So You Want to Lose Weight?

We’ve been there; in fact, just about everyone has been at the point in life: you’ve tried everything you can, every pill, regime, deprivation; you’ve considered moving to an island bereft of a food-filled refrigerator–but you can’t lose weight. Millions of people just like you scour the web daily to find the best way to lose weight, or at least how to control your appetite. It’s a good thing you landed here, because I’m going to talk about what has worked for me and for thousands just like you. It’s not a video or a boot camp; in fact, it’s just one of a nature’s ingredients that has been eluding us for far too long.

Meet Garcinia Cambogia

Have you heard of Garcinia Cambogia yet? If not, I’m surprised. Years ago, the superfruit hit the media like a tidal wave, with anyone from celebrities to stay-at-home moms touting the unbelievable power of Garcinia. While I won’t mention names, the moment one certain T.V. star began introducing it to the media, people flocked to get their hands on Garcinia. They began taking it in pill form, little by little, with thousands upon thousands experiencing the best appetite control they had ever felt: no appetite, no craving for treats all day. They finally got the body they wanted, just like you, I, and just about everyone we know.
The most wanted thing is the world is simply what you cannot have.
But then, as if overnight, the Garcinia Cambogia craze died out like an ember on a windy night.

Taking Garcinia the Right Way

You might be wondering: Why did it die out all of a sudden? It’s simple: people weren’t taking enough Garcinia Cambogia. You see, people don’t take Garcinia Cambogia for the fruit itself: in fact, you don’t see or read about people actually eating the fruit. (Hint: it doesn’t taste that great when eaten directly). Garcinia is sought for its extract called Hydroxycitric Acid, or HCA. You might have seen a product advertising “Garcinia Cambogia: 90% HCA” or “80% HCA.” Don’t believe them, because you’re being scammed. When taking Garcinia Cambogia the right way, the maximum HCA you want is 60%, because when you take extracts that are greater than that, the composition of the powder becomes unstable, and you won’t experience the full appetite-controlling effect that the superfruit is known and sought for. Read about other natural ingredients like this.

How Much Garcinia Do I Need?

Most pills of Garcinia Cambogia that are on the market have anywhere from 400-800mg of Garcinia Cambogia (if it’s even 60% HCA). You need at least 3000mg (3 grams) of Garcinia to take control of your appetite and help you lose weight. Let’s do the math:
  • If on average each pill contains 500mg
  • You need at least 3000mg
  • You need to swallow 5 pills per day. Ouch.
See, the math isn’t hard; and the science is in from a reputable source:
This just in, taking several pills for appetite control sucks.

Where do I find it?

If you’re looking for a good source, you can find some here in powder-drink form. This way you can simply pour the fitness mix into your water bottle, shake it up, and kill your appetite with natural Garcinia Cambogia on the go. Otherwise, there is a wide selection of Garcinia Cambogia pills on the web, from various manufacturers, Amazon, or sole proprietor websites. There, however, you won’t know the quality of Garcinia Cambogia you’re ingesting, and you risk paying a high price for something that doesn’t work–at all. But hey, if you’re into that… Good luck on your Garcinia Cambogia quest!

How Not to Lose Weight [New Year’s Resolution]

Disclaimer: This article may hurt your feelings, and that’s okay. Let me be brutally honest: You’re not going to lose weight in the new year if you’re betting on your New Year’s Resolution. It’s just won’t happen that way. There’s a good chance you will be setting some goals this year; and there’s a pretty good chance that goal might find its place vocalized on the social web. That means your friends and family will see the decision you’ve made to do ‘x’ this year. That also means this New Year’s Resolution of yours is backed by a legion of accountability partners–everyone who has seen your status or gleaned it from your lips is your accountability partner whether you asked them to be or not. But you won’t lose weight, because losing weight and hitting your health goals at the dawn of a new year is hard, and I don’t think you’re equipped to do it.

