 70% cacao chocolate as it is rich and you will not need to eat as much, plus it is high in antioxidants and has MANY other chocolaty benefits.

 

2. FOOD COMBINING

Never eat refined carbohydrates or fast sugars alone (and especially not on an empty stomach) if you want to keep trim and blood sugar stable. Always try to combine low GI carbs in a ratio of roughly 2:1 with a protein such as soy, nuts, seeds and pulses, also add a little healthy fat (if not already available in the protein) such as olive oil, avocado, coconut oil, tahini. 

For example, a perfect low GI meal or snack could be a slice of wholegrain toast with tahini and smashed avocado. This has all the elements of low GI carbs with plenty of protein and healthy fat, making it a great fat burning meal.

 

3. EAT LOTS OF FRUIT AND VEG

mixed salad vegetables

You need at least 7-10 portions – yes this may seem hard but it’s not really, not when you get into a routine and it becomes a habit. You can easily add a couple of pieces of chopped fruit onto your morning oatmeal, or add a side salad to your lunch, have a green smoothie for your afternoon snack, and steamed vegetables with your dinner…simple!

 

Raw as possible is best for many foods!

Whenever possible always eat raw or very lightly cooked vegetables as this way they will retain more of their nutrients and fiber, therefore filling you up for longer and making them lower GI.

 

4. EAT A RAINBOW OF COLOURS

This means an array of all the different coloured fruits and vegetables. It is the actual colour pigment that gives fruits and vegetables thier bright colour and is where the goodness of their antioxidants and flavenoids lie. These are the active compounds that not only help mop up free radicals in the body, but are anti aging and help lower the risk of many diseases.

Eating a rainbow of colours such as blueberries, dark green leafy veg, carrots and colourful bell peppers, will give you such a wonderful array of vitamins and minerals that it will cut down DRASTICALLY your cravings for bad foods, as your body will be satisfied and not ‘starving’ of nutrients.

 

5. INCORPORATE SPECIFIC FAT BURNING FOODS

green juice drink

There are many specific fat burning foods that can help you to lose unwanted fat, such as almonds, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, hemp seeds, nutritional yeast, pulses, wholegrains, cacoa, spirulina, chlorella, wheatgrass, cinnamon, broccoli, berries, grapefruit, green tea, coconut oil, AND my personal favorite that has the unique antioxidants that will make you sparkle from the inside out – ‘Green Super Food Powder’.

 

Thank you for reading this article, do you have anything you would like to ask about weight loss and fat burning? If so, [lease post your messages below and I will be happy to help.

 

 

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Stefanie Taylor

I have studied nutrition for many years, and have since discovered that a plant based diet has been the most beneficial to my health and body. I have more energy and zest for life than I have ever had and this website is dedicated to helping others who wish to know more, and start out on this lifestyle.

6 Comments

Penelope · 29/11/2017 at 9:13 pm

I had no idea that avocados and coconut oil were fat burning foods! Very cool. I do feel much better when I eat carbs in combination with fat and protein, as you suggest. must slow down the absorption or something – I don’t get the same “sugar high” that way. Thanks for the great tips!

    Stefanie Taylor · 30/11/2017 at 8:35 pm

    Hi Penelope, yes isn’t it great that some fats help burn fat! I think moderation is key with that though, like with everything in life. I eat an avocado every day and I know it helps keep my weight off due to it keeping blood sugar stable. Before I started doing this I found it hard to control my weight so I have tried and tested this one for myself. And yes, I always combine my carbohydrates with protein and fats, it really keeps me stable, including my mood, especially at certain times of the month.

ModernJ · 29/11/2017 at 11:25 pm

What a great article! You have answered some of my biggest questions in one article. I am curious though, with the lean meats, is it OK to stick to antelope, elk or deer?

    Stefanie Taylor · 30/11/2017 at 8:20 pm

    Hi there, I am very pleased to hear that I have helped you with my article. That really brings a smile to my face, as helping people understand nutrition is the reason I have started this website. In answer to your question, yes, you can eat these meats but I would probably stick to red meat just once or twice a week. It didn’t occur to me to mention these meats as we never or rarely eat them here in Britain. In fact I have never tried any of them in my life ha ha.

zebra36 · 30/11/2017 at 3:13 am

Thanks for this great information! Several great tips here that I really need to put into practice. It’s interesting that you say not to eat carbs/sugars alone on an empty stomach. Is there a reason for that? I would’ve thought that it would actually be better. I thought the body would be more likely to burn those when you need food and less likely to store it away as extra weight. Just curious! Thank you again!

    Stefanie Taylor · 30/11/2017 at 10:14 am

    Hi there and thanks for reading the article. Yes, I see your point about burning carbs on an empty stomach. And actually the answer is a bit complicated because it depends on various other factors. But the main the reason why you shouldn’t do it (and I’m talking about simple carbohydrates here as in white sugars/flours), is because when your stomach is completely empty you literally have nothing in it for it to ‘mix’ with and help slow down those high GI sugars. This will elicit a massive insulin response causing most of that sugar to be stored as fat. This is not good for many reasons, the main being that causing the body to have this response regularly can cause insulin resistance type 2 diabetes which is one of the biggest medical conditions of our age – and directly because of too much sugar in our diets, and sugar being eaten at the wrong times in the wrong way. 

    Yes, in this situation you may burn a little off as energy, but your body will still have this insulin reaction regardless, and you may get away with it slightly more if you are about to do a hard workout/exercise. Even then it is not advisable as you should be going for more slower release carbohydrates that naturally contain some protein and fiber. An example is wholegrain bread as it’s still predominantly a carb but also contains fiber and protein.

    The only time you can ever really get away with eating fast GI carbs is after hard exercise when you have depleted your glycogen stores. If you eat fast carbs in this situation the sugars will go straight to the muscles to refuel, and not stored as fat.

    So the best thing to do is if you really must eat refined carbohydrates then make sure you are also having some fat or protein (ideally both) with it as this will slow down the release of the sugar and help negate the insulin response. 

    Hope this is clear and sorry it is so long, it’s quite hard to explain. Thanks

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