Five unexpected things that can help you lose weight
Think cake and beer are off the menu when you’re dieting? The good news is this may not be the case. Check out these 5 surprising things that can keep you slim.
Surprise 1: Chocolate
It may not be the first food choice that springs to mind when embarking on a diet, but research findings suggest that eating chocolate in moderation could actually make you slim. The study conducted by the University of California tested the theory that, as chocolate is believed to increase your metabolism, these benefits may cancel out the calories consumed. The results suggested that chocolate may not only be calorie neutral; it can also help you lose weight. The researchers discovered that adults who consumed chocolate frequently had a lower BMI than those who didn’t, despite them often eating more calories and not exercising more.
Surprise 2: Fried food and cakes for breakfast
If you’re experiencing cravings for dessert or fried foods, the good news is you can indulge – so long as you do it first thing. Researchers from Tel Aviv University found that participants who ate a 600-calorie breakfast which included dessert lost an average of 40lbs more than those who had a smaller 300-calorie one. Meanwhile, researchers from the University of Alabama found that eating a fried breakfast followed by a lighter lunch and evening meal could help with weight loss. Experts believe that this is because the body’s metabolism is faster in the morning, making it the best time to indulge. Furthermore, giving into cravings first thing can help banish them for the rest of the day.
Surprise 3: Beer
According to The Campaign for Real Ale (Camra), one third of people believe that beer has more calories than other alcoholic drinks. However, this is actually a myth, and research by Camra has found that swapping wine or alcopops for beer could in fact help you lose weight. While taking up a drinking habit will clearly do your waistline no favours, the study suggests that making the switch to beer could help keep regular drinkers trim. In fact, Camra’s research findings show that swapping wine for beer for just one week could save as many calories as you would burn in a half-hour jog.
Surpise 4: Fatty foods
We’ve all heard that fatty foods are bad for us, but the truth is this all depends on the kind of fats you eat. Foods rich in good fats such as omega-3 fatty acids can not only boost your health, they can also help you lose weight. Studies suggest that omega-3 fatty acids can increase feelings of satiety and fullness, helping you to eat less. Furthermore, a study by the University of South Australia found that participants who took omega-3 rich fish oil and exercised three times a week lost more weight than those who exercised alone. It is believed that this is because omega-3 improves blood flow to muscles, increasing the benefits of exercise and helping you to burn off more calories.
Surpise 5: Eating more frequently
You may think that skipping meals will keep you slim, but eating more frequently could in fact help keep off the pounds. While eating too much food can cause you to gain weight, eating too little can also make it surprisingly difficult to shed those pounds. As your body has a natural instinct to protect itself, it will automatically go into starvation mode if not given enough fuel, causing the metabolism to slow down and the body to hoard fat and calories. Rather than skipping meals or lowering your calorie intake too drastically, opt for regular small and healthy meals alongside regular exercise.
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