The Skinny on Weight Loss

The ultimate secret to weight loss is…wait for it…there is none! Instead, it’s a result of consistently following various habits and tips.  Different magazines/dieticians will have their own views on what causes weight loss and overall good health.  Whilst they may sometimes be contradictory, that’s not to say one trumps the other.  Ultimately weight loss is about finding what works for you and sticking to it. Therefore, I’m going to regularly add a daily tip for weight loss which I have been successful with in the past.  Please feel free to   add any bits you may have- what may seem like common sense to you could actually be a huge revelation to others so list away…

A TIP A DAY TO KEEP THE WEIGHT AWAY 🙂

1)  Plan, plan, plan!

Fail to plan and you’re planning to fail.  Planning ahead is one of the most powerful tools to combat impulse eating.  Whether it means planning your meals ahead of time so you aren’t tempted to divert from your good intentions, choosing a restaurant which won’t throw you off track, or planning your day to ensure you have time to work out, you really need to take these kinds of decisive steps towards meeting your weight loss goals.  

While it may seem anal initially, structured eating habits and exercise routines will make it easier to stick to your weight loss programme. Every handbag of mine contains a cereal bar as Justin might show up- JustIn Case…just in case I get hungry or just in case I feel like something sweet.  I also almost always eat a snack such as a bowl of soup or some fruit with yogurt before going for a meal out.  That way I’m not starving when I reach the restaurant so even if the choices on offer aren’t the healthiest, I won’t need to eat the whole portion to get full.

2)  Bland food is a poor man’s food

Eating bland foods is boring, unsatisfying, and if that is what your diet consists of, good luck sticking to it.  Instead, by eating foods that appeal to your taste buds, you’ll find it easier to stick to your plan.  The key is to find sauces and spices which enhance the flavor of your food while not overly adding to the food’s overall calorie count or damaging its overall nutritional content.  Some sauces which I love, and frequently use, include:

  • Reduced salt soy sauce
  • Mustard
  • Ketchup
  • Tabasco
  • Bbq glaze
  • Teriyaki glaze
  • Salsa
  • Reduced fat hummus
  • Low fat cottage cheese
  • Maggie sweet chili sauce
  • Japanese sesame dressing (preferably the “18 kcal per serving” version)
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Tinned tomatoes
  • Cajun spice 

Once you have a good variety of flavors, you will more than likely look forward to what you’re eating and actually enjoy it.  However, be sure to check that your choice of sauce is not oil-based or cream-based such as hollandaise sauce or mayonnaise.

3)  Write what you bite…to double your weight loss!

Apparently sandwiches aren’t the only BLT’s which could hinder weight loss.  Although often overlooked, various Bites, Licks, and Tastes throughout the day all add up.   It’s so easy to conveniently only remember the numerous cups of green tea and healthy meals that we have each day.  Despite such efforts, we see the same number on the scale each week. While we’d like to blame this on hormones or some other uncontrollable factor, this is rarely the case.  Instead, by writing down all that you consume throughout the day, you will be able to assess where the hidden calories are coming from.  Although the odd Mars bar or spring roll doesn’t hurt, you might be surprised to realize that this ‘odd’ habit has become more regular over time.

In addition to preventing mindless eating, having a food diary will make you feel more in control and accountable to yourself.  If you keep an honest log, you will probably feel discouraged from sneaking fattening bites and making choices which do not correspond to your eating plan.      

Although this may seem tedious, surely the satisfaction of making positive steps towards meeting your weight loss goals outweighs it?

P.s. don’t forget to write down that bite of cheesecake you’re about to devour 😉

4)  Step off those scales…now!!

Because WeightWatchers was a weekly occurrence, I firmly believe in weighing in once a week.  Although it can be extremely tempting to hop on them every time you visit the loo (and if you are anything like me, this is several times a day), try not to!  Due to various factors such as fluctuations in our fluid levels, hormones, and lactic acid threshold, our body weight changes constantly.

Despite these natural bodily fluctuations, false figures on the scales could throw us off our plan- the same way a huge loss could encourage you to eat an extra chocolate because ‘you’re doing so well’, a potential gain may convince you that your plan is not producing results.  Try weighing in after a Chinese meal.or after a heavy exercise session…it’s physically impossible to gain 2 lbs of FAT so quickly. 

Therefore like every other weight loss tip, consistency is key- weigh yourself once a week…preferably on the same day, around the same time and if you are in the comfort of your own home- commando 😉

5) Stop eating when you are full

Easier said than done eh?  As delicious as any meal is, it’s not your last supper so once you’re full, why eat like it’s going out of fashion? And in case you’re using the ‘starving kids in Africa’ excuse..yes they might be starving but you piling on the pounds sure isn’t going to help them.

6)  Go Green…and I’m not referring to the environment!

Over the last few months, green tea has become one drink I swear by.  In terms of weight loss, I don’t think that drinking it is enough to help you automatically lose weight.  However there is evidence that drinking it helps suppress your appetite and also boosts your metabolism.   I tend to drink between 7-8 cups a day and it definetely helps with not eating ‘crap’ throughout the day.  While it is high in caffeine, I personally feel that its antioxidant content outweighs this.   And if you’re still not convinced…think about the Japanese- how often do you come across a chubby one?

