11 Habits That Will Help You Lose Kilos And Keep It Off

Drop stubborn weight by following these magical tips

Luke Coutinho, Anushka Shetty Published Jan 31, 2020 00:00:00 IST
11 Habits That Will Help You Lose Kilos And Keep It Off Image used for representative purposes only (All pictures courtesy Indiapicture)

Oxygen—'Vitamin O'

1. Stop right now and observe how you breathe. Are you breathing to your full capacity? Are you breathing from your chest or belly? Your answer will most likely be ‘no’ and you will notice that you are breathing from the chest. The correct way is to belly-breathe: Sit with your back erect. Put your hand on your belly. Now take a deep breath. As you slowly inhale, your belly and hand should rise. As you exhale, your belly and hand should fall back down. Think of your stomach as a balloon that inflates and deflates with your breath.

The more you eat, the deeper you should breathe. When you take in enough ‘vitamin O’, fat is broken down and your intestines absorb all the nutrition from the food you eat. When you breathe correctly while you eat, your body fills up much quicker and you end up eating less than you normally would. So practise this: before you eat anything, sit with your back straight. Take three deep breaths from your belly. Inhale comfortably and make sure you exhale slow and long each time. Between every bite, take one deep breath. End your meal with three deep breaths.

Correct Your Vitamin D3 Levels

2. Almost all of my patients and clients have critically low levels of vitamin D3 when they come for the first consultation. Low D3 levels plague thousands of people across the world. Most of them still consider this vitamin to be necessary for bone strength, but it plays many critical roles in the human body, from immunity to weight loss. Besides playing a crucial role in the establishment and maintenance of calcium in the body, vitamin D also acts as an effective regulator of cell growth and cell differentiation that is specific to cancer.

Low vitamin D3 levels have been linked to diabetes, heart disease, skin health and even multiple sclerosis. You must get your vitamin D3 levels checked every six months. Make sure it gets closer to the higher range of your lab test. Good sources of vitamin D are mushrooms, Brussels sprouts, sprouted mung, fish, egg yolk, low-fat dairy and chicken. Exposure to sunlight is the best way for vitamin D to be synthesized in the body.

Chew Your Way To Weight Loss

dpps_108346776_010220123214.jpgImage: Indiapicture

3. Digestion begins in the mouth. The more you chew your food, the cleaner you keep your intestines, stomach and colon, because the body can quickly cleanse itself when digestion happens the right way. By chewing your food well, you reduce the chances of acidity and heartburn, and end up eating less, because your stomach has sufficient time to send a signal to your brain that you are full. 

So: Less food intake = fewer calories = weight loss.

The next meal you eat, do so really slowly. You will find yourself getting fuller quickly, and then you should stop eating. This will become a habit and you will serve yourself less food and probably lose the excess weight you may be carrying.

The Magic Weight-Loss Tea


4. Add this magic tea to your daily regime and lifestyle. You can use a base of black or green tea, or just make an infusion with water and the following ingredients:

  • 1 square-inch piece of fresh ginger root
  • Squeeze of a lemon
  • 2 cups of water
  • 2–3 peppercorns
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 cardamom pods, crushed
  • 2 cloves

Boil, simmer, reduce to half, strain and serve hot with or without pure honey.

This amazing potion is detoxifying and highly anti-inflammatory, and has the power to rapidly reduce Candida [fungal infection] and yeast infections that inhibit weight loss.

Add Coconut Oil To Coffee

5. When you add a teaspoon of virgin coconut oil to your coffee, you convert this simple beverage into a fat-burning elixir. Coconut oil contains medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs) that boost the body’s metabolism and stimulate effective fat burn. Also, replace white sugar with brown or coconut sugar.

Sweat Your Weight Off


6. When was the last time you worked up a really good sweat? It need not have been during a workout. It could just have been in the sweltering summer heat. No one likes to sweat when dressed up, or headed to office or for a meeting or dinner, but do make sure you incorporate enough activity in your routine so you work up a sweat, as it has some amazing health benefits.

Skin is the largest eliminatory organ in the human body. It consists of trillions of pores that help the body eliminate toxic waste that causes deadly disease, hair loss, organ failure and low immunity, and can considerably slow down weight loss. And did you know that sweat can eliminate more lead than your daily urine output? Even a little sweat is enough for your body to detox. You don’t need to overtrain for that benefit.

Go From Sedentary To Active

7. Working out for one hour every day and then sitting for the rest of the day makes you just four per cent more active than someone who doesn’t work out. Sitting is the new smoking. Most of my clients lost weight by being a little more active during their day. So many of them are business persons, actors and actresses who have no time on many days to squeeze in a full workout and yet lose or easily maintain their weight. Some of the things you can do to be more active are:

  • Take the stairs.
  • Take all phone calls walking or standing.
  • Attend all meetings standing.
  • Get your own tea and coffee.
  • Every hour, get up and stretch, touch your toes or do a plank.
  • Use a wearable [fitness or activity monitoring] device that can track your total activity.
  • Do activities that don’t involve sitting.
  • While watching TV, plank or squat during commercial breaks.
  • Get creative and you’ll find several other opportunities.

The Good Old Plank


8. To tone up and lose weight, I recommend planking every day. Start off with a minimum of 30 seconds and build up to three to four minutes, making sure your form is perfect. This full-body exercise works multiple muscles and can be done anywhere and everywhere. Make sure to incorporate this into your lifestyle. When you get better at the regular plank, move to side planks. This is fantastic for your metabolism too.

Use Triphala Powder


9. Triphala can help you detoxify and facilitate weight loss. This is an amazing natural ayurvedic powder that helps keep the large intestine, small intestine and stomach healthy and clean by flushing out toxins. Triphala also helps boost metabolism, improve immunity, lower cholesterol and prevent microbial infections. The best way to consume this is by mixing one level teaspoon in a glass of warm water before bedtime.

Drink This Cleansing Juice Every Day


10. Carrots are one of the most nutritious vegetables. I use carrot juice for the treatment of almost every disease, from cancer to obesity, because they are rich in vitamin A and beta-carotene, and also very simple to turn into a juice. Although you can eat a carrot raw, it’s easier to digest as a juice.

You should pick fresh carrots and peel them. Juice the carrots with a little bit of freshly cracked black or cayenne pepper and a whole tablespoon of coconut oil or extra-virgin olive oil. This is because the vitamins in carrots are fat-soluble, which means they require fat to be digested and carried to all the cells of the human body.

Eat Dinner Early


11. This is my favourite and one of the most powerful lifestyle changes for weight loss. India eats dinner too late. The heaviest meal in India is usually dinner, understandably so, because after a long day at work, the family likes to sit together and eat their favourite food. But that comes with the consequence of weight gain, acidity and indigestion.

A gap of at least three hours is required between dinner and bedtime. If you can’t eat early, at least eat light. Your body needs more protein and fat at dinner than carbs, because that is what it will use for its functions while you sleep. If you get hungry later, drink vegetable juice or eat some yogurt or home-made popcorn (never microwave popcorn—that’s really bad for you and your weight).


Renowned holistic lifestyle coach and award-winning holistic nutritionist, Luke Coutinho is an adviser and head of integrative lifestyle and nutrition at Pure Nutrition and co-founder of GOQii, a digital healthcare platform. Actor Anushka Shetty has worked extensively in Bollywood, Tamil and Telugu movies and is best known for her work in the Bahubali films.

Excerpted with permission from Penguin Random House India
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