So prove me wrong

Most people this year won’t do a damn thing about their resolutions. Pardon my coarseness, but it’s true. You don’t have to believe me; you can believe the cadre of companies and celebrities that fan the flame for resolutions on Twitter: Tweets to lose weight in 2018 Now these are just the top two results, but you can see shortly before the New Year, everyone is hopping on the train. In the mess of them all, surely one of the most legendary goals is to “lose weight.” Others opt for doing a digital detox, some for finding their loved ones, and others pursuing health altogether. The question clearly isn’t “should I or will I have a New Year’s Resolution to lose weight,” but rather…
Why is this the year I lose weight?
Why will you achieve your goals this year and not last year? What is so different about 2018 that will make you suddenly successful? I believe in you, so let’s sift through a couple “not-to’s” when it comes to losing weight, because setting the resolution alone won’t do a damn thing.

1. Don’t tell anyone about your fantasy

I don’t say this because your opinion doesn’t matter: it kind of does. I say this because I worry you’re doing it to get likes on a status, or so that–if you fail–you at least would have announced your weight loss goals. Social media and weight loss Nobody has to know your goal, because the only person that needs to know it is you: not your family, your friends, or anyone who might see a New Year’s Resolution status. Let them care about the social glamor while you focus on your goals. Don’t let social media be your peril. If you want to lose weight, you know what to do it and mostly how to do it. Let your motivation and desire to change be your fuel. Other people won’t lose weight for you: that’s on you.

2. Stop idolizing food

When people look at a culture from the outside in, they look at the most rampant, widespread patterns of the people across the giant spectrum of behaviors. If you’re foreign to North America, you’ve seen it too. It’s called gluttony, and it’s glossed over as a petty sin, as it were. You will never lose weight if you can’t get over your fascination with food. It doesn’t matter if you take a weight loss stick every morning to curb your appetite, your love for food has to die this year for you to lose weight for good.

3. Learn the art of addition

Did you know little things add up? Just like the wrinkles on your face with age and the fat on your body from extra calories, good patterns add up too. Those hasty ten jumping jacks or push-ups; the walk around the office on break; the extra two glasses of water you drink per day: all of that adds up, and in the long run it’s going to demolish your body fat.
Good habits don’t just add up: they begin to multiply.

4. Be your own harshest critic

I believe strongly in not giving yourself any room to complain or make excuses. You can make excuses if you want, but you can also gain weight this year. That’s your choice. If you want to lose weight this new year, stop giving yourself breaks or cheat days. You’re just making it worse. Winners don’t take breaks; they don’t get cheat days; they don’t get to tell success to wait for them while they catch a breath. You have to be the meter for your success, and if that means a slow-and-steady climb up the hill, great! But if you’re one to lie down on the lea when the climb gets too steep and you begin to sweat, just roll back down. You won’t make it.

5. Refuse to be a hypocrite this year

Before you know it, 2019 is coming. Do you know what that means? Everyone will ask you whether you succeeded or failed in your weight loss resolution; and chances are, if they don’t, they likely don’t bring it up because they didn’t meet theirs either. I want you to tell them you beat the hell out of your New Year’s Resolution–that you lost all the weight and more that you planned to, and you’re now an impregnable health machine and will never gain weight again. But will that happen this year? Don’t relegate your goal to next year. Do it this year.
The hindrance to your New Year’s weight loss resolution is no other than the person in the mirror.

15 Actionable Tips to Control Your Appetite

You can actually control your appetite. It’s definitely possible, but it’s not easy. There will be hurdles, failures, relapses–but there will also be victories. And if you don’t lose heart, you’ll be able to look, feel, and act like you’ve always wanted to. You don’t have to be a slave to your appetite. Follow these fifteen (15) actionable tips to control your appetite; and if you forget them, just come back and read it again. Easy… (the reading part)!

1. Consider why you eat

Much of the time, we eat without thinking. It becomes second nature, like checking our cellphone upon waking up or understanding advertisement cues on television. Sometimes we just eat.

We’re bored; we’re tired; we’re nervous; we saw an ad somewhere–or it’s just nearing the time of day that we usually eat. Regardless what caused it, try to be conscientious of when and why you’re eating: even if it’s just a snack. You might be able to relate your hunger cues to other factors, like a dog trained to salivate at the ring of a bell.

