How to Burn 500 Calories Every Day with Little Effort
Slashing your calorie intake is the most basic way to lose weight, but how many do you really have to get rid of before you reap the wellness benefits? In order to drop a pound or two a week – which is the best way to lose weight long-term whilst still taking care of your wellbeing – you need to trim 500 calories each day – so how do you do it?
1. Get that foot tapping: We’ve all got that skinny friend who seems to eat whatever they like without putting on a pound, but while you might attribute that annoying trait to good genes or a speedy metabolism, the truth is your friend probably fidgets a lot. Just by tapping your feet, walking around while you’re on the phone, or tapping out a tune with your fingers, you can burn up to 350 calories a day.
2. Don’t go nuts: Although eating nuts can help you to replace unhealthy snacks, researchers at Cornell University have found that the moreish quality of nuts means that you’ll keep munching unnecessarily – especially if they’re in a big bowl. The bigger the serving bowl, the more you’ll eat. Sure, nuts have heart-healthy fats, but they’re also high in calories, containing about 175 calories per handful. If you can cut nuts altogether, switch to pistachios. There are just 80 calories per handful and the effort of shelling will slow down your munching.
3. Avoid eating in front of the TV: According to research from the University of Massachusetts, eating in front of the TV causes you to consume an extra 288 calories. If you eat at the table instead, and trade one hour of telly time for a casual walk – both of which enable you to spend more quality time with your partner or family – you can burn 527 calories in a day. Job done.
4. Watch secret salad calories: The amount of fresh greens, beans and veggies in salads are good for your wellness as well as your diet, but limit your use of high-fat dressings or toppings like cheese, eggs, bacon or croutons. You can save 500 or more calories by having just one topping, using half the dressing and adding flavourful but lower-calorie veggies like roasted bell peppers, grilled onions, or mushrooms.
5. Use smaller plates: If you normally eat off a 12-inch plate, opt for one that’s 10-inches or smaller. Not only will this make you eat 20 to 25% less and save up to 500 calories, researchers say that you won’t feel any less full, either.
6. Count your crisps and crackers: The problem with eating snacks from a large bag or box is that it is way too tempting to eat until the bag is empty. If you chow down your average nine-ounce bag of crisps to the crumbs at the bottom, you’re loading up on 1,260 calories – and that’s just if you don’t have dip! Stick to one, reasonable serving of no more than 15 crisps, which is about 140 calories. Alternately, you can save 1,120 calories by picking up some 100-calorie snack packs.
7. Serve dinner before you sit: While there’s something lovely and communal about family-style meals in which everyone tucks into platters and bowls of food on the table, this just encourages you to go back for seconds and thirds without really paying attention to how much you’re eating. Filling plates before bringing them to the table, and leaving the serving dishes in the kitchen, can help you to cut hundreds of calories and really think before you go up for another helping.