Making small, specific goals is the key to long-term weight loss – but how can you become motivated? Check out our favorite, non-wrong jump starts below and find more tips Do it all! Keep it all off!, a smart and effective guide to losing weight. You feel like your old self (ie back in your skinny jeans) as quickly as possible.

1. Build a better breakfast.

All meals are important, but breakfast is what helps you start your day on the right track. The best, heartiest breakfasts are those who will fill you, keep you satisfied and want to avoid your desires later in the day. Strive to eat somewhere between 400 and 500 calories for your morning meal, and make sure you have a source of lean protein plus filler fat (eg eggs, beans, unsweetened Greek yogurt, nuts or nut paste) and fiber (fruit vegetables, or 100% whole grains). By starting your day with a blood sugar-stabilizing mix of nutrients you can lose weight without sacrificing.

yogurt with muesli and fruit

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2. Give priority to real, complete food.

Make sure that everything you eat is whole – as not processed or packaged in anything. Because salt is a preservative, these are the foods with the highest sodium content – something to keep in mind when planning your meals. Make sure that all items you choose are fresh. That means filling up fresh fruit and vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy and lean proteins.

3. Know your boundaries with salt.

When it comes to buying snacks, a "low-sodium" product should be 140 mg or less per serving – so if you are REALLY in control, you can follow that guideline for what you put in your shopping cart.

4. Go for that cup of Joe.

Start your day with a cup of coffee. Caffeine is a natural diuretic and an excellent source of antioxidants that protect your cells from damage. You can get up to 400 mg daily – over a Starbucks coffee with venti – according to the Dietary Guidelines 2015 for Americans. Not really a coffee drinker? Tea is also a natural diuretic and types of herbal tea such as dandelion or fennel root can also help. In fact, when a recent study compares the metabolic effect of green tea (in extract) with that of a placebo, researchers found that green tea drinkers burned about 70 extra calories in a 24-hour period.


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5. Skip sugary drinks.

Simple and clear: we just have do not feels full of liquid calories in the same way as we do really eat. For example, drinking a juice or a caramel coffee drink will not give you the feeling that eating a bowl of vegetarian and protein-packed stir-frying will do. So keep an eye on your intake of juice, soft drinks, sweetened coffee and tea and alcoholic beverages. If you consume these drinks during the day, you have ingested at least 800 extra calories during the night – and you are still hungry. (Incidentally, alcohol can suppress the metabolism of fat, making it harder for you to burn those calories.) Some other ways to skip sugar? Check them here.

It is a one-off investment that you will never regret. This is why: Strength training builds muscle tissue that burns more calories – at work or at rest – 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The more muscle you have, the faster you lose weight. How do you start strength training? Try some push-ups or a few squats or lunges. Use your free weights to easily perform bicep curls or tricep puffs, at home or in the office. Do these exercises three to four times a week, and you will quickly see a rapid improvement in your body.

7. Eat spicy food – seriously!

It can actually help you to cut down on calories. This is because capsaicin, a substance found in jalapeno and cayenne pepper, can (somewhat) increase the release of stress hormones, such as adrenalin, so that you can burn calories faster. In addition, eating hot peppers can slow you down. You will get that plate with spicy spaghetti less quickly in the wash – and therefore better pay attention when you are full. Some great additions: ginger, turmeric, black pepper, oregano and jalapenos.


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8. Go to bed.

No matter how funny it sounds, lack of sleep makes you fat – and not only because you are susceptible to cases of nighttime munchies (although that is true). There is a lot of research that shows that less than the desired amount – about 7 hours of sleep per night – can slow down your metabolism. And if you are awake longer, you obviously have more chance of nothing. So do not skimp on your ZZZ & # 39; s, and you will be rewarded with an added benefit when it comes to getting rid of kilos quickly.

9. Write it down.

Numerous studies show people who log everything they eat – especially those who log in while they eat – are more likely to lose weight and keep it off for the long term. Start by following an app like MyFitnessPal when the kilos start to sneak up. It helps you stay responsible for what you have eaten. Moreover, you can easily identify a number of other areas of your daily diet that could use a little improvement when it is written out for you.

