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Be the Biggest Loser: How to Lose Weight

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Cassidy Cox

Professor Elliott

ENG 1001-17

25 October 2017

Be the Biggest Loser: How to Lose Weight

According to the CDC, today in America two-thirds of adults and nearly one-third of children are obese. Obesity can make your life difficult—from health issues such as heart disease and high blood pressure to emotional issues such as depression. Fortunately, obesity is self-treatable. By adopting healthy eating habits, exercising regularly and getting plenty of rest, you can lose weight and improve your life while doing so.

One of the main factors in obesity is a poor diet. If you are looking to lose weight, start here. The first step in bettering your diet is to cut back on starches such as rice, breads, pastas, and sugars such as fruits and candy. You want to start with cutting sugars and starches because these foods stimulate secretion of insulin the most. Insulin is the main fat storage hormone in the body so once you lower your insulin output, the body starts burning fats instead of carbohydrates. You will also lose a lot of water weight when lowering your insulin because your kidneys get rid of excess sodium and water from your body. Next, now that you know what not to eat, let’s find out what you should eat. Each meal should include protein, fats, and low-carb vegetables. According to nutritionist Kris Gunners, protein is the key to a healthy diet. Foods high in protein include meats, eggs, and fish. A diet high in protein has been shown to lower compulsive thoughts about food by sixty-percent per day. You should load your plate with low-carb vegetables such as broccoli, kale, spinach, and other greens. Eating these vegetables along with protein will give you fiber, vitamins, and minerals needed to be healthy. Lastly, you need to include fats in your diet. Fats such as olive oil, butter, and coconut oil are great fats to use in cooking. Coconut oil is the best cooking oil to use because this oil is more fulfilling than other cooking fats. By following the diet above you will begin to feel happier and more energetic throughout your day.

Exercise is a great way to lose weight and reduce feelings of stress or depression. Start by finding find a workout regime. You can workout at home, in the gym, or even in the park. When you begin to exercise, hydrate well and start with a warmup such as walking. After your warmup, you can choose between strength training or cardio, even do both if you would like. Strength training includes lifting weights or using your own body weight for resistance. You can purchase weights for at-home use or use gym weights if you are a member. Remember to start with low weight such as lifting five to ten pounds and gradually increase the weight over a period of weeks. If you would rather use your own body weight for resistance in your strength training you may do pushups, squats, or sit-ups. If strength training is not of your interest there is another option, cardio. Any workout that raises your heartrate is considered a cardio workout. You may briskly walk, jog, swim, or bike to raise your heartrate. Many gyms offer cardio workout classes such as Zumba. Zumba is a workout class that uses dancing as a fun way to raise heartrates. If you choose not to partake in a class, there are many workout videos online to follow along to that anyone can access. Muscle is the enemy of fat and through exercising you will improve your mental and physical health resulting in a happier life.

Getting enough rest is a key factor to losing weight. Not only does a good night’s rest give you energy throughout your day but we have evidence from science to explain how rest helps weight loss. Taking a hot bath, inhaling and exhaling deeply, and aromatherapy are all ways of relaxing before bed. By taking a hot bath before bed, your muscles relax and your body temperature rises which makes your body ready to fall asleep. Another action you can do to relax is to inhale and exhale deeply. While inhaling and exhaling, bring your focus onto your breathing. When your mind starts to wander, bring your attention back to your breathing. Inhale and exhale deeply for up to ten minutes, that is all it takes to calm your mind. One more practice to relax yourself before bed is aromatherapy. You can purchase sprays or essential oils for your aromatherapy needs. There are many sprays made to be sprayed on your pillow or in the air before bed. Essential oils can be applied to your body or put into a diffuser to be dispersed in the air. Lavender, sandalwood, and rose are some essential oils shown to help with sleep and relaxation. Hormones control almost everything in our bodies. Leptin and ghrelin are the two hormones that control the feeling of hunger. According to Adam Bornstein of, leptin is a hormone produced in fat cells and the less leptin you produce, the emptier your stomach feels. Ghrelin on the other hand is what stimulates hunger. Also, when ghrelin is produced your body increases the amount of fat you store. What all of this means is that basically you need a balance of leptin and ghrelin to lose weight but lack of sleep makes this feat impossible. When you don’t receive enough sleep, your cortisol levels rise. This is the hormone that activates in your brain and makes you want food. With lack of sleep, your thoughts lead to poor decision making, such as eating that second slice of cake when you know you should not. All in all, poor sleep messes up the hormone levels in your brain leaving you feeling unsatisfied after meals. Remember, sleep is important, don’t shrug it off.

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