Slimming your waistline doesn’t have to be hard work; you can trim a few pounds with some simple changes that take no time or effort.
By now most of us know that losing weight isn’t just a question of looking and feeling your best. The obesity epidemic affects nearly 2 billion adults around the world, and in many countries it is deadlier than malnutrition (source).
Of course everyone knows that the most straightforward way to lose weight is to reduce calorie intake and increase physical activity. While that sounds simple, it can be difficult to actually take these steps when living a modern busy lifestyle, and it is difficult to change lifelong habits. So here are some simple ways to lose weight that don’t require time, effort, or dramatic lifestyle changes.
Swap animal-derived fats for plant-derived fats
While there is years of talk about trans-fats, saturated fats, and other unhealthy fats, it turns out that what matters most is not what kind of fat it is, but where it comes from. Simply swapping butter, lard, and animal fats for plant-based fats like olive oil, avocado oil, or coconut oil is a great way to reduce calories and make your meals heart-healthier. Plant-based fats that come from nuts, seeds, and plants are rich in Omega acids and other important micronutrients that benefit the body. In fact, according to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, a diet rich in plant-based fats is associated with a 16% reduced risk of dying from any cause (source).
Swap soda, juice, and other beverages for water or tea
We require water to survive, and drinking water also improves the appearance of the skin and hair. Swapping sweetened or caloric beverages for water is an easy way to reduce calories every day, but studies show that simply increased water intake alone (regardless of swapping for other beverages) is associated with reduced obesity (source). Even if you add sweetener to your tea, you won’t be adding as much sugars as manufacturers add to soda and juice. Even better, use honey or agave as sweeteners instead of refined sugars, for healthier sweetened beverages.
Reduce meat consumption
You don’t need to become a vegetarian, but reducing the amount of meat in your diet is better for your body, your waistline, and the environment. Today, there are many popular non-meat products available in your grocery store, so you can skip meat a few days a week without significantly changing your diet. You can even reduce meat intake by blending ground or minced meat with mushrooms or other plant products, to lower the amount of meat in your diet without modifying your cooking methods or recipes.
Embrace the cold
It may sound silly, but your body burns calories every minute of every day in order to maintain your body temperature. Lowering your thermostat, drinking cold water instead of room temperature, and sleeping with lighter blankets on the bed can all make your body burn a few more calories every hour to keep you warm. In fact, one study showed that sleeping in the cold not only burned fat, but improved metabolism (source). Lowering your thermostat not only trims your waistline, but it may also save you some money on utility bills.
These are just some of the ways that you can burn more calories, lose weight, and improve your health without changing your lifestyle, spending more money, or making time for the gym. Small changes can add up over time, helping you look and feel better than ever before.