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Tags: winter | pounds | HungerShield | diet | weight

8 Ways to Shed Winter Weight

By    |   Sunday, 06 April 2014 07:49 PM EDT

Spring is officially here, and even though pockets of snow still blanket parts of the United States, we'll soon be ditching winter coats and sweaters and donning summer shorts and swimsuits. Many of us have gained a few pounds over winter and want to shed them before venturing out in skimpier attire.
"Surveys show an average winter weight gain of five to seven pounds," says nutritionist Elizabeth DeRobertis. Unfortunately, most people tend not to lose the extra weight, and it continues to pile on, year after year. "People tend to put on a few pounds during the holidays, and a few over the course of the winter months," she tells Newsmax Health. "What happens is that they don't take it off, so each year their weight gradually climbs higher."

Most people get discouraged in their weight loss efforts before they even get started, often because they choose weight loss problems that are too difficult. "People set themselves up to try something that is too extreme," says DeRobertis. "They have a hard time staying on track because they rely on willpower instead of making an effective plan. They go too long without eating, and then they end up starving, which results in overeating. Before they know it, summer is here, and they are thrown off by backyard barbeques, parties, and other gatherings."

Special: These Are the Deadliest Foods in America. Read This List.

Weight loss doesn't have to be complicated, though, and you don't have to constantly feel deprived. Try DeRobertis' easy ways to shed winter weight:

1. Weigh only once a week. "While many diets suggest keeping detailed records of what you eat and how much you weigh on a daily basis, perhaps even with graphs and charts tracking your progress, such an obsessive approach can in fact be detrimental to your weight loss goals," she says. Weighing weekly eliminates small variances from day to day, such as water retention, and true weight change patterns emerge.
2. "Destroy" your plate. Once you realize you've eaten enough, do something to your plate to make the food unappealing, like pour salt or pepper or place a napkin on the leftovers. "It sounds strange, but if you eat three quarters of the food on your plate and then cover the rest with a napkin, you are less likely to continue eating," says DeRobertis.
3. Choose the right plate color and size. "Blue plates have been shown to decrease appetite, while the opposite holds true for red and gold plates," she says. You'll also tend to eat less if you use smaller plates, such as salad plates, instead of full-size dinner plates. Contrast between the plate and food matters, too. "When you put food on a plate with a large contrast in color, the portion tends to look bigger so people dish up smaller servings," says DeRobertis. If a food is the same color as the plate, you're more likely to serve up a larger portion.
4. Drink water before each meal. "Before indulging in your next meal, drink two 8 ounce glasses of water," says DeRobertis. Continue to drink water throughout the day. Studies show that people who drink generous amounts of water while dieting lose more weight than people who don't. "Water makes your stomach feel fuller, suppressing your hunger as well as your overall caloric intake."
5. Take your time eating.  People who eat too quickly often overeat, says DeRobertis, because their brains haven't had time to realize they're full. "It takes at least twenty minutes for the brain to process that your stomach is full, which is why eating your meals slowly is a crucial component in the weight loss process," says DeRobertis.  "Studies show that the more people chew their food, the lower their weight. In a recent study, those at an ideal weight chewed their food almost 40 times before swallowing, while those at a higher weight chewed less than 10 times before swallowing. "Chew more, lose more!"
6. Embrace the "little things." Little things can make a big difference, says DeRobertis. "Stay active by cutting shortcuts out of your life. Take the stairs, not the elevator or escalator. Get off the subway one or two stops early and walk a little extra. Run around and play with your dog. Make yourself get up and walk around the office, or better yet, walk around the block.
7. Choose the whole version of foods, and opt for foods with less added sugar. Choosing lean proteins with lots of vegetables is a great way to have larger portions with fewer calories. Opt for snacks without added sugar, including fruits, vegetables, nonfat Greek yogurt, and low-fat string cheese. Consider adding HungerShield, a product DeRobertis co-founded, to your weight loss arsenal. HungerShield is an all-natural appetite control drink mix that can be mixed with water to achieve a feeling of fullness by providing a unique blend of fiber, protein, and probiotics with minimal calories.
8. Understand the new U.S. Department of Agriculture's My Plate. The food pyramid has been replaced with My Plate. Like a pie chart, it shows daily portion size suggestions for meals and snacks. For example, grain and vegetables should each be about 25 percent of your daily calories, and protein should be only 15 to 20 percent. "Establishing healthy habits around the right balance of foods at meals and snacks is critical for long term success in shedding and keeping off weight," says DeRobertis.
Consistency is the key to losing weight and keeping it off, says DeRobertis. "If you start reducing calories today and find a way to burn more calories — even as simple as walking a few times a week as the weather gets nicer — this consistency can help you to reverse winter weight gain and feel great by the summer."
Special: These Are the Deadliest Foods in America. Read This List.

© 2023 NewsmaxHealth. All rights reserved.

Spring is officially here, and even though pockets of snow still blanket parts of the United States, we'll soon be ditching winter coats and sweaters and donning summer shorts and swimsuits. Many of us have gained a few pounds over winter and want to shed them before...
Sunday, 06 April 2014 07:49 PM
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