10 Ways to Get Rid of the Winter Weight Before it Even Piles On
There is a nip in the air. The temperature has already started dropping and soon the woollens will be out. And almost simultaneously the pounds will begin piling on too. Yes, unfortunately, these cold months are when most of us gain weight.
Firstly cooler weather deters most of us from continuing with our active routine. Days get shorter and it becomes difficult to find time to exercise.
Also somehow the craving for comfort food skyrockets during the cold months of November-December-January. When the temperature plummets, we tend to reach for heavier, more warming foods.
How about this year we take preemptive measures and prevent that from happening and make sure that we get rid of the weight even before it piles on.
Is it even possible you ask? Yes! Just follow these 10 steps in the next few weeks.
1. Detox the body and your gut
Eat a non-fat diet. Just put a blanket ban on fried foods. Also say no to all refined, processed and packaged foods to cut off preservatives and chemicals completely. And, go vegetarian for a while. Or at least cut down heavily on non-veg foods.
2. Keep mid-day meals light
Stick to easy to digest foods like khichri and curd for lunch or just a vegetable stew.
3. Have only soup for dinner
The word, “supper,” comes from the words, “soup”. Traditionally supper was supposed to be a light, small meal often called “sup,” indicating it was often just a soup. Time to follow this tradition.
4. Drink Up
Have at least 8 to 10 glasses of water every day to dilute toxins and waste products and allow for their easy drainage from the body. This will also help clear excessive fats from the bloodstream.
5. Drink infused water
Sip infused water (with lemon or cucumber), lemon water, green tea, herbal teas, freshly made fruit juices with no added sugar, coconut water. Definitely drink a cup of peppermint tea every day to flush your intestines.
6. Increase fibre intake
Boost your fibre intake by eating more fruits and vegetables. Target at least 6 -7 combined servings a day, 2 of which should be raw. Fibre is crucial to ensure that your bad fats and toxins are thrown out of your body.
7. Sit out in the morning sun every day
The first morning sunlight instantly blocks any lingering melatonin production during the day, making room for more calorie-burning energy. When you wake up early and get more morning sunlight, it has a positive effect on your sleep cycle.
8. Change your workout routine
Modify your exercise routine and do short bursts of exercise through the day (stair climbing, dancing, slow jogs, skipping rope); these can be as effective as longer duration exercise. Every little bit adds up!
Keep a lid on stress. Cortisol and other stress hormones control both our food intake and energy expenditure. Take time out for yourself (everyday) and ask for help if it’s needed (to keep stress at bay).
10. Try intermittent fasting
Do an intermittent fast for two days a week. This will give your gut a break and help reduce inflammation, shed water weight, and reduce bloating. On these days fast for 12 to 16 hours - eat only between the 12 noon to 6 PM on these days.
(The writer is a nutritionist, weight management consultant and health writer based in Delhi. She is the author of Don't Diet! 50 Habits of Thin People (Jaico) and Ultimate Grandmother Hacks: 50 Kickass Traditional Habits for a Fitter You (Rupa))