Just a few super foods to take note of:
**Tofu is a good source of leucine which is a friendly protein that helps you stay thin. This amino acid is linked to maintaining muscle mass and reducing body fat during weight loss.
**Green Tea has caffeine and plant nutrients that might help raise your metabolic rate by up to 3.5 percent. Green tea is shown to potentially give you an increased metabolism, a positive effect on blood sugar and insulin regulation, and possibly the inhibiting of certain enzymes which are required for the processing of carbohydrates and fats. I love green tea and usually drink 4 or more glasses daily.
**Lean Meats are rich in protein, which takes more energy to digest than carbs or fats. Protein makes you feel satisfied too. I have been trying to stick to chicken and fish, but I also had some boneless pork chops the other day.
**Whole Grain Cereal is a great start to the day because these high fiber cereals are very filling and can actually help to stabilize blood sugar while providing heart healthy benefits. Choose healthy options such as Total, Smart Start Healthy Heart, or Kashi Heart to Heart Oat Flakes & Wild Blueberry Clusters. Add the cereal to yogurt for a parfait or add dried fruit for an on the go trail mix.
**Coffee and the caffeine that is in it can speed up your metabolism and make it easier for you to burn calories. It also gives you energy which will help you be more active. I'm not a fan of coffee, but tea is a good alternative.
**Low-Fat Dairy is packed with protein and helps build muscle and banish fat. I usually try to drink at least one glass of milk and have a cheese with my apple every day.
**Nuts are packed with both protein and fiber. I love nuts and I love the fact that they are so good for you. My favorites are macadamia and pecans.
As for exercise: Apparently alternating speeds during cardio is the best way to achieve optimal calorie burning. I have been seeing that everywhere lately, and it's funny but I actually like to do that because otherwise I get a little bored.
Offer yourself rewards for exercise such as a healthy but yummy snack. (Sugar Free Pudding and Pretzels is one of my favorites.) A pedicure or manicure for working out at least 3 times a week. Another great incentive that I've heard is where you earn a dollar for each mile you walk or run and at the end of the month you can buy yourself something nice. Even housework such as vacuuming and cleaning can be considered exercise.
Put it all together:
• Have soup or a salad for lunch to cut back on calories and stay full longer.
• Drink green tea instead of soda. Green tea has caffeine and other nutrients that promote weight loss while still providing an energy pick me up.
• Snack on nuts. True, nuts are high in calories, but the fat is heart-healthy monounsaturated fat that helps with weight loss. Add them to salads or yogurt to for a well balanced meal or snack.
• Don't eat while reading, watching TV, driving or engaging in other activities. Sit down at the table and concentrate on chewing slowly, and pay attention to flavors and textures.
*Work in some type of exercise or activity each day. Whether it is a walk to the mailbox or a housework, at least you are moving.
If you have any other tips, I would love to hear them.
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