The warmer weather usually creates a flurry of activity for most people to ensure that they are looking their best in their bikinis and boardies. Given that Summer is just around the corner, I thought I would share my top 5 tips to help ‘shed the winter coat’ and get swimwear ready.
- Eat whole unprocessed foods. Look at where hidden sugars and toxic oils might be getting into the system through refined convenience foods. Is it a daily muesli or protein bar or your breakfast cereal? Is it a takeaway lunch every day or is it more obvious like the post-dinner chocolate that has crept into most nights? Eliminating these foods can significantly improve metabolic function resulting in weight loss.
- Manage the stress. Did you know that the biggest cause of unwanted belly fat is high cortisol? Even if you’re eating all the right things it will be hard to lose the spare tyre if you’re not allowing for adequate rest and relaxation. Everyday life is, unfortunately, the primary culprit when it comes to excess production of cortisol. The solution? Meditation, Yoga, Tai Chi or any other modality that allows the nervous system to calm down. 5-10 minutes per day can be profound, meditate your way to a flat belly!
- Heal the gut. I’ve worked with literally hundreds of people over the years helping them lose 100s of kilos in total and at the root of every client’s health issues is gut health. A healthy and functioning digestive system is essential for health and also fat loss. Food intolerances and dysbiosis (gut bacteria imbalances) will often result in an inability to shift those unwanted kilograms and stubborn body fat.
- Eat the fat, not the carbs. Many people I see are still fat-phobic, even if they’re not opting for the low-fat option anymore (never ever choose the low-fat option, it’s loaded with toxins and sugar). Eating more fat is satiating, meaning you will be less inclined to reach for sugary foods. The body will always preferentially burn sugar (from carb-rich food) over body fat, so if you feed the body more fat and fewer carbs you will create more opportunities for the body to burn excess fat. This is a fine balance though so it pays to work with an expert to find what your perfect balance of protein, fats, and carbohydrates are.
- Move daily but not too much. Tell me, do you think our hunter-gatherer ancestors did a 45 minute HIIT session 5 times a week? Not likely, they wanted to conserve their energy BUT they did move all day long and they didn’t have any seats to sit on. I’ve lost count of how many people I’ve seen for weight loss who are over-exercising. Too much exercise creates an abundance of cortisol in the system and I’ve already explained that this can cause the body to hold on to body fat, especially around the belly. What’s more important is to be mobile, moving throughout the day is paramount to weight loss. Getting a fit bit and aiming for more than the recommended 10,000 steps is a really great way to manage this. Oh, and no more than 1-3 HIIT sessions per week!