Getting healthy for summer

It can be tempting, especially as we come into the warmer months, to go for the quick weight loss options to help shed some of that winter weight gain.

However, these “quick fixes” are not sustainable and as soon as you stop them, you’re likely to put the weight you lost back on, plus some. Unfortunately, there is no fast lane to health or fitness, it takes patience and consistency.

The better, more sustainable approach is to focus on 6 key aspects:

Prioritise nutritious foods

Instead of restricting your diet, focus on getting your 5 or more serves of vegetables and 2 serves of fruit every day. Choose whole grains for added fibre. The extra fibre not only increases satiety but also improves your gut microbiome.

Eat enough protein

Aim for a minimum of 1g protein per kg of body weight. If you are doing a high level of exercise, you can increase to around 1.5g per kg of body weight. Protein in every meal and snack helps to keep you fuller for longer, so may help to reduce your need to snack.

Move your body daily

There are so many benefits to moving your body daily other than the effect it can have on weight loss. Daily movement improves your energy, sleep and mood. Find an activity that you enjoy or team up with a buddy to make it easier to commit to daily movement.

Get adequate sleep

When you don’t get enough sleep, the hormone that signals feelings of fullness decreases, so you may over eat. You may also find yourself snacking more in an effort to keep your energy levels up. Aim for 7-9 hours of sleep each night.

Stay hydrated

Your body is about 60% water and every tissue, cell and organ needs water to function properly, so staying hydrated is very important. Aim for 2.5L of water each day, more if you are doing high intensity exercise. If you aren’t sure you’re drinking enough, check the colour of your pee! It should be a very pale yellow.

Manage stress levels

Stress is an inevitable part of life, but that doesn’t mean it should take over your life. When chronic stress isn’t managed, your risk of developing depression, digestive problems, weight gain, high blood pressure, and heart disease increase. All of the above steps can help with stress management, as can gratitude journals, yoga, and taking time for your hobbies. However if you are still struggling, please reach out for professional help.

Blog written for Realign Health.