Chocolate, wine and TV sitcoms: New diet guide reveals the most unlikely weight-loss tips
23:02 GMT, 21 March 2012
Women's websites and fitness magazines constantly bombard readers with tips on how to lose weight and keep it off forever but often the advice is intimidating or repetitious.
Which is why Good Morning America and Reader's Digest teamed up to divulge the real secrets to shedding the pounds that they claim the experts never reveal.
In a list that reads more like a pleasure manifesto, tips include eating chocolate, watching sitcoms and drinking red wine before tucking up for a good night's rest of eight and a half hours of sleep.
The secret to weight-loss Dark chocolate can be good for you – in moderation
One of the 13 nuggets of wisdom is the suggestion that eating good fats actually helps reduce tummy flab.
While consumption of bad fats found in highly processed foods and sugary treats will invariably pile on the pounds, monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs) in olive oil, nuts and avocados and polyunsaturated fatty acids in fish oil (PUFAs) raise metabolic rates and burn calories at a higher level.
The added benefit to choosing these types of foods is that they fill a person up quicker so a little goes a long way.
Snacking on a piece of dark chocolate is also an effective way to fight fat according to Reader's Digest.
Chocolate that contains more cocoa than sugar has antioxidants that when tested on diabetic mice in a 2001 Journal of Nutrition study, reduced degeneration of aortic arteries and stifled fat deposits.
In Tennessee meanwhile, research has shown that sufferers of lactose intolerance who also fall victim to calcium deficiency, store more fat and have less control over their appetite.
Wine – in moderation – can act as a fat
releasing agent so a glass in the evening can actually aid weight loss
In another surprising revelation, the report claims that wine in moderation can also act as a fat releasing agent, so one small glass of red in the evening can have beneficial results for weight loss.
And switching out refined sugar for honey and desert for a tea that mimics the sweet taste of a piece of pie, will both contribute towards a lower calorific intake.
Watching what you eat has long been
advocated as a steady, well-paced process but research from the
University of Florida found that a rapid and significant weight drop at
the beginning of a diet resulted in nearly every case in the long term
success of keeping trim.
course, no weight loss advice would forget the importance of exercise
but GMA and Reader's Digest have what they deem an unexpected
pounding the treadmill for hours at a time, interval training they say,
is far more effective, giving the body a shock.
danger of long, drawn-out cardio sessions, they report, is the
misconception that they allow for an unrestricted diet which more often
than not upsets the balance and leads to weight gain.
The sitcom diet A TV show that makes us laugh for half an hour is not only a stress reliever but can burn as many calories as a short gym session
Mayo Clinic studies show that it isn't just workout fans who burn
calories but also fidgety people who tend to be leaner and skinnier.
Constant movement throughout the day, whether at a desk or on the go, the report reveals, burns 350 calories of more daily, so wiggling, flexing and even dancing a little while labouring over that evening meal all helps.
Additionally, when sitting at a desk, efforts made to swap brain power for will power will aid with weight loss.
Brain neurons use glucose for fuel which make it tempting to reach for the a sugary refill but it is far more sensible to opt for fiber or
protein if you can just resist the urge.
Study participants who slept for eight-and-a-half hours a night lost 50 per cent more weight than those who slept less
When you get home, flopping onto the sofa to watch a bit of TV is not as frowned upon as health blogs may have us believe either.
In fact, a good sitcom that makes us laugh for half an hour is not only an effective stress reliever but can burn as many calories as a short gym session.
Most unexpected perhaps are the findings in a 2011 study from the College of Public Health at Ohio State University that suggested exposure to air pollution induced insulin resistance, reduced glucose tolerance, and increased inflammation, all linked to diabetes.
So a good air filter could be the key, say Reader's Digest and Good Morning American team.
Finally, what everyone wants to hear: a good night's sleep is crucial to weight loss according to studies that revealed subjects who slept for eight and a half hours a night lost 50 per cent more weight than those who slept less.
After an exhausting list of dos and don't, that could perhaps be the best news of all.