A 2014 study found that the type of fat we consume might make all the difference. Participants in the study were asked to eat 750 extra calories every day for seven weeks. Those having excess calories from saturated fats had activated cells that promoted fat storage in the belly and increased insulin resistance. However, individuals who had a high consumption of polyunsaturated fats found in fatty fish, nuts and seeds, gained less abdominal fat and were more likely to increase muscle mass instead.
Although you shouldn’t go to bed starving (that presents its own sleepytime problems), you also shouldn’t hit the sack completely stuffed. When you eat a large meal before bed, your body works to digest it long into the night — and if your body is still worked up, so are you. The later you fall asleep, the less rest you’ll get, and you’ll wake up feeling groggy and more likely to reach for calorie-dense items. We know that you’re still cool, and you’d like to eat dinner at a more fashionable hour, but supping on the earlier side could be a huge boost to your weight-loss goals. (And avoid these 30 Bad Habits That Lead to a Fat Belly!)
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There’s another huge reason to cut back on bovine: “One in three men over 40 will die from heart disease, and eating more of a plant-based diet is the best way to optimize endothelial nitric oxide levels for cardiovascular protection and health,” says Kominiarek. In fact, a Mediterranean diet particularly heavy in healthy fats—olive oil, eggs, nuts, fatty fish—lowers your risk of not only heart disease, but also type 2 diabetes and certain cancers, according to a new study analysis in the Annals of Internal Medicine. That’s three of the top 10 causes of death for American males that you can reduce your risk of just by eating less meat and more healthy plant-based fats. 4 Risky Exercises People OVER 40 Must AVOID
In a study conducted by Swiss and German researchers, lucky participants ate about 1.5 ounces of dark chocolate daily for two weeks. Ultimately, these chocolate nibblers had lower stress-hormone levels and a more regulated metabolism than a control group. Scientists speculate that chemicals in cocoa, such as flavonoids, play a role in regulating metabolism by alleviating stress that can cause your fat-burning engines to go on the fritz. Should you think this is a license to go wild, take heed: We’re talking small amounts of high-quality dark chocolate. Researchers say 1.5 ounces is enough.
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Remember when you were little and would try to write with different hands? Eventually, a long time ago, you probably gave up on that. But personal trainer to the stars Jay Cardiello says it can be a great weight loss trick. “It takes 15 minutes for your brain to realize that you’re full,” he explains. “To give your mind time to catch up to your mouth, simply switch your fork to non-dominate hand. It may be frustrating, but it’s a simple and unnoticeable way to curb overeating and lose weight.” Find out more of Cardiello’s and other experts’ tips with these 25 Easy (and Cheap!) Ways to Lose 5 Pounds.
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The older, wiser, less-bendy sister of yoga, meditation is an amazing activity that people can reap major rewards from. Studies show that people who regularly practice mindfulness meditation have more activity in their left prefrontal cortexes, which makes you calm and happy. Plus, a 2014 study found that individuals who meditate are less likely to overeat or give in to emotional eating. To get started, unroll a yoga mat or sit on a carpet in a sunny room (east-facing if possible) and take five uninterrupted minutes thinking about something that you’re grateful for. You’re supposed to lose a few LBs, but even if you don’t, we guarantee you’ll still be glad you made meditation part of your life.
"The main culprit that slows metabolism and often leads to yo-yo dieting is what I call shrinking muscle syndrome," says Caroline Apovian, MD, director of the Nutrition and Weight Management Center at Boston Medical Center and the author of The Overnight Diet: The Proven Plan for Fast and Permanent Weight Loss. Starting at age 30, most people begin to lose about half a pound of the metabolism-revving tissue each year. Poof! Gone, just like that. And at age 50, the rate doubles. "The average sedentary woman may have lost nearly 15 pounds of muscle by the time she reaches her late 50s, a change that could cause her to gain nearly the same amount in body fat," says Wayne Westcott, PhD, a Prevention advisory board member and the director of fitness research at Quincy College in Massachusetts.