By Betty Murray
Losing weight comes down to one thing: are you burning more calories than you take in? Eating well and exercising regularly are essential for a strong, healthy body, but if you want to burn fat, you have to decrease the amount of calories you eat in a day and increase the amount of calories you burn in a day.
This should not mean you keep yourself on a strict 1,000 calorie per day diet. (You should consult with your physician before beginning any diet.) But you can easily cut out a few calories here and there. Doing so may make the difference between being frustrated or satisfied with your progress after working out regularly.
The calories you eat should provide nutrition in the form of vitamins and minerals, antioxidants, protein and complex carbs. Eat to fuel your body. Think about cutting out those “empty calories” that do nothing for you; calorie sources such as sodas, Starbucks drinks, and sweets.
Here are five simple ways to cut out 250 calories a day:
- Swap your sausage, egg and cheese breakfast sandwich for an egg white and veggie wrap or sandwich on an English muffin instead.
- Cut the cream. Creamy sauces, soups and salad dressings may taste great but they’re also loaded with calories that will do nothing for you.
- Stop paying someone else to mow your yard. Some simple manual labor like mowing your lawn and raking leaves will help you burn extra calories in a day. Why pay someone else to get the physical benefit of keeping your yard groomed?
- Split a meal with a friend when you eat out. Sharing meals isn’t about being cheap. It’s one of the best tactics for being sure you don’t overeat.
- Combine strength training with cardio. Both are important, but cardio won’t help you burn calories as fast as strength training can. The more muscle you have, the more calories your body will burn.
Make a conscious effort to cut 250 (or so) calories a day by burning more than you take in and soon you’ll start seeing the slimming effects.
Betty Murray, CN, HHC, RYT is a Certified Nutritionist & Holistic Health Counselor, founder of the Dallas-based integrative medical center, Wellness and founder of the Metabolic Blueprint wellness program. Betty’s nutrition counseling practice specializes in metabolic and digestive disorders and weight loss resistance. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutritional interventions to improve their health. Betty is a member of the Institute of Functional Medicine and the National Association of Nutrition Professionals.