Sustainable weight loss doesn't happen overnight (and if it does, it's probably self-destructive). But if you're anxious to lose weight for a legit reason, follow these painless tips to improve your diet, streamline your workouts, and shed weight *the healthy way*.
1. Pregame for meals with water. Drinking water throughout the day and during your mealspromotes proper digestion so you don't get backed up and bloated. But some research suggests downing two glasses of water glasses before meals can make you feel fuller when you take that first forkful, leading you to eat less overall.
2. Eat breakfast. Skipping breakfast tricks your body into thinking it is starving — and it is (at least since last night!). In response, your body conserves energy by slowing down your metabolism and increasing its insulin response, according to to clinical psychologist Joseph Luciani, Ph.D., author of Thin from Within. The next thing you eat will spike your blood sugar big-time and leave you feeling hungry shortly after. Meanwhile, you work up a major appetite that causes you to scarf down food impulsively — bad news if you're trying to make smarter decisions.
Even if you aren't hungry-hungry at the ass crack of dawn, registered dietitian Holley Graingerrecommends eating at least a little protein and fiber, like overnight oatmeal, a yogurt parfait, avocado toast with a scrambled egg, a green smoothie, or even last night's leftovers.
3. Don't make dinner your heaviest meal. Research suggests that people who eat their largest meals later in the day lose less weight than people who eat their heaviest meals early on, mostly because the body digests food differently at different times — and more slowly at night, according to Luciani.
4. Focus on eating more fruits and vegetables instead of eating fewer carbs or less fat. You'll fill up on the nutrients you need to function and fiber to keep you full, so you'll feel satisfied instead of sorely deprived by a bunch of restrictive rules, according to registered dietitianHolley Grainger.
5. Take a break from soda and other sugar-sweetened drinks. Of course water and unsweetened tea doesn't hit the same spot as a Coke or Frappuccino, but getting rid of liquid sugar in your diet is the only way to drastically reduce your caloric intake without changing a single thing you eat — a pretty good deal when you think about it!

6. Eat fruit for dessert. No one said your sweet tooth has to suffer when you clean up your diet — but you'll fill up faster and stay that way longer if you punctuate your meals with fiber-rich fruit.
Grainger stands by frozen grapes or mashed frozen bananas as a stand-in for straight-up ice cream without the classic dessert's extra fat and added sugars. Or you could always microwave a cored apple with a sprinkle of cinnamon to make the fruit taste less like, "You call this dessert?!" and more like pie.

7. Phase out salty snacks. Instead of pretzels and chips, which promote water retention that puffs you up, snack on carrot sticks or hydrating cucumbers dipped in hummus or guacamole, Grainger suggests — you'll feel more full and less bloated.
8. Avoid sugar-free gum, bubbly drinks, beans, and other salty, gassy foods. Stick with water, fresh fruits and vegetables, unsalted nuts, and lean protein, and you'll feel energized without residual bloating, Grainger promises.
9. When you eat, slowwww downnnnn — and nix distractions. "It takes time for the food in your stomach to tell your brain that you're no longer hungry," explains LucianiTo help your brain register fullness and prevent the overeating that makes you feel not-so-hot, set a 15-minute phone timer before you take your first bite, then focus on the food in front of you, not the deliciousness cropping up in your Instagram feed, whatever show is on TV, or the snap you just received. If you're feeling like going for seconds, wait until the buzzer goes off to ask yourself whether you're actually still hungry, and dig in only when the answer sounds a little bit like, "YAS!"
10. Focus on high-intensity workouts. When you alternate between periods of high-intensity exercises (like burpees, squat jumps, or straight-up sprints) and short recovery periods, you burn body fat more efficiently during and after the actual workout session, according to certified personal trainer Adam Rosante.



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