The obsession with losing weight – no matter the cost – underscores a large-scale problem we currently have in Western society. It doesn’t help that we’re all faced with temptations, including food that is terrible for our waistline. Foods like these offer little nutritional value and often mess with our mental health. This in turn may make us more susceptible to drug use, especially in regard to losing weight due to overeating. A quick fix is also celebrated in our society and "miracle" weight loss transformations make headlines on a daily basis.
For a number of addictive drugs, appetite suppression is a side effect that may be appealing to many people struggling with their weight. Some individuals choose to use stimulants like cocaine and nicotine primarily for their appetite suppression effects. Others may not use drugs for that reason but view the impact on appetite as a bonus.
In reality, depending on drugs for weight loss is not only a slippery slope towards severely compromised health or even death, but it’s also not a permanent solution. The only long-lasting way to achieve a healthy weight is to establish a healthy relationship with food and fitness.
Here are 3 tips to get you started on the right path of losing weight without drugs. These aren’t magical tips but simple basics that can point you in the right direction.
1. Stay Hydrated
People often think that they are hungry when they are really just thirsty. The best way to stay hydrated throughout the day is with water. If you want to spruce things up a little bit, you can squeeze in some lemon or lime or add a splash of juice. Staying hydrated will help stop you from eating when you’re not really hungry and it will also have a positive impact on your skin, keeping it looking younger and fresher down the road.
2. Increase Plant Intake
Processed foods are a huge culprit in today’s American diet. Refined sugars and bleached flours make up a bulk of food options out there that are essentially void of any real nutritional value but dense in calories. You’ll keep your calories down and your nutrient intake up if you increase the plants in your diet. Focus on getting as many vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds and grains as you can. Pay extra attention to leafy greens and whole and ancient grains.
3. Embrace Fitness
Eating well is a big part of losing weight or maintaining a healthy weight, but your muscles and heart need to thrive as well. Pick a type of exercise that appeals to you and engage in it regularly. Whether it’s walking your dog or mountain biking, only you can decide what kind of activity will keep you coming back on a daily basis. Find people to engage in this activity together so you can keep each other accountable. Finally, think of ways to embrace fitness throughout your day too. Take the stairs, park at the back of the parking lot, use a standing desk or do leg exercises while working at a sitting desk. You can even do squats while brushing your teeth. All of these little actions help keep your blood flowing and your body moving—which all pays off in the end.