In case your New Year’s enthusiasm is waning, here are a few tips to keep you going. On this blog I tend to skewer news stories but New Hope 360’s top weight loss tips from 2013 are solid information that leaves me nothing to quibble about. The reason I’m posting at all is that you probably haven’t heard them, at least coupled with the latest science, because the site’s not exactly the New York Times. You might want to get on their mailing list.
The most fascinating thing here is that most of these are counterintuitive. We tend to envy those who don’t need much sleep, roll our eyes at people talking to themselves on the treadmill, think of nuts as fattening and gum as a calorie-free panacea, and assume hitting the ganj leads to midnight adventures trying to find a White Castle. Ah, the road to health and fitness is not always as straight as it seems. Click on the quotes for more info.
1. Sleeping less leads to eating more.
“‘There’s something that changes in our brain when we’re sleepy that’s irrespective of how much energy we need,’ said Dr. Wright, the director of the sleep and chronobiology lab at the University of Colorado at Boulder,” in an interview with The New York Times. “‘The brain wants more even when the energy need has been fulfilled,'”
2. Give yourself pep talks.
Two weeks later, all study volunteers climbed back on the bikes. While the control group experienced no change in performance, the self-talk group was able to pedal longer and noted that the ride felt significantly easier than the previous attempt.
3. Eat nuts.
Harvard University scientists examined nearly 30 years of data from 118,962 men and women and found that those who ate nuts seven or more times per week were not only more likely to exercise and take a multivitamin, but also 20 percent less likely to die over a 30-year period than people who never used a nutcracker.
4. Chewing gum won’t help you eat less.
Researchers conducted two experiments. In the first, chewing gum had no influence on eating patterns except that participants ate less fruit. In the second, participants “consumed fewer meals, consumed more energy per meal, and had a lower nutrient adequacy ratio,”
5. Weed for your waist line?
Researchers analyzed 579 current marijuana smokers and found they had 16 percent lower fasting insulin levels than nonusers, and that their insulin resistance (a marker of diabetes) was reduced by 17 percent.