2. Return to the basics

We get so accustomed to hearing the “top, new Hollywood appetite suppressing” tips that we forget there are basic rules to follow, ones we learned when we were young. Consider the food pyramid, the geometric guidelines for the healthy amount of food groups.

It’s always easy to take a step back and ask yourself, “Am I eating too much dairy? What about too many grains? Do I need more vegetables?” Yes, yes you do.

The food pyramid takes you back to the basics of appetite control
Image: MyPyramid, U.S Department of Agriculture

3. Drink water and more water

When it comes to taking control of your appetite, you always want to be sure you’re getting enough water. While coffee, tea, milk, and even watermelon are sources of water, you likely won’t get enough in your system by those alone.

Drinking water before or at the onset of a craving allows you to determine whether you really are hungry or you were just thirsty. You were probably just thirsty.

4. Don’t skip breakfast

Having a healthy, considerable but not oversized breakfasts kicks your metabolism into gear early in the morning. Research has shown that missing breakfast causes “metabolic and hormonal differences in response to food” that was consumed later in the day, which means your body may compensate for a lack and you may eat more. Uh oh.

Macadamia nut is an excellent source of protein

Also, if trying to choose a light breakfast meal, make sure you choose protein. The protein versus other food groups like cereals, oats, and simple carbohydrates will make you feel full immediately, but the effect will taper off soon and you’ll have a hunger ravenous for two buffets by lunch.

5. Look at the label

Do you ever have a mouthful of some yummy food, look down, and realize that you just ate your day’s worth in calories? Same. Don’t let yourself unknowingly deplete your caloric quota for the day: look at what you’re consuming. Is that snack you want to eat going to be a sizable crater on your daily values? Choose an alternative.

Look at the amount of calories in an item, then scan the rest of the label. If the snack is anything over 100-200 calories, you should probably ditch it (unless you’re very active).

Take our weight loss fitness stick, for example. It only has 15 calories, and there’s only one serving: there are no calories hiding from you. But when looking at food labels, always check the amount of servings. You may be enjoying that 90 calorie snack, only until you realize that the package you ate was actually 3 servings worth (270). Ouch.

Allura Trim weight loss 15 calories

6. Get up (not the movie)

Okay, don’t cry. Hold on. The movie was adorably sad–yes. But do you know what the old man did? He got up! Even at his old age, he adventured and tossed the idea of an aged, sedentary lifestyle in the trash.

This part–the correlation between appetite and physical activity–is complex. In fact, many scientists disagree about the conclusion. Some say your body’s appetite hormones, ghrelin, the appetite increaser, and leptin, the appetite suppressor, are stimulated by exercises; others dismiss the idea.

Bottom line: exercise is healthy for you whether or not it suppresses your appetite, but doing jumping jacks, push-ups, or walking around the house or office now in then will definitely stimulate your mind and deter you from mindlessly snacking.

7. But don’t get down

This emotive tip for controlling your appetite is actually quite an important one: Don’t beat yourself up if you overeat while sticking to your dietary regime. I mean, if you downed an entire row of Oreos, you might want to repent a little.

You can’t climb to the top of the ladder if you get off it every time you descend a rung. You have to keep going up it, even if you slip and fall down 3 or 4 rungs. If you curbed your appetite successfully for a week, and totally messed up on the weekend, you have to keep going on Monday.

You can’t quit (even though, of all days, Monday is the easiest day to quit).

8. Watch for hunger cues

Our body is like a machine: it remembers our patterns, like the muscle memory a professional MLB player gathers that makes him an incredibly dexterous and explosive asset. Your body will remember–encode–certain behaviors that cue your appetite.

Tame your appetite by watching for what makes you hungry.

TICK. It’s time for you to eat… or is it? Is it “that time of the day that you eat,” which means you must be hungry? Maybe you aren’t really hungry; and maybe just everyone else ate early and you want to fit in.

What triggers your stomach to say, “Hey, I think I’m hungry”? Audit your body’s behavior and look for those moments that you get hungry out of the blue, and then see if any of them are false readings. Maybe you’re hungry, or maybe you just got home from work and opening the fridge is just part of your routine.

