Herbfacts
Woman wearing black dress with arm raised in triumph at her weight loss

Weight loss: top tips to help you manage your weight

The party season is just weeks away, and if weight loss is your goal and you’re worried you won’t fit into last year’s little black number don’t despair.

There is still time to drop a few pounds and tone up without resorting to drastic measures, says medical herbalist Gabriella Clarke.

PLAN MEALS IN ADVANCE

You will be less likely to make unhealthy food choices and go for instant fixes if you plan your meals in advance. Prepare lunches and healthy snacks to take to work the evening before. Alternatively, leftovers can make delicious and healthy lunches as well as saving you money.

USE SMALLER PLATES

This simple tip tricks your mind into thinking you have eaten more than you actually have and stops you over eating.

FIBRE UP

Eat plenty of fibre to help keep you feeling fuller for longer.

EAT REGULARLY

Leaving long gaps between meals can cause a drop in blood sugar, which can have you reaching for the biscuit tin. So make sure to eat regularly to keep your energy levels and blood sugars balanced.

AVOID CRASH DIETS

Don’t be tempted to go on diets that are too restrictive, especially ones that cut out macronutrients such as fats or carbohydrates. Your body needs them to function and avoiding them can be harmful. Very high protein diets, which include protein shakes and bars, can also be bad as excess protein can strain the kidneys and even lead to kidney stones.

Maintain a well-balanced diet, containing plenty of fruits and vegetables, protein, wholegrain carbohydrates and healthy fats.

GET MOVING

The more calories you burn the quicker you will loose those excess pounds. Doing some resistance work can aid weight loss by helping to build muscle and keep you toned. Increased muscle density will lead to the body burning more calories, which increases your basal metabolic rate (BMR) – the amount of calories burnt by the body in its resting state.

DRINK UP

If hunger strikes have a glass of water, as your brain can’t always differentiate between hunger and thirst. If you are still hungry half an hour after drinking you probably do need to eat.

LOOK AFTER YOUR DIGESTION

If bloating is a problem try taking probiotics. Artichoke supplements also promote good digestive health by encouraging the colonisation of good bacteria and increasing gut transit time.

HAVE A CUPPA

Weight gain can be caused by fluid retention, especially around the time of your period. To combat this, try sipping nettle tea, which has natural diuretic properties.