Sunday, October 30, 2011

How to Break Weight Loss Plateau for Vegetarians by Laura Ng

As an overweight vegetarian who's happily losing weight with a vegetarian weight loss diet, you can't escape the fate of hitting weight loss plateau, that is, you manage to lose 10 or even 40 pounds and you still have more to go, but somehow you got stuck. Your weight just wouldn't budge an ounce. What can you do?

Actually, there's no such thing as weight loss plateau in my opinion. The actual plateau lies in your food choices and your vegetarian lifestyle. Here are the 5 strategies to help you break your "weight loss plateau" and lose weight as a vegetarian. If you apply them correctly with good common sense, you'll slim down all the way till you reach your ideal weight and shape. Let's get started.

1. Include All-Round Nutrients in Your Vegetarian Weight Loss Diet

Imagine every day you eat oatmeal for breakfast, fruit salad for lunch and curried chickpeas for dinner, how many pounds do you expect to lose with that boring diet?

Even if you change the meal plans a bit is not enough. Get creative and start eating more varieties of food. For example, today your breakfast is protein smoothie, tomorrow it becomes oatmeal with raisins, then day after make rainbow salad as breakfast. Same goes for your lunch and dinner. Change your vegetarian meal plan to stimulate the "senses" of your fat-burning system.

Tip: Always include lots of fibrous foods such as vegetables in your meals. Vegetables carry low calorie but yet their high-fiber content will make you feel full easily so you won't get into trouble with binge eating. They help increase your bowel movement for daily detoxifying too. A cleanse body will burn fat efficiently and effectively.

2. Zig-Zag Calorie Vegetarian Meal Plans for Weight Loss

When you keep eating a fixed amount of calories, your body will auto-adjust to burn just that amount, nothing more, nothing less. To overcome this "defect", keep changing the amount of your calorie intake.

Assuming you need about 1800 calories a day. Take it for 2 days, then on day 3 switch to a lower calorie meal, say 1550 calories. And on day 4, go up to 1700 calories for 1 day then drop the calorie again, increase and decrease and so on… you'll burn more body fat over time this way.

Warning: When controlling caloric intake, do not consume less than 85% of your total daily calorie needs as a safety measure. The whole idea is, keep your stomach at a satiety level of 70%. Bottom line - never let your stomach go hungry.

3. Turn On to Interval Training for More Fat Loss

Don't keep to a specific pattern of exercising. Change your workout routine. For example, stop doing the same old brisk-walking every day. Start to do walk-jog-walk-jog to make your metabolism work a bit more. Stop doing fast pushups, start slowing down its pace and you'll raise the intensity level, thus stepping up your metabolic rate further.

Whatever you do with your exercise, inject changes every other day to give your metabolism something new to work with, and you'll break your weight loss plateau with exercise.

4. Split Up Your Vegetarian Weight Loss Meals

Break up the portion size of your main meals into two additional snacks that you can insert in between them, like this: breakfast (7 - 8 A.M.), morning snack (10 - 10:30 A.M.), lunch (12 - 1 P.M.), afternoon snack (3 - 3:30 P.M.) and dinner (6 - 7 P.M.).

This will keep your metabolism at an active level throughout the day. Quit your supper to avoid storing excess calories while you sleep.

5. Never Skip Breakfast

Even if you don't feel hungry in the morning, don't wait until your stomach rumbles then you start taking breakfast. Take your breakfast as early as 7 A.M. for best fat-burning response. Don't think that skipping breakfast will make you lose more fat. You won't. Instead, skipping breakfast will make you absorb more unnecessary calories when you start taking your lunch.

These are the 5 keys to breaking weight loss plateau. Just remember, whatever vegetarian foods you eat and whatever workouts you do, change the routine often, and you'll find that your body becomes very active in burning the excess calories from your fat storage. Once you break your weight loss plateau, don't forget to pass these strategies on to your fellow overweight vegetarians. Enjoy!