9. Eat early, not late

In an earlier blog we gave some hacks to avoid late-night snacking, and talked about how silly the myth is about eating late at night. Now we’re reinforcing it: instead of just shunning late-night snacking, control your appetite earlier in the day by eating your last meal well before bedtime.

When you don’t set a time frame for eating dinner, you remove parameters on meals and snacks. Instead of eating at a static time, you might push back dinner and snack in the mid-afternoon. You’ll end up eating late at night, sleepily snacking and rue it all in the morning.

Your body best operates in routines, and unless you are in control of your appetite, it will control you.

10. Brush your teeth

Have you brushed your teeth today? Don’t answer that unless it’s yes. Brushing your teeth is an excellent way to suppress your cravings immediately. Have you ever tried drinking orange juice right after brushing your teeth? Worst mouth event ever.

We suggest you get in a habit of brushing your teeth immediately after dinner. This prevents you from snacking and from delving into the cupboards late at night when everyone else is asleep… unless you’re stubborn, and you’d rather snack and brush them again. We can’t help stubborns.

11. Drink strategically

Alcohol makes it easy to overeat

“What does drinking have to do with controlling the appetite?”

This special liquid is a conniving joy-giver. It makes you feel good, content, bold, and usually not hungry–until your body reaches that point and says, “Okay, where’s the fridge?” There’s a reason you crave simple carbohydrates when you drink.

Alcohol, when consumed, depletes your glycogen stores (carbohydrates) to metabolize it, so it needs to refill the carbs. The more you drink, the more your body is robbed of stored energy, and the greater the need it will have to fill it.

You have a few options. You can either…

  • Cut out alcohol completely (just kidding)
  • Drink less
  • Eat before you drink

When your glycogen starts to deplete from that wine, beer, or hard stuff, you will have built a barricade against the fickle behavior of your boozy appetite. Having eaten, you won’t have to deal with two appetites (natural appetite + boozy appetite = unmet dietary goals).

12. Shop like a minimalist

Minimalism is the “art or lifestyle of living only with things we need,” and when it comes to shopping for food, it’s a powerful lifestyle to embrace. If you’ve ever gone to the grocery store when you’re hungry, you know the game: your appetite chooses what to buy, not your brain.

It’s crucial you either eat before you shop, or only buy the bare necessities. While buying in bulk will usually get you the deals, if you buy a family size when you just want a bite, you’re giving your appetite a way in: “There’s extra in the house, so I can have a little more.”

13. Find your motivators

Sometimes it takes motivation to do just about anything: go to work, get off the couch, wake up… Choosing to eat healthy and not glut at every moment possible also needs motivation, which is why we recommend you find what or who motivates you to control your appetite.

Find what motivates you to lose weight

Do you have a wedding or grand event coming up? Do you look up to a certain fitness instructor or someone who clearly has his/her appetite under control? Are you tired of the lazy, stuffing, lugubrious feeling after overeating? Whatever is your motivation, cling to it and set it before your eyes at all times.

14. Get accountability partners

Find someone who will walk with you side by side, to fight your appetite and overeating together. There’s nothing quite as powerful as having accountability for the things that you do (or don’t do); and when you’re trying to achieve fitness goals, you want find people who both praise you in victory and encourage you in defeat.

And when you learn how to control your appetite–once you’ve donned the medals and achieved your fitness goal, you can be someone else’s motivation. What a feeling that is when, not if, you get there…

15. Get confident, overly confident

There’s nothing more intimidating than someone who isn’t afraid to speak his/her mind or back down from a challenge. You might think those people have a certain “type of personality” or are just different from you. Maybe, but I think you’re scared.

Don’t be timid to be the best damn you possible: to be confident in the face of failure, to say yes when everyone is saying no, and to keep getting up when the easiest thing to do is lie there and let someone else tame the appetite.

You don’t have to be a slave to your appetite.


Do you have any tips that have helped you control your appetite?

Hacking Halloween: 10 Tips to Avoid the Sweets

I‘ll bet you can already hear it: the sinister laughs of Mr. Skeleton in the howling breeze; the brooding bellows of the lurking Oogie Boogie; and, alas, the harrowing yet mellifluous screams of children as they prepare themselves for the most dastardly, invigorating night of the year. BOO! Halloween is coming. Halloween, as kids know–and parents mostly certainly know–is not just a day. It’s a week; sometimes it is a whole month, because we know when the first leaves fall, grocery stores magically introduce candy onto their shelves.

