10 mistakes to avoid when you’re trying to lose weight

Trying to lose weight? Well, good for you! While many people whine about their weight and promise to lose it, they often end up doing nothing about it. So, if you’ve taken that first step towards weight loss, you deserve a pat on the back.

However, as we all know, the weight loss journey can be pretty tough. You need to stay motivated at all times and it’s very easy to slip up and eat something you shouldn’t be eating. It’s also easy to skip a workout because you’ve had a long day or aren’t feeling like it. So, even though you’ve started off on your weight loss journey, there are going to be a couple of mistakes that you may end up making along the way. But don’t worry! As always, we’ve got your back.

Here are the 10 most common mistakes to avoid when you’re trying to lose weight.

1) Eating meat every day

Yes, we know. You love your meat. But did you also know that a recently conducted study showed that those who ate lower levels of meat and animal products were at a reduced risk of being overweight and obese? So, monitor the amount of meat you eat in a day. Give ‘Meatless Mondays’ a go while you’re at it!

2) Drinking your calories

When you’re trying to lose weight, you’re following a certain diet. But very often, you tend to think that processed juices and other sugar-rich beverages can easily be a part of this diet. And that’s where you go wrong. Ditch those sugary drinks for unsweetened tea, green tea or even just plain water.

3) Skipping meals

We know you’ve heard this too many times. But it’s very, very important when it comes to losing weight. It’s easy to believe that skipping meals will help you lose weight faster. But in fact, skipping meals is known to reduce your metabolism rate and that isn’t good news for your body! When you skip meals, there’s also a chance of you overeating at your next meal, because you’re going to be pretty hungry by then. So, avoid this mistake at all costs.

4)   Eating out frequently

We’ve all got social commitments, most of which involve meeting friends at different restaurants for lunch or dinner. Even if you stick to salads and so-called ‘healthy’ options, research suggests that when you eat out, you’re likely to take in approximately 200 more calories than you do when you eat at home! So, try to switch things up and meet your friends or colleagues for other activities. Eat home-cooked meals as much as possible.  

5) Using olive oil in all your meals

While olive oil is definitely a healthy fat option, too much of it is not good. Because it’s considered to be healthy fat, it’s easy to get carried away and use it in all of your meals. But, at the end of the day, oil equals fats and olive oil too, is rich in calories. Of course, don’t avoid it altogether. What we’re trying to say is, cook one of your meals in olive oil instead of all of them. For your other meals, you can try baked, steamed or blanched options.

6)   Using electronic devices while eating

You’re probably going to be surprised by this, but watching TV or using your phone while you eat is known to make you eat more, thereby leading to weight gain instead of loss! When you’re distracted while you eat, you don’t realise how much food you’ve eaten. Weight loss is all about mindful eating but when you do this, you aren’t eating mindfully at all. So, no phones at the table and no television while you eat!

7)   Eating late at night

This is possibly the worst thing you could do when you’re trying hard to lose weight. Yes, late night cravings are a thing but they’re also one of the most simple ways to pack in those extra calories. During the night, your metabolism rate tends to slow down and if you eat during this period, there’s food inside your body which is being digested, but not put to use, which is why it gets stored in the body. And that’s how those love handles tend to build up!

8)   An insufficient protein intake

A diet that contains a sufficient amount of proteins is a good diet. Proteins are known to assist with reducing your appetite, making you feel full for longer lengths of time and boost metabolism remarkably. So, if you’re not eating enough protein, switch up your diet a little and start eating more protein-rich food.

9)   Not drinking enough water

Studies have suggested that as human beings, we often tend to mix up hunger and thirst. So, the next time you feel hungry, try downing a glass of water first. If the hunger pangs pass, it means you were actually thirsty! And as you know, drinking enough water is also a wonderful way to curb your appetite, flush out toxins and feel fuller. So, always keep a bottle of water handy and keep sipping.

10)  Saying no to all carbs

While a low-carb diet is good, whoever said anything about a no-carb diet?! Certain carbs (read: processed and refined) are bad for your health, but other carb sources like beans, oats, sweet potatoes and such are actually pretty good for you. When you say no to all kinds of carbs, you’re basically depriving yourself of important nutrients such as fibre, apart from other vital vitamins and minerals. In fact, research even shows that not eating carbs at all can cause a spike in stress hormones and set off a chain reaction that causes an increase in belly fat. And we don’t want that, do we?

So, if you seriously want to lose weight, make sure you don’t end up making any of these mistakes! Stick to your diet, keep your dietitian posted at all times and take it one day at a time.

-Sanjana Subramanian

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