10. Take a walk – or take a walk!

Do not get me wrong – practicing at any time is good for you. But evening activity can be particularly beneficial because the metabolism of many people decreases towards the end of the day. Thirty minutes of aerobic activity before dinner increases your metabolism and can last for two or three hours even after you have stopped moving. What that means for you: you are less inclined to go back for seconds or third. In addition, it helps you to relax after a meal, so you will not be tempted by stress-induced grazing that can speed up calories, fast.


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11. Resist the urge to skip a meal.

Listen: if you skip meals, you will not lose weight faster. If a hectic day makes a sit-down meal impossible, stop an energy bar or a piece of fruit in your car or bag, keep snacks in your desk drawer and get a point of getting up to grab a nosh – all that will prevent you from being hungry! Prolonged food without food duplicates our efforts in the field of healthy eating by slowing both your metabolism and feeding you for another binge later in the day. (Remember: you skipped breakfast and lunch, so you're ready to take a whole turkey at dinner!) Make it your mission to eat three meals and two snacks every day, and wait no longer than three to four hours without food. If necessary, put a "snack alarm" on your phone.

12. Eat your H2O.

Certainly, you must certainly drink plenty of water to speed up the process of removing excess sodium from your body, you can (and should!) Also consume food with a high water content. Reach for cucumbers, tomatoes, watermelon, asparagus, grapes, celery, artichokes, pineapple and cranberries – all diuretic properties that also help you stay full because of their higher fiber content.

13. Munch on mineral-rich foods.

Potassium, magnesium and calcium can help to serve as a counterweight to sodium. Foods rich in potassium include leafy vegetables, most "orange" foods (oranges, sweet potatoes, carrots, melon), bananas, tomatoes and cruciferous vegetables, especially cauliflower. Low-fat dairy plus nuts and seeds can also help you to give a good boost. They have also been linked to a whole range of additional health benefits, such as lowering blood pressure, managing blood sugar levels and reducing the risk of chronic diseases in general.


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14. Ignore the gimmicks.

At any given moment there are dozens of slimming types on the market that rise 10 pounds within ten days, or whatever. Despair can tempt us to try everything – from "clean food" to the complete cutting away of food groups. Keep in mind: just because an avocado-walnut- "crispy" – kale salad that drips from coconut oil is considered "clean" by a so-called "expert" on your Instagram feed, does not make it unrestricted food. The moral of the story? Avoid fads, eat real food, watch Netflix and relax (perhaps with a glass of wine in hand). That's it now my kind of detox.

15. Leave yourself off the hook.

You already know that a perfect diet does not exist, but many of us still can not resist the urge to kick ourselves if we surrender, overeat, or are thrown out of the restrictive diets. The problem: this only makes it harder, more stressful and downright impossible to lose weight. So instead of defeating yourself for eating food, you think must not, let it go. Treat yourself to about 200 calories of delights every day – something that makes you feel comfortable you – can help you stay on the right track for the long distance, so allow yourself to eat, breathe and enjoy. Food must be joyful, not painful!

16. Look for our logo on food labels.

Ultimately, long-term weight loss requires some behavior change in the short term and healthier habit formation. That's why we've developed our Approved Emblem for Good Housekeeping Nutritionist, which exists to turn smart food choices into healthier eating habits. All GHNA foods and drinks make it easier to find good food – and to eat – without extra time, effort and expense. We focus on lifestyle-related factors that make healthier eating easier and find simple but creative solutions that really work! Look for the emblem on labels where you also shop for food!

Jaclyn London, MS, RD, CDN, Good Housekeeping Institute
Director, Nutrition Lab
Doctor Jackie, a registered dietitian with a Bachelor of Arts degree from Northwestern University and a Master of Science in Clinical Nutrition from New York University, provides all nutrition-related content, testing and evaluation of Good Housekeeping.