Candy. Candy everywhere.

This is what we think happens Halloween week:
  • Buy the candy early.
  • Set it on the table and don’t touch it.
  • The kids eat all the candy and there’s none left for us to eat.
  • SUCCESS.
But what actually happens…
  • We buy more candy than kids even exist in a 10-mile radius–just in case we run out.
  • We want the deal, so we buy candy a week early.
  • We put the candy in the spooky bowl by the front door… to be, like, prepared.
  • The night before Halloween: WHO ATE ALL THE CANDY?
Halloween finally ends, and though the trick-or-treaters had pillowcases filled with candy, you won: you ate the most. And your reward is… BOO! A wrenching stomach pain and an extra few pounds on your stomach.

Healthy Tips for Sugary Lips

Avoiding sweets on Halloween is probably the hardest thing to do in the world, aside from plugging in a USB flash drive correctly the first time. (Why does it always take three times to plug it in when the chances are 50/50?) Follow these tips to be healthy this Halloween.

Don’t open the candy early

It’s tempting to open up the bag of candy to add it to your bowl so you can once and for all finish your Halloween decorations. But really… there’s no need to do that. Don’t make it easy to eat candy. Ever.

Place it outside

Whether or not you waited until Halloween night to let the candy out the bags… literally, don’t let that bowl of filled-to-the-brim candy sit inside your house.* Place it outside with a sign (“2 pieces each… or else”) to avoid eating it yourself.

Set aside your limit

Set aside a small number of candies or chocolates that you’re allowed to eat so you don’t bury your face in the bowl. My rule is one handful… so I find the largest hands in the neighborhood and ask for a favor.

Count the wrappers

This may seem silly, but nothing is more haunting than lifeless wrappers who once housed calories now sitting there beside you on the couch, watching you eat “just one more.” Count them. Assemble them by the unwrapped candy and let them glare at you until you’re satisfied. Throwing the wrappers away piece-by-piece is a cop-out.

Quarantine the binge

Okay, so you’re going to binge. You’ve decided that in advance. If you’re really going to binge on that Halloween candy, save the date. Save the time. Use a countdown timer like that of New Year’s Eve and savor the moment. But once that time is up… Walk away from the candy. Run if you have to.

Eat before you treat

Whether you’re encamped in the house or out with the kids knocking on strangers’ doors, eat before you treat; and eat a well-balanced meal, particularly one with few carbohydrates and plenty of greens. It’s like going grocery shopping on an empty stomach: you never make the good decisions then.

Choose smaller bags

Is using pillowcases as a candy container passe? Are those days over? They probably should be. We recommend you opt for something closer to a gift bag or a grocery bag instead of an entire bed sheet–that way when you reach your bag’s limit, you have to return from trick-or-treating: you have no more room for candy!

Barter

Usually, parents have better control over their sweets intake than kids do. If you find your kids or grandkids consuming too much sugar on Halloween night, barter with them. Offer them the perk of staying up late or going on a special trip in exchange for some of their candy. You can even trade them a healthy meal for some of their candy so they make better decisions (just don’t, ya know, eat the candy yourself).

Walk, don’t drive

You may live far from the popular trick-or-treating neighborhoods, but use that time to enjoy the night. Walk yourself, your kids, and whomever else to the scene. Take the long route, not just the one strip of houses that offer the full-size candy bars. You’ll get far more exercise on Halloween night than you think!

Get energy from a good source

It’s a big night full of crazy kids, wildly expensive costumes (because you asked), and extended curfews. You’re going to need energy… just don’t get it from the candy. For clean, long-lasting energy, take a natural energy booster before you begin the madness; and if you’re really trying to fend off the sweets, combine energy and appetite control in a weight loss stick to brave the night. Oh… and #11: Brush your teeth on Halloween night.
*If you place your candy outside, you risk little monsters stealing the entire bowl of candy. You were warned.