Losing weight is an uphill task for many people because it involves fighting your instincts on so many different fronts. To lose weight effectively, you need to focus on your diet, exercise routine, lifestyle, drinking habits, hormone levels, sleep patterns… the list goes on. But here’s a simple hack to make sure you’re on the right track. By eating the right things at the right time, you can make use of your body’s natural metabolism to help you lose weight.
Never Skip Your Breakfast
Since you were a kid, your mom has probably been yelling at you to not skip breakfast. She wasn’t wrong and now we have research to prove it. The American Heart Association journal Circulation, Harvard School of Public Health researchers studied the health outcomes of 26,902 male health professionals ages 45 to 82 over a 16-year period. They found that the men who skipped breakfast had a 27% higher risk of heart attack or death from heart disease than those who ate their morning meal.
Scientists say that skipping breakfast may make you hungrier and more likely to eat larger meals, which leads to a surge in blood sugar. Such spikes can pave the way for diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol levels, all risk factors that can snowball into a heart attack.
What You Eat Also Matters
And it’s not just about eating; it’s also about what you eat for breakfast. Your breakfast sets your blood-sugar pattern for the rest of the day. If you eat something that is whole grain and has some fat and protein in it, your blood sugar is going to rise slowly and go down slowly.
However, if you eat something refined, like an overly sweet cinnamon roll, that’s the worst thing you get an insulin spike, and your blood sugar drops too low so you get hungry again. That’s why many people get into a cycle of overeating junk.
Here are some healthy breakfast options:
Whole wheat toast with almond butter
Omelet with spinach and avocado
Breads made with sprouted/stoneground grains
Baked sweet potato with cinnamon and a little butter
The Afternoon Meal
Everyone is familiar with the adage ‘Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper.’ It was actually popularized in the 1960s by nutritionist Adelle Davis. And it does hold true. If you have to have a heavy meal, having it earlier in the day makes sense because that’s when your body needs the most calories for energy. In many European countries, the largest meal of the day occurs in the afternoon. However, if you want to have a modest lunch and bigger meal later, just make sure it’s not high on calories. Load up on salads and veggies that fill you up.
What You Should Eat In The Evening
If you’re wondering why everyone’s asking you to eat a light supper, here’s the spiel. Theoretically, it’s all right to eat late in the evening because calories get burned up no matter when you eat them. Not all of them though. When you eat a heavy dinner, you’re not as likely to get rid of those calories before you turn in. It’s more likely that they will be stored as fat, as you become less active toward the end of the day.
Another reason to eat light and early is to get a good night’s sleep. Eating too close to bedtime increases your blood sugar and insulin, which causes you to have a hard time falling asleep. Midnight snacks are worse. Gorging on ice creams and leftover cake in the middle of the night can lower levels of the hormone melatonin which is supposed to help you feel tired and relaxed.
If you want to lose weight, then food is where you need to start. Having the right food at the right time is not as difficult as it looks once you get used to it. It’s all about being a little more logical and a little less impulsive when it comes to food.