How to Lose Weight Easily
Less really is more. Forget the drastic eating regimes (like only eating grapefruit) and obsessive calorie counting. Instead, just making tiny tweaks to your diet can make a big difference in terms of your weight loss.
From reducing the amount of sugar you put in your tea to peeling the skin off cooked chicken, you could be losing weight and saving yourself a heart attack by making just a few minor adjustments.
Dieticians warn that we need to transform our eating habits, with about a quarter of the population classed as obese -- so fat, their health is in danger.
The research by teams at Oxford and Liverpool universities compared dietary patterns against deaths from heart disease in Britons aged 25 to 84.
They then calculated the impact of lower cholesterol and blood pressure among the population caused by small adjustments to our diets.
Here we reveal how easy it is to make a difference.
- Stick to one full-fat biscuit rather than two or three low-fat versions. One low-fat biscuit can contain as much as 50 percent more sugar than a normal biscuit. And sugar, if not burned off through exercise, will be stored as fat.
- Steer clear of products with the words "hydrogenated fat" in the ingredients list. Major culprits include cakes, biscuits and pastries. Studies show that eating even small amounts of trans-fats, or unsaturated fat, increases your risk of heart disease more than consuming any other foods. By replacing just 2 percent of your intake from trans-fats with different fats you can more than halve your risk.
- Cut back on salt. One shake of the salt shaker delivers about half a gram of salt. So if you shake once less at every evening meal, you'll save three grammes a week. Research shows that dropping your salt intake by as much as three grams a day would be enough to trigger a measurable fall in blood pressure, reducing your risk of stroke by 13 percent and heart disease by 10 percent.
- Rethink your dinner plate. Instead of filling up with carbohydrates like pasta, rice, potatoes, and meat, fill half the plate with salad or veg, then split the remaining half between carbohydrates and meat. Halving the quantity of rice can cut calorie intake by 200. Do this once a day and within two weeks you'll have cut out enough calories -- nearly 3000 -- to lose a pound of body fat.
- Take the skin off chicken before you eat it and drop four grams of fat. And choosing a pack of lean bacon instead of streaky means taking in 10 grams less fat with every two rashers.
- Ditch fizzy drinks for water and you'll reduce your sugar intake massively. A can of cola contains eight teaspoons of sugar. Because liquid sugar in these drinks is delivered so quickly into your system, sugary drinks can increase your risk of insulin resistance -- where the body is not able to effectively metabolize sugar -- which in turn increases your risk of developing diabetes.
- Snack healthfully. There are 622 calories in a 100g fistful of peanuts. Choose bombay mix, with 150 calories a handful, or fat-free Japanese rice mix, with 120 calories.
- Squirt less ketchup on to your plate. Each serving contains one to two teaspoons of hidden sugar (up to 10 grams). Try to halve your intake of this unnecessary sugar.
- Never grab breakfast on the run. A whole-milk latte could notch up 265 calories and almost 14 grammes of fat and a croissant adds 400 calories and 20 grammes of fat. Make your own breakfast -- two slices of toast and a cup of tea don't even hit 200 calories.
- Pad out your meals with vegetables. By adding one more serving of vegetables a day, you could reduce your risk of breast cancer by 21 percent, while one serving of fruit of day reduces the risk by 17 percent.
- Have one less chocolate when the box is passed round and save about 40 calories. Six chocolates are equivalent to one full bar.
- Reduce sugar in your tea or coffee. Have one teaspoon rather than two and you could save yourself up to 30 grams of sugar a day, if you drink six cups daily. At 15 calories per teaspoon, that's a cut of an amazing 32,000 calories a year.
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