7) Introduce intervals

Interval training is probably the crème de la crème of exercise.  It is my favourite form of working out and fortunately it really helps with fat-burning.  By mixing short spurts of high intensity with recovery periods of moderate intensity, you can maximise your fat-burning capacity as well as your time spent working out.  For example, I’ll sometimes run at 12.5 km/h for 3 minutes and then bring the speed back down to 9 km/h for a further 2 minutes (I repeat this for 5-6 kilometers).  Also because I’m now living in Mumbai, I have no choice but to work out on the machines at the gym (how I miss my runs in Hyde Park!).  By regularly doing interval training, I can stay on each machine for at least 40 minutes without monotony kicking in.  Other ways of incorporating this kind of training include:

  • Walking for 3 minutes and then breaking into a jog for 2 minutes
  • Walking on incline gradient 2 for 3 minutes and then hiking the incline up to gradient 8 for 2 minutes
  • Going at a normal pace on the stationary bike/cross-trainer but then every so often push yourself at full throttle for 1 or 2 minutes

 8) Draw a line

If you’ve slightly strayed from your plan, there is no need to give up entirely.  Just move on and continue as normal.  Nobody’s perfect and without a few treats every now and then, life would be boring and unrealistic.  Instead, have a sensible approach to it: eat healthily 80% of time and allow yourself ‘treats’ 20% of the time.  Put it this way- as there are 21 meals in one week, is 1-2 desserts/pizza-based meals per week really going to make that big of an impact? Like the opposite sex, it’s good to keep your metabolism on its toes 😉

{ 25 comments… read them below or add one }

Ayesha Grover April 6, 2010 at 9:52 pm

hahahaha im really thankful for JUSTIN. Because of him, you always have fun movie snacks for me in your handbag 🙂

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Hansa April 7, 2010 at 3:59 am

Loving the daily tips, especially justin…….case.

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Gopika August 20, 2011 at 1:41 am

Khushboo, could you suggest some good JUSTINs please? 🙂 I live in Houston.

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Khushboo Thadani August 20, 2011 at 12:32 pm

Hi! I envy you for living in Houston as that only means one thing: access to WholeFoods :)!. Some of my “JUSTINs” include:
-ziplock with almonds & raisins
-granola
-Larabars (or the UK equivalent nak’d bars)
-Cliff Z Bars
-Luna Bars
-apple

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Z @ kickingkilos February 15, 2013 at 5:40 pm

Hi there, thanks for the tips. I’m stuck now and it can get sooo depressing!
I have a question, did you do anything else besides the treadmill?

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Khushboo February 16, 2013 at 11:24 am

Initially I used to do the treadmill & cycle! Although if I could go back and change things, I would have incorporated weight training from earlier on :)!

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Z @ kickingkilos February 16, 2013 at 3:06 pm

Thanks Khusboo. I have another one of those Q’s(THANKS)
My weightloss is at a turtles pace, what do you think I could do to speed it up?

I have never done ST as such, what are the ones that you do?
🙂

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Khushboo February 17, 2013 at 10:54 am

So long as you’re losing 1-2 lbs a week, you’re on the right track to a safe & effective weight loss :)!

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Rishabh July 5, 2013 at 12:19 pm

Hey khusboo! I am overweight, i heard that drinking lots of water also helps! Do u think it’s true? And also someone told me that milk can also help cut fat.
I am doing a lot of walking , but also eating very well. I also eat when i feel a little low! Btw did u hear of acai diet? I’m going to try it soon, hope it wotks! Fingers crossed!

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Khushboo July 5, 2013 at 1:29 pm

Hi Rishabh! Water plays a huge role in weight loss. Without enough water, your kidneys can’t function properly and needs help from the liver. If the liver is helping out the kidneys, it can’t perform its primary function optimally: burning fat!

Never heard of the acai diet. For consistent weight loss, focus on eating a well-balanced diet, keeping your calories in check and staying active. Best of luck!

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Jill October 16, 2014 at 1:18 pm

Thanks for the weight loss tips! I’ll keep you updated!

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James Walter December 15, 2014 at 6:29 pm

Nicely written!Yes it’s 100% true that there is no magic formula to reduce body weight in a very short time unless you go for a surgery which you know never proved be good for health in the long run.so only a well planned diet course a simple regular based exercises surely could reduce body fat.it’ll take time but it’s the best thing to lose extra body weight.

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Khushboo December 16, 2014 at 10:51 am

Thanks James!

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Priya Sharma April 6, 2015 at 2:47 pm

Hey, I followed some tips from your blog and that really helped me. Looking forward for more posts like these.

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Priya Sharma April 6, 2015 at 2:50 pm

I followed some of your tips and they really helped me. Looking forward for your next post.

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Jarilove May 13, 2015 at 1:57 pm

Fantastic way to reducing the weight loss tips.

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john bell May 29, 2015 at 5:45 pm

I drink a lots of water and avoid the junk and oily foods but it only controls the increasing weight, then I have tried natural weight loss supplement and then I realize this is the best and quick ways to reduce overweight. I always feel fresh and charming when I have started to use weight loss supplement.

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Khushboo June 1, 2015 at 3:50 am

I have to disagree- I think food is much more effective than any supplement when it come to long-lasting weight loss!

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Dieticia Prerna February 21, 2016 at 4:21 pm

Nice one…

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Nirmala March 8, 2016 at 4:01 pm

Hi, Good one. Thanks for your tips.

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Khushboo March 18, 2016 at 10:19 am

Thanks Nirmala!

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Tilda October 5, 2016 at 2:35 pm

Thanks for your great tips. I avoid to eat junk foods and drink lots water and also do yoga every day.

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Khushboo October 23, 2016 at 7:17 pm

Sounds perfect Tilda!!

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Sally Joseph November 16, 2016 at 2:30 pm

Thanks for sharing with us that awesome article you have amazing blog………

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Raag June 8, 2017 at 12:50 pm

Why no mention of Indian spices which you can eat ???

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