At the start of a new year, it’s easy to let your resolutions fall by the wayside, especially when it comes to your diet and aspired fitness regime. MOJEHMEN chats to Dr Nas Al Jafari, consultant at Intercare Wellness, who gives us his top tips on how to lose weight and stay healthy in 2018.
1. Focus on eating whole foods. Avoid anything with a food label. A general rule of thumb, if it didn’t exist 100 years ago then you probably shouldn’t be eating it.
2. Eat 2-to-3 meals a day of equal size portions. If you’re following the rule of ‘whole foods’ then you should eat until you’re satisfied: you want to avoid snacking, this will cause hormone imbalances.
3. Don’t count calories. They don’t matter (if you’re following rule no.1).
4. Eat as diverse a range of vegetables a possible. As well as being nutrient-packed, the fibre is what feeds your gut bacteria and improves the richness of your microbiome. The healthier your microbiome, the more balanced your hormones will be.
5. Consume additional fibre (pre-biotics) in the form of chia seeds or flax seeds or an equivalent. Similarly, consume a high quality multi-strain probiotic.
6. Consume your food during daylight hours or leave 4 hours between eating and going to bed. The body is primed eat during the day and rest after sunset, and this includes your gut.
7. Have at least a 12-hour fasting window during your day (which can be during sleep too!). This helps bring your Insulin in check, otherwise known as your fat-storing hormone.
8. Incorporate mindfulness exercises and relaxation to your daily routine. This will help keep the dreaded Cortisol (stress hormone) in check.
9. Obtain 7 to 8 hours of good quality sleep per night. Poor sleep makes us hungry and less energy efficient.
10. Regular exercise will help balance your hormones, but don’t fall in to the trap of over-training. This will wreak havoc with your cortisol, therefore holding on to the central fat you’re so desperately trying to lose.