While tips might seem obvious, or even simplistic, being reminded of them still has value. If you regularly feel sluggish, can’t seem to get into gear, or just don’t know what to do to get back on track – it may be that focusing on one or more of these tips is just what you need to make weight loss after 40 a reality.
- Eat Breakfast – and fuel your body for the day.
- Stay hydrated – and you will look and feel young for decades to come.
- Sleep well – to maintain energy levels and stay sharp mentally.
- Start a food journal – track of what you eat every day; the first step to changing your unhealthy habits.
- Get a Thorough Check-up – Have your thyroid tested and make sure your liver is in good shape.
a. Have your Thyroid Tested
b. Have your Liver Tested
1. Eat Breakfast – fuel for the day
Eating breakfast gives your metabolism a jump-start on the day, and puts you in control of any cravings that may develop during the day. If you miss the first meal of the day, it’s easy to get hungry by mid-morning, making you much more likely to engage in mindless snacking, and overeating.
Repeated studies have shown that eating breakfast every day is linked to maintaining a healthy weight. Irregular eating habits can lead to bloating and can play havoc with your blood sugar. You need stable blood sugar levels to maintain energy throughout the day – and keep you from gaining weight.
2. Stay Hydrated – to look and feel young longer
One of the biggest factors responsible for accelerating the ageing process is dehydration. Being adequately hydrated helps with: digestion, mental focus, healthy looking skin, curbing your appetite, and shedding those unwanted pounds.
Ideally, you should drink about half of your body weight in water each day. You should drink more water if you exercise regularly, or if you live in a warm, dry climate. An example: if you weigh 150 lbs., aim for 75 fluid ounces of water daily. If you enjoy coffee, tea, alcohol, sodas, or salty foods, you should drink more water – or – you can stay hydrated with herbal teas and vegetable juices.
We often confuse hunger with dehydration. Before you reach for a snack, drink a glass of water instead. Drinking before meals can help promote weight loss. Multiple studies show those who drink two glasses of water before meals feel fuller and eat less.
A good measure for seeing if you are amply hydrated is to check your urine. If you are sufficiently hydrated, your urine should be fairly clear and shouldn’t have an offensive odor. If it’s dark yellow, you need to drink more water. Your lips are another indicator. If they are chapped or parched, you maybe dehydrated.
3. Sleep well – and give your body the rest it needs
There is plenty of research that indicates those who sleep five hours or less per night, weigh five pounds more than those getting at least seven hours of shut eye a night. Lack of restful sleep can alter your circadian rhythm, which can lead to inefficient body regulation of energy balance, metabolism, and appetite.
If you aren’t getting adequate sleep, it can have repercussions on your well-being that even the best diet and exercise routine won’t be able to repair.
While it is important to get 7-8 hours’ of sleep a night, the quality of your sleep is just as important. If you are easily wakened, it can disrupt not only your sleep, but your body’s repair process, leading to increased ageing.
If you are experiencing difficulty sleeping, here are a few helpful tips:
- If you find yourself waking to use the bathroom in the middle of the night, avoid drinking a lot of liquids in the latter part of the day. Make 6pm your cut off for your water intake. (Just make sure you drink plenty of water before then.)
- Examine your diet. Are you eating a lot of sugar, or drinking too much caffeine? Both can affect your sleep adversely.
- Try not to eat within 2 hours of bedtime. If your body is still digesting food it can make it difficult to sleep, and for proper digestion to take place.
- Reduce mental stimulation leading up to bedtime. Watching television and looking at the internet can leave you overstimulated and restless. Turn off your electronics at least one hour before you intend to sleep.
- Lighting and temperature are both key to getting a good night’s sleep. Artificial light can mess with your circadian rhythm, causing disturbed sleep. Keep lighting low in the run-up to bedtime and, when you do go to bed, try to make the room as dark as possible.
- Get into a regular routine – going to bed at the same time each night and waking up at the same time each day can be helpful regulating your circadian rhythm.
Tip: There is a great deal of sleep research that suggests the optimal temperature for a good night’s sleep is about 65° F. So, keep your bedroom cool at night, and snuggle deep beneath the covers. Plus, the white noise created by an electric fan can help calm you for sleep, while also drowning out noises from outside.
In an upcoming post, we’ll examine the other tips for weight loss after 40. For now, what do you think of these three important weight loss tips?