How to lose a stone and keep it off for good

Tired of dropping weight, only to pile it back on again? Read our weight loss tips for advice on how to shed those pounds once and for all.

Weight loss tips
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Tired of dropping weight, only to pile it back on again? Read our weight loss tips for advice on how to shed those pounds once and for all.

Figuring out how to lose weight isn’t always easy. But even once the weight is off, it often feels impossible to maintain.

Whether you've managed to lose a stone, or just a few pounds - only 20 per cent of dieters keep the weight off. Around 80 per cent gaining most, all or more of it back again.

‘The trouble with diets that work fast is they have a start and an end point,’ says celebrity trainer James Duigan, who works with models Rosie Huntington-Whiteley and Elle Macpherson.

‘Once you’ve lost the weight it’s tempting to go back to old habits, which will pile it back on,’ added James.

These weight loss tips from James will help you retrain your taste buds and your metabolism so that you can maintain the weight that you have tried so hard to get to.

1. Don’t use the word ‘diet’

weight loss tips

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‘Change the way you think about food,’ says James. ‘Eat better food the majority of the time and it’ll make you look and feel amazing.

‘The best diets are the ones you can stay on. So don’t follow ones that cut out food groups or insist on counting calories.

‘Instead, get into the habit of eating wholesome foods like lean protein, leafy greens and other vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds.’

2. Cheat days are okay

weight loss tips

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‘If you try to be 100 per cent good 100 per cent of time you’ll fail,’ warns James.

‘Allow yourself the odd cheat meal once or twice a week and you’re more likely to be good the rest of the time.’

Definitely one of the weight loss tips we can get on board with...

3. Lose weight slowly

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Any extreme diet that involves quick weight loss will result in the pounds quickly returning.

‘Don’t be tempted by juice diets or fasts,’ says James. ‘You’ll lose weight initially, but this isn’t ever sustainable.

‘Slow and steady is the key. Do this and studies show you’re much more likely to keep the weight off.

‘You’ll also be losing fat, not just water or muscle,’ adds James.

Aim to lose one or two pounds a week. You may lose more at first, but it should slow down after that.

4. Go for the high fat diet

weight loss tips

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‘Many people cut out fat when dieting, but this is a mistake,’ warns James. ‘A low-fat diet makes you crave sugar and leaves you tired, irritable and lacking in concentration.

‘We need healthy fats in our diet to keep us alert, energised and slim. Studies show that good fats help our body burn fat more efficiently.’

So regularly tuck into avocados, nuts, seeds, oils and plenty of oily fish.

5. Avoid sugar

weight loss tips

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‘Sugar converts to fat in the body quicker than fat,’ says James.

‘Many dieters who are wondering how to quit sugar rely on fat-free sweets, diet drinks and low-fat yogurts. These are bursting with sugar, which leaches vitamins and minerals from your body, leaving you feeling tired and craving more sugar.’

Cut it out and eat more eggs, wholegrains, asparagus and nuts – all good sources of chromium that reduces cravings.

Fancy something sweet? ‘Try full-fat Greek-style yogurt with a handful of berries,’ advises James.

Need some more guidance on weight loss tips and what to eat? Try out James’s seven-day healthy eating plan to start you off on the right track and get you into the habit of eating well without dieting.

Seven-day healthy eating plan

weight loss tips

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Healthy eating plan: Day one

Breakfast: Scrambled egg, smoked salmon and a cup of spinach

Lunch: A grilled chicken breast with a salad of mixed leaves, red peppers, green beans, broccoli, dash of olive oil/lemon juice

Snack: 4-6 almonds

Dinner: 100g beef fillet with steamed broccoli and spinach and 1⁄4 of an avocado

Snack: A few handfuls of cashew nuts

Healthy eating plan: Day two

Breakfast: 100g smoked salmon with chopped cucumber

Lunch: 100g sliced turkey breast, chopped tomato, cucumber, spinach leaves, 1⁄4 of an avocado, olive oil

Snack: 75g chicken breast with mixed raw vegetables

Dinner: A grilled cod fillet served with steamed green beans

Snack: Pumpkin seeds

Healthy eating plan: Day three

Breakfast: Some green beans with 1⁄4 avocado and 100g of sliced chicken

Lunch: A 2-egg omelette made with spinach and a slice of turkey, with a small green salad

Snack: 50g chicken breast, lightly fried

Dinner: Grilled lamb chops with steamed spinach, broccoli and red peppers

Snack: 5 Brazil nuts

Healthy eating plan: Day four

Breakfast: 100g turkey with grilled mixed vegetables

Lunch: A mackerel salad including tomato, baby spinach and green beans, drizzled with olive oil

Snack: 50g chicken and a small handful of almonds

Dinner: A chicken breast with steamed courgettes

Snack: Chopped veg, dollop of hummus

Healthy eating plan: Day five

Breakfast: 2 boiled eggs with red peppers and a 1⁄4 avocado

Lunch: Pan-fried prawns (100g) with sautéed vegetables

Snack: 100g turkey with two oatcakes

Dinner: 1 chicken breast stir-fried with vegetables

Snack: 50g chicken and a small handful of sunflower seeds

Healthy eating plan: Day six

Breakfast: Scrambled eggs with spinach and a slice of turkey

Lunch: 1 beef burger (no bun) with pan- fried mushrooms, onions and grilled tomato, side salad

Snack: Chopped veg with hummus

Dinner: Baked salmon fillet (add dill, garlic and paprika, wrap in foil) steamed broccoli and cauliflower

Snack: 5 Brazil nuts

Healthy eating plan: Day seven

Breakfast: 50g of smoked salmon with a wedge of lemon and a poached egg

Lunch: 100g roast chicken with a large mixed salad

Snack: 50g sliced turkey with two thick slices of avocado

Dinner: 100g rump steak with peppers, green beans and broccoli

Snack: 4-6 Almonds

The article was originally published in Woman's Own

During her four years at TI MEDIA, Eleanor has worked on various titles, including Woman & Home, Feel Good You, Woman’s Own and Powder, covering beauty, health, nutrition and wellbeing topics. Since graduating from the University of the Arts London in Fashion Journalism, she ventured down the beauty and health path and has worked across digital, social media, video and print, and was highly commended at BSME Talent Awards in 2017. From acne to eczema, she can talk endlessly about skin conditions and has jumped in -180C ice chambers, eaten just salmon for a week straight and tried pore-suction facials in the quest for well-behaved skin. She has also written about sleep, hormones and gut health amongst the latest wellbeing and self care trends. When Eleanor’s not working, you’ll often find her on a run in London or her hometown of Brighton, where she did her first marathon – but was beaten to the finish line by Scooby Doo. Post-run, she’ll most likely be settling down to watch a documentary with a spoon and nut butter jar in hand. Follow her on Instagram @eleanorvousden.