No matter what a person’s weight loss goals are, sometimes it feels like a massive challenge that’s impossible to achieve. However, losing the weight doesn’t require unrealistic goals such as not eating very much, exercising like crazy, or trying other radical diet methods. Making small changes, such as taking a brisk walk in the morning or cutting back on carbs and sugar can completely transform a diet. For people who yearn to get healthy, practicing these morning habits and learning other ways to improve one’s health that we discuss in the Body Reboot book can result in remarkable and positive lifestyle changes.
Eat a High Protein Breakfast
Healthline states that if you eat breakfast high in protein it’ll help reduce cravings and thus, result in more weight loss. Below are some ideas on what type of protein to eat in the morn:
There’s a good reason breakfast is considered the most important meal of the day.
What you eat for breakfast can set the course for your entire day. It determines if you’ll feel full and satisfied until lunch, or if you’ll be heading to the vending machine before your mid-morning snack.
Eating a high-protein breakfast may help cut cravings and aid in weight loss.
In one study in 20 adolescent girls, eating a high-protein breakfast reduced post-meal cravings more effectively than a normal-protein breakfast.
Another small study showed that eating a high-protein breakfast was associated with less fat gain and reduced daily intake and hunger, compared to a normal-protein breakfast.
Protein may also aid weight loss by decreasing levels of ghrelin, the “hunger hormone” that is responsible for increasing appetite.
In fact, one study in 15 men found that a high-protein breakfast suppressed ghrelin secretion more effectively than a high-carb breakfast.
To help get your day off to a good start, consider protein sources like eggs, Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, nuts and chia seeds.
Spend Time in the Sun
If you enjoy getting some sunshine in the early morn, then you are in luck because the Telegraph reveals that being exposed to those first morning rays can kickstart your metabolism.
It is thought that early morning light triggers certain genes which are linked to the internal body clock and kick-starts the metabolism.
“Light is the most potent agent to synchronize your internal body clock that regulates circadian rhythms, which in turn also regulate energy balance,” said study senior author Dr Phyllis Zee, Professor of Neurology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine.
“If a person doesn't get sufficient light at the appropriate time of day, it could de-synchronize your internal body clock, which is known to alter metabolism and can lead to weight gain.
“The message is that you should get more bright light between 8 a.m. and noon.”
Many people do not get enough natural light in the morning, Dr Zee said, because western lifestyles are predominantly indoors.
Office and home environments are usually only about 200 to 300 lux – the measurement of light.
Even on a cloudy day, outdoor light is more than 1,000 lux of brightness. It is difficult to achieve this light level with usual indoor lighting, the scientists noted.
The researchers recommend that morning light could be factored into weight management programmes.
Exercise in the Morning
Not everyone enjoys exercising first thing in the morning, but there’s no denying the fact that it can improve your chances of losing more weight. WebMD discusses how working out first thing in the morning is not only excellent for potential extra weight loss but because it also improves your mood!
But by starting your morning with physical activity, you set the day's pace, Bryant says. “Morning exercisers tend to stick with their exercise habit,” he says. “By doing the bulk of exercise first thing in the morning, you get your exercise in before other distractions can intrude. We can all relate to that — because once the day gets going, it's hard to get off the treadmill called life.”
Research suggests that morning exercise improves sleep, a benefit that could also promote weight loss, Bryant tells WebMD. One study of overweight women between the ages of 50 to 75 showed that those who engaged in consistent morning exercise (about four hours a week) slept better than those who exercised less. The evening exercisers had more trouble falling asleep – even if they fit in the four hours a week.
Bryant explains the connection of sleep and weight loss: “We know that if you have poor quality sleep, it influences certain hormones that control appetite. It is possible that by exercising in the morning — instead of evening – the exercise affects the body's circadian rhythm (your internal body clock) so you get better-quality sleep. Good sleep helps control the hormonal balance that helps control appetite.”
Get More Sleep
Just as WebMD briefly mentioned how important sleep is, a study by Sleep in 2016 revealed that without quality shut-eye, you're more likely to snack more and make unwise decisions. If you're trying to lose weight, it's not a wise idea to be constantly sleep deprived.
A robust daily variation of 2-AG concentrations with a nadir around the middle of the sleep/overnight fast, followed by a continuous increase culminating in the early afternoon, was evident under both sleep conditions but sleep restriction resulted in an amplification of this rhythm with delayed and extended maximum values. Concentrations of 2-OG followed a similar pattern, but with a lesser amplitude. When sleep deprived, participants reported increases in hunger and appetite concomitant with the afternoon elevation of 2-AG concentrations, and were less able to inhibit intake of palatable snacks.
Drink More Water
Of course, no morning is complete without drinking plenty of water. It’s a lot easier to forget to drink water than many realize, which is why you should pay particular attention to it and keep track of how much water you are drinking not only during the morning, as Healthline recommends, but also throughout the day.
Starting your morning with a glass or two of water is an easy way to enhance weight loss.
Water can help increase your energy expenditure, or the number of calories your body burns, for at least 60 minutes.
In one small study, drinking 16.9 fluid ounces (500 ml) of water led to a 30% increase in metabolic rate, on average.
Another study found that overweight women who increased their water intake to over 34 ounces (one liter) per day lost an extra 4.4 pounds (2 kg) over one year, without making any other changes in their diet or exercise routine.
What’s more, drinking water may reduce appetite and food intake in some individuals.
One study in 24 older adults showed that drinking 16.9 fluid ounces (500 ml) of water reduced the number of calories consumed at breakfast by 13%.
In fact, most studies on the topic have shown that drinking 34–68 ounces (1–2 liters) of water per day can aid in weight loss.
Starting your morning with water and staying well hydrated throughout the day is a great way to boost weight loss with minimal effort.
A study by an Obesity journal in 2008 also found that people who drink more water in the morning even lose more weight. I guess we better start drinking more water in the AM!
Data from short-term experiments suggest that drinking water may promote weight loss by lowering total energy intake and/or altering metabolism. The long-term effects of drinking water on change in body weight and composition are unknown, however.
This study tested for associations between absolute and relative increases in drinking water and weight loss over 12 months.
METHODS AND PROCEDURES:
Secondary analyses were conducted on data from the Stanford A TO Z weight loss intervention on 173 premenopausal overweight women (aged 25-50 years) who reported <1 l/day drinking water at baseline. Diet, physical activity, body weight, percent body fat (dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry), and waist circumference were assessed at baseline, 2, 6, and 12 months. At each time point, mean daily intakes of drinking water, noncaloric, unsweetened caloric (e.g., 100% fruit juice, milk) and sweetened caloric beverages, and food energy and nutrients were estimated using three unannounced 24-h diet recalls. Beverage intake was expressed in absolute (g) and relative terms (% of beverages). Mixed models were used to test for effects of absolute and relative increases in drinking water on changes in weight and body composition, controlling for baseline status, diet group, and changes in other beverage intake, the amount and composition of foods consumed and physical activity.
Absolute and relative increases in drinking water were associated with significant loss of body weight and fat over time, independent of covariates.
The results suggest that drinking water may promote weight loss in overweight dieting women.
Who knew all of these early morning habits could help transform your health so much. Small daily challenges certainly can make a huge difference, just like going on a low carb diet can too. We care about helping people get healthy, which is why at the time of writing this post, we're giving away free copies of the Body Reboot book. Help us cover the cost of shipping, and we’d be happy to send you a FREE book. Head to this page TODAY to see if there are any remaining copies.
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