Want to know how some women seem to stay effortlessly thin? Well, there are a few little tricks that keep the kilos at bay that don’t involve exercise, but does require more awareness of what you eat. If you keep these seven diet secrets of slim women in mind, you’ll stop your intake of too many kilojoules (and bad-for-you food) in no time.
1. Drink more
Ever wondered why thin women always seem to be drinking water? Here’s why: simply drinking water, or a can of diet drink, before eating can help you lose weight, according to researchers at Virginia Tech, US. They found that a diet drink, or two glasses of plain old water before a meal, will fill up your stomach and significantly reduce kilojoule consumption, helping you to lose your love handles.
2. Know your labels
Thin women also know to read food labels on grocery products before buying. And the thing they’re looking for apart from saturated fat? Sugar. Sugar is known to put on weight because while our bodies need sugar for energy, eating more calories than we are burning off results in a build up of fat. It’s a fact that today’s packaged foods contain too much sugar than our diets really need – even a ‘healthy’ breakfast cereal can have several teaspoons of sugar per serve and bottles of pasta and curry sauces are also loaded with sugar. By reading food labels, you’ll drop your sugar intake, and keep weight off. An easy way to decide whether it’s hit or miss? If sugar is one of the first five ingredients on a food’s nutrition label, it’s probably best to put it back on the shelf.
3. Snack on popcorn
If you make some at home – no, not the microwave kind – popcorn is a low-fat treat that’s also a wholegrain. This means it won’t give you the fast sugar rush associated with other snacks, such as chips or biscuits, but it will deliver a slower boost of energy that lasts far longer than the rom-com you’re watching. Just remember to use a small amount of oil to pop your corn – and ditch the butter!
4. Don’t skip meals
The worst thing you can do when trying to diet is to miss a meal, in a bid to cut your kilojoule intake. In fact, it could end up making you put on weight, instead of losing it, as studies show that our brains crave high-calorie foods, like cakes, over healthy foods when we are hungry. So no matter how busy you are, be sure to eat three regular meals a day to avoid junk food hunger binges.
5. Eat a banana a day
If your tummy lets down your silhouette, getting more and more bloated as the day goes on, try snacking on a banana. Packed with the mineral potassium, which regulates your body’s fluid balance, the fruit will help reduce a bloated stomach and keep your midriff looking thin and flat.
6. Know the 20-minute rule
Thin women also take time to chew their food properly. As it takes 20 minutes for the brain to tell the stomach that it’s full, eating in a hurry means you won’t be giving your body time to pick up on this internal signal, and may well end up consuming more kilojoules than you need for a healthy diet.
7. Indulge in shelled nuts
While nuts are a fantastic source of protein, they can also add inches to your waistline if you tend to eat the whole packet. To slow down snacking weight gain, health experts recommend buying shelled nuts – it takes longer to get to the nut, so you’ll eat more slowly. Plus they also contain less salt.