As we molt out of our winter skin, the pressure is on to get ready for beaches, vacations and bathing suits. Rather than hiding, here is my slimmer by summer plan with weight loss secrets from around the world.
STEP 1 – Jumpstart Your Metabolism
Fasts, detoxes, cleanses- every culture and religion around the world engages in some form of dietary jumpstart. I believe in doing something to reengage your body. We know that detoxification helps hormones work better, improves digestion and speeds up metabolism.
I usually recommend a 7-10 day protein based detox. I am wary of juice fasts and cleanses since these may slow down metabolism due to the lack of protein.
STEP 2 – Pick the right drink
You are what you drink!! Each drink choice has so much potential for good or bad steps to weight loss. Sodas, juice and alcoholic drinks are all loaded with calories. Water is calorie free and can play a role in appetite suppression. Other drinks, however, may have additional wonder powers.
Picking green tea over coffee is a step towards weight loss. Green tea balances insulin and sugar, while coffee will increase it- resulting in more weight loss and faster metabolism.
Yerba mate is a common drink in South America and possibly the secret of Brazilian beauties as it speeds up metabolism and cuts down appetite.
Roselle tea, used by Thai natives around the world, can increase weight loss and speed up metabolism. It has also been found to lower cholesterol.
STEP 3 – Eat at the right time
We now know that eating late into the night disrupts hormones and increases your weight. Eat within a 12 hr window, giving your body a daily fast or detoxification period. Eat frequently through the day but cut off eating by 8pm.
STEP 4 – Move
Exercise, exercise- heard it all before. Exercise, however, does not need to be a planned ordeal. Moving throughout the day in 15 min bursts 3-4 x per day revs up your metabolism and leads to weight loss. If you have a desk job or work from home, set your timer for every 3 hours- get up, walk briskly, do a set of jumping jacks and sit back down. Other countries have lower obesity rates when they have to walk everywhere, since walking is sporadic but daily movement.
STEP 5 – Type Yourself
Learn about your body, your chemistry and your hormones. This is where you may need me, I am a big believer that diets should be individualized, workouts individualized accounting for your body chemistry and energetic status. Learn your type and stay slimmer for life- until then, just get slimmer by summer!
Tazneem Bhatia (Dr. Taz), the medical director and founder of The Atlanta Center for Holistic and Integrative Medicine. She has been featured on The Dr. Oz Show, The Today Show, CNN, and many others. Board certified in holistic medicine in 2003 by the American Board of Holistic Medicine, she has also completed certifications in nutrition and acupuncture and treats patients with a variety of health issues.