Obesity is a worldwide concern. In 2018, the number of overweight people had increased by nearly 50 percent since the early 2000s. And being overweight and obese are linked to more deaths worldwide than being underweight. Nowadays, more and more people are becoming increasingly aware of the importance of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Following a healthy diet and exercise plan results in a lot of benefits, including losing weight to improve overall health.
Benefits of Weight Loss
Numerous studies have supported that a five to ten percent decrease in weight can already change your health. Here are some other well-known benefits tied up with weight loss:
Decreased risk of heart disease
Numerous studies have associated the risk of heart disease with a person’s weight. Being 20 percent overweight significantly increases the risk of developing heart diseases, especially if excess weight is carried in the abdominal area (apple-shaped individuals).
Decreased risk of diabetes
Patients who have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes are most likely to be advised to achieve weight loss. By losing weight, glucose tolerance can be improved, and it can also help prevent the development of common diabetes-related complications.
Reduced back pain
Excess weight compresses the lumbar spine in the lower back leading to a pinched nerve and lower back pain. People who are overweight and experiencing lower back pains will find that weight loss can relieve some of the pain.
Weight loss combined with improved fitness has shown to cause up to 50 percent reduction in the risk of losing mobility in overweight or obese individuals.
In addition to its medical benefits, weight loss can also lead to an improvement in the many different aspects of life. This includes increased energy, greater confidence, improved body image, a more active social life, and better sex life.
The fundamental cause of being overweight is an energy imbalance between calorie intake and calorie output. In order to lose fat, a person needs to burn more calories than they take in. For this reason, many people would automatically think it is logical to eat less or restrict food intake and move more.
Health experts have stressed on the damaging effects when starving oneself. Numerous researches have shown that following a restricted diet is not a sustainable lifestyle due to many physiological and biochemical factors.
There are plenty of options for snacking while staying on track with weight loss and living a healthy lifestyle. Here are some healthy and guilt-free snacks that you can eat while trying to lose weight:
Guilt-free Snacks Preparation Guide
Acai Smoothie Dessert Bowls
Smoothie bowls are gaining popularity these days because they are not only picture-worthy but because they are a healthy and delicious alternative to an ice cream sundae or a banana split. Key nutrients for this guilt-free snack are acai berries, filled with antioxidants, and coconut oil.
2 cups of acai berry puree
1 frozen banana
3 large frozen strawberries
1 tablespoon of dark chocolate chips
¼ cup of coconut milk
Blend the acai berry puree, banana, strawberries together. Add the coconut milk in splashes to create a thick and creamy texture. Top with the chocolate chips, shaved coconuts, and roasted almonds. Enjoy!
Banana with Peanut Butter
One of the easiest and cheapest snack combo that almost everyone has in their pantry. Bananas will keep you full for a long time thanks to their high fiber content, while a tablespoon of peanut butter will satiate your sweet tooth cravings.
Simply cut the banana into slices and add enough peanut butter on top of each slice. Remember not to go overboard with the peanut butter, though.
Without the overflow of butter and salt, popcorn is the perfect snack with a mere 93 calories for 3 cups. It is also a fiber-rich snack, which can keep you fuller for a longe time.
Chocolate Chia Pudding
By simply stirring chia seeds and chocolate-flavored whey protein into some liquid, anyone can enjoy this creamy concoction that is reminiscent of chocolate pudding.
¼ cup of cocoa powder
1 tablespoon of chia seeds
¼ cup maple syrup
1 scoop whey protein in chocolate flavor
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups of almond milk or skim milk
Mix the almond milk and cocoa powder. Once the cocoa powder has been mixed well, add the chia seeds, maple syrup, protein powder, and vanilla extract. Whisk for approximately two to three minutes or until the mixture is smooth. Cover the mixture and place in the refrigerator for at least two hours or until the mixture has thickened. Serve and enjoy!
Hummus and Carrot Sticks
This Mediterranean chickpea dip is rich in protein, has only about 30 calories per tablespoon, and will keep you full longer. When paired with a crunchy carrot, this is the perfect guilt-free snack for just about anyone.
Greek Yogurt with Berries
Greek yogurt, when mixed with some berries, and maybe a drizzle of honey, is a very satiating snack that feels decadent but is actually low in calories.
A major change in perspective and behavior is needed for a successful and sustainable weight loss experience. With the number of options for guilt-free snacking out there, there is no need to starve yourself or destroy your diet. Enjoy these robust guilt-free snacks, and you will be able to train both mind and body to crave for these healthy treats.