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5 Surprising Weight Loss Secrets

Written by: Joel Evan, Executive Contributor

Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.

 

As a health coach and integrative health practitioner, I work with many people looking to lose weight. Unfortunately, most of my coaching clients think that weight loss has to be extremely difficult. They think eating healthy means eating bland and terrible food like grilled chicken breasts or ground turkey every other day. They believe they need to be in the gym five days a week for hours and hours. They also think that restrictive diets and fads are the keys to permanent weight loss, but we know none of that is true or sustainable in the long run. Only 27% of people who attempt to lose weight actually get the desired results. And 95% of people who do get results lose them within three years or even gain it all back. I want to share with you five tools that cannot only drastically move the needle when it comes to losing weight, but they're easy to implement for anyone's current lifestyle and sustainable for long-term success.

Mindset


As you get older, losing weight can be daunting, as most people feel like their metabolism slows down and they cannot burn fat efficiently. One of the fundamental tenets to losing weight is having the proper mindset and belief that you can lose the weight. Begin priming your mind daily with positive affirmations or visualizations to help reprogram those negative beliefs. If you're someone who thinks losing weight is difficult. Ask yourself, "What would this look like if it were easy?" When you've struggled or made the wrong food choices, ask yourself if you were really connected with your why and mission. I highly doubt that you were and that you let the waves of life take you where they wanted. This is why a bulletproof mindset is imperative.


Time-Restricted Eating (TRE)


Most of us graze on foods for 16-18 hours a day. Compress your eating time so that you're only eating within an eight-hour window total. Studies with mice compared a group given access to a high-fat diet whenever they wanted to another group that had the same amount of food, but they had to eat all their food within an 8-hour window. The mice were fed a diet of high-fat/high-sugar, which was shown to cause severe metabolic diseases, but within an 8-hour window, they were completely protected from the diseases. The TRE group didn't gain excess weight, and they had normal blood sugar and normal cholesterol levels.


Exercise Snacking


Most people, especially my older clients with kids and a hectic work schedule, don't have the time to commit to hours in the gym. That's where exercise snacking comes into play. Studies show that three 10 min sessions of exercise scattered throughout the day offer at least the same and perhaps even more benefit than 30 mins of continuous exercise. If committing to these mini-workouts proves to be too difficult, look for ways to be active throughout your day. We see that our jobs and sedentary lifestyles are major contributors to metabolic disease. Simply moving your body for five minutes every hour throughout the day has been shown to have more downstream effects on overall health than actually going to the gym five days a week.


Sleep


If you're not getting enough sleep, you're probably overworked and increasing levels of the stress hormone, cortisol. Overweight individuals secreted higher levels of the stress hormone cortisol. Cortisol tells the body to hold onto fat. Sleep-deprived individuals also had a decrease in leptin, your satiety hormone. Chances of you eating bad food increase when you're not getting enough sleep. Researchers also discovered that sleep deprivation reduced the "higher-order" functions of the brain (your pre-frontal cortex) and instead saw an increase in activity in the primitive areas of the brain, the amygdala. The amygdala is a more emotional, reactive, survival-based part of the brain. The pre-frontal cortex, that higher executive function of the brain, is associated with evaluation, self-control, and rational decision-making. Aim for 7 hours of sleep, making sure you're falling asleep during the critical 4-hour window (10:00 p.m.-2:00 a.m.). Around 10:00 p.m., your body goes through a transformation following the natural rise in melatonin. The purpose of this transformation is to increase internal metabolic energy to repair, strengthen, and rejuvenate your body. Increased production of antioxidant hormones happens at this time to help protect your DNA from damage, improve your brain function, and more.


Post-Prandial Walks


Take a walk after big meals. A Japanese study divided participants into three groups and had each group either sit, stand, or walk after a meal. They found that low-volume, easy walking for 30 minutes after a meal kept the concentration of fat in the blood 18% lower than sitting or standing after a meal. I can attest, this is one of the easiest and best proven 'hacks' to implement into your routine for overall metabolic health. I interviewed Josh Clemente, founder of Levels Health, a company that uses an app to give you biometric feedback through a Continuous Glucose Monitor (CGM) to show how your body reacts to food and exercise, "What is the most impactful thing someone could do to improve their metabolic health?" His answer based on tons of data and thousands and thousands of users uploading their real-time glucose levels was this, post-prandial walks. Through my own experience with a CGM, I can also confirm the drop in my levels of glucose was very noticeable.


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Joel Evans, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine

Joel Evan is a health coach and integrative health practitioner that helps his clients get to the root cause of their issues so that they can start living the best version of themselves. After suffering from his own health issues as a young child such as allergies and an abnormal bone growth, and then watching his children suffer from gut issues and an imbalanced immune system, Joel has made it his mission to develop strategies and protocols that can rebalance the body so that his clients can be more vibrant, more joyful, and more confident so they can go out and crush their goals and impact the world in a bigger way. Joel is also a Neufit electric stim physical therapist and has helped several clients get out of chronic pain, and recover from surgery and neurological disorders. Joel is also the host of "The Hacked Life" podcast where he's had the chance to sit down with some of the leading health experts in the world, such as Dave Asprey, Dr Mindy Pelz, and Dr John Jaquish. His motto: "Live Healthy, Live Happy."

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