12 ways to help you lose weight

With these 12 diet and exercise tips, you can get off to the best possible start on the NHS weight loss plan.

1. Do not skip breakfast:

You won’t lose weight by skipping breakfast. You might not get enough of some important nutrients, and you might snack more during the day because you feel hungry.

2. Eat regular meals:

Eating at the same times every day helps you burn calories faster. It also makes you less likely to want to snack on high-fat and high-sugar foods.

Learn more about eating well.

3. Eat lots of fruit and vegetables:

Fruits and vegetables are low in calories and fat and high in fibre, which are three things you need to lose weight. There are also lots of vitamins and minerals in them.

Find out more about getting your 5 A Day.

4. Get more active:

To lose weight and keep it off, you need to be active. Exercise is good for your health and can help you burn off extra calories that you can’t lose through diet alone.

Find something you like to do and can fit into your schedule.

5. Get lots of water:

People sometimes mix up hunger and thirst. You might end up eating more calories when all you need is a glass of water.

Read more about how water is an important part of a healthy diet.

6. Eat foods high in fibre:

Foods with a lot of fibre can help you feel full longer, which is great if you are trying to lose weight. Fibre is only found in plant-based foods, like fruit and vegetables, oats, whole-grain bread, brown rice and pasta, beans, peas, and lentils.

7. Read labels on food:

If you know how to read food labels, you can choose foods that are healthier for you. Use the number of calories to figure out how much of your daily calorie limit a certain food takes up.

Read more about how to read food labels.

8. Use a small plate:

You might eat less if you use smaller plates. By using smaller plates and bowls, you may be able to gradually get used to eating smaller portions without going hungry. It takes about 20 minutes for the stomach to tell the brain it’s full, so eat slowly and stop eating before you feel full.

9. Do not ban foods :

Do not ban any foods from your weight loss plan, especially the ones you like. Banning foods will only make you crave them more. There’s no reason you cannot enjoy the occasional treat as long as you stay within your daily calorie allowance.

10. Do not stock junk food :

To avoid temptation, do not stock junk food – such as chocolate, biscuits, crisps and sweet fizzy drinks – at home. Instead, opt for healthy snacks, such as fruit, unsalted rice cakes, oat cakes, unsalted or unsweetened popcorn, and fruit juice.

11. Cut down on alcohol :

A standard glass of wine can contain as many calories as a piece of chocolate. Over time, drinking too much can easily contribute to weight gain.

Find out more about the calories in alcohol

12. Plan your meals :

Try to plan your breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks for the week, making sure you stick to your calorie allowance. You may find it helpful to make a weekly shopping list.

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