Easy Ways To Fool Your Body Into Burning More Fat
When it comes to diet and exercise, it can feel like there’s only so much work you can do if you’re not seeing results. We’ve all made a commitment to spin class only to watch the scale stop going down after the first month. Or crash dieted only to watch the weight try to creep back up on us in no time.
The problem? Our bodies are designed to hold onto fat, not lose it. Back in the day that was a good thing, but we don’t live in the wild anymore. And in modern times, sometimes you have to trick your body into losing weight when it doesn’t want to.
The good news is that these diet and exercise “tricks” are actually easier than sweating your hair out at the gym six days a week or having a bare-bones diet. Get your body to do the work for you and you can lose without a ton of extra effort.
Nutritionists say that the key to tricking your body into burning fat is to keep your metabolism burning by eating little meals all day.
The trick? Don’t go longer than four hours without eating anything. Any longer than that and your metabolism goes into starvation mode and stores fat instead of burning it.
Stay in Bed
When you’re low on sleep you store fat.
The trick? Go to bed early enough so that you wake up naturally just before your alarm. That’s your body’s way of telling you that you’ve had enough sleep to burn fat during the day.
Don’t Sweat for so Long
Hit a plateau with your workout? That’s because bodies are great at adjusting to the amount you burn so they don’t have to work as hard.
The trick? Work out in intervals, otherwise known as HIIT training. Work out at a level 10 (like sprinting or jumping rope) for two minutes, then at a level two or three (like walking in place or doing sit-ups) for two minutes. Keep switching it up and you will trick your body into staying in fat-burning mode and working hard.
Eat More Protein
It builds lean muscle that burns fat better.
The trick? Break out the food scale to make sure you’re eating a gram of protein per pound of your current weight (or goal weight if you’re trying to lose). It’s enough to kick your muscle-building efforts into high gear to burn more fat.
Fight Fat with Fiber
When your body isn’t great at fighting fat, fiber can help.
The trick? Pair protein with fiber to have a balanced meal. You need about 25 grams of fruits or vegetables a day to get the benefit.
Shop in the Organic Aisle
Pesticides and other food additives actually slow your metabolism down to make it harder to burn fat.
The trick? Buy organic and grass-fed food whenever you can. It’s a little harder on your wallet, but it could change the number on the scale even if you’re not on a diet.
When you’re sitting, it signals your body to stop burning fat.
The trick? Stand up at least once every four hours to kick your fat-burning enzymes into gear. Even just standing at your desk while you take calls for a few minutes will keep you from slipping back into fat storage mode.
Drink It Cold
Hot beverages don’t make you gain fat but they don’t help you burn it either.
The trick? Drink everything ice cold. You’ll burn 50 more calories a day. That’s enough to lose five pounds a year without doing anything else.
No Late Dinners
Your body puts in serious repair work while you’re in bed — and you can use that to your advantage.
The trick? Don’t eat three hours before bed. When it comes time to burn in your sleep, your body will use your fat reserves (and not your late-night snack) for energy and you’ll lose a few ounces every night.
Turn up the Heat
Hot food doesn’t just make you sweat, it speeds up your metabolism.
The trick? Eat hot food whenever you can. And if anyone gives you crap for the hot sauce in your purse, tell them it can speed up your metabolism nearly 25 percent after every meal.
Turn Down the Drinks
A shot of vodka doesn’t taste like sugar, but that’s how your body stores it.
The trick? Think of alcohol like cookies because your body turns it into sugar and then fat in the same way. You wouldn’t eat a sleeve of cookies when you’re trying to lose weight, so don’t overdo it at happy hour either.
Eating protein isn’t the only way to build fat-burning muscle.
The trick? Lift weights every other day you work out. Just looking to lightly tone up? Follow this guide to lifting weights without bulking up.
Eat a Big Breakfast
When you don’t start your metabolism by skipping breakfast, you give it the signal that it’s not going to have to work much that day — and it won’t.
The trick? Eat breakfast. The bigger, the better. Eat 1/4 or even up to 1/2 of your calories for the day in your first meal and you’ll burn better all day (and eat less later on).
Drink Your Milk
One way to stop your body from getting fat is to stop it from storing fat.
The trick? Have several servings of milk, yogurt and cheese a day. The calcium will help you absorb less fat from the other foods you eat later in the day.