The Blue Zones Diet is based on the nine lessons learned by author Dan Buettner’s travels of the world. Buettner sought out individuals from various cultures and lifestyles that maintained their health into their 90s and even 100s. Healthy eating and exercising are essential to this diet and below are recommendations for implementing these suggestions by Buettner to help you lose weight. According to the Blue Zones diet, if you lose just 10% of your body weight, then you will lower your blood pressure, cholesterol and risk of heart disease.
The United States Department of Agriculture recommends that individuals exercise 30 minutes a day most days. The Blue Zones diet recommends increasing that to 60 minutes a day, at least five days a week, of moderate level exercise. The Blue Zones diet recommends yoga, cardiovascular and strength training exercise. These will help you lose weight because cardiovascular exercise forces you to increase your heart rate and utilize extra oxygen. These will cause your body to burn calories. By strength training, you will increase your body’s lean muscle mass. Per pound, muscle burns more calories than fat. You will burn more calories a day, even when you are sleeping, because of strength training. Yoga helps increase flexibility and increases muscle mass. Workout suggestions include walking, running, biking, gardening and doing yoga twice a week.
Eating Fewer Calories
The Blue Zones diet recommends eating 20% fewer calories a day than you normally would. Buettner states that most people have a calorie set point, which is the number of calories most people can consume each day without gaining weight. When people constantly eat slightly beyond this set point, they end up gaining weight. The alternative, if dieters eat slightly below this set point, then they will lose weight. Instead of eating until you are full, Buettner advises that you eat until you are no longer full. Methods to help you eat fewer calories and therefore lose weight supported by the Blue Zones Diet include:
- Putting away extra portions of food before you begin to eat. This will prevent you from eating second helpings.
- Increase the volume of your food with low calorie vegetables. This will help you feel fuller sooner and eat fewer calories overall.
- Eat off smaller plates. By eating off a small plate, you will consume fewer calories without thinking about it.
- Make snacking a hassle by hiding temptations out of sight.
- Eat slowly. By eating slower, dieters are able to realize when they are no longer hungry sooner.
- Limit meat intake to twice a week. Servings of meat should be no more than 3 to 4 ounces.
- Create meals that feature tofu, beans and whole grains as the centerpiece. These are low calorie foods that provide numerous nutrients. Eating a diet rich in these foods will make you feel full sooner so you avoid overeating.
Above are numerous recommendations from the Blue Zones Diet that will help you lose weight. The aim of this diet is for you to implement lifestyle changes. Buettner states that if you follow these suggestions, you will be able to lose weight and maintain the weight loss long term.