Weight gain is one of the most common things that comes with aging, and most people gain around 1 to 2 pounds every year. However, while putting on a bit of weight is natural and healthy, poor diet and lack of physical activity can result in obesity among seniors. According to the CDC, 41.5% of adults aged 60 and older are obese. Obesity increases the risk of various diseases, including heart disease, diabetes, and certain types of cancer, which is why having a healthy lifestyle is so important once you hit your golden years. Exercise, eating a balanced diet, and getting enough sleep can help adults who are aged 60 and older to lose weight. But if you want to try other ways to shed the pounds, here are some safe and effective weight loss hacks that you should know.
Counter Food Cravings with the Right Scents
Older adults who need to gain weight are sometimes advised to use essential oils to boost their appetite. Some of these oils include lavender, peppermint, bergamot, and sweet orange as they promote good digestion, relieve nausea, and boost mood, all of which can help to indirectly improve appetite. However, if you have a tendency to overeat and your goal is to lose weight, then steer clear of these oils and make sure to only use scented products that won’t cause you to eat more than you should.
Evidence shows that certain scents can block hunger and counter food cravings. One of these is olive oil. Though it’s a popular ingredient in many dishes, lighting an olive oil scented candle can provide a feeling of fullness once you smell it. Meanwhile, if you’ve got a sweet tooth, combining green apple and banana scented candles can help to curb sugar cravings. Consider having a few of these candles in your home and light them whenever you have the urge to snack on unhealthy foods.
Use a Smaller Plate
If you can’t seem to fill full after finishing a meal, try replacing your plate with a smaller one. Switching to an 8-inch plate and filling it up can condition your mind into thinking that you’re eating a full plate of food, but by doing so, you’re actually cutting down the amount of food that you normally consume. You should also be strategic when filling up your plate. For weight loss, aim to fill half of your plate with non-starchy vegetables, then the rest should be for lean protein such as salmon, chicken breast, or a tofu patty, and a bit of starch, such as potatoes, pasta, wheat bread, or brown rice.
Drink Ginger Tea
Several studies show that ginger, which is widely used as a culinary spice, can be beneficial for weight loss. Since it’s completely natural, it’s considered to be a safe weight loss aid for adults 60 years and older. You can add more ginger to your food, but the best way to take it is to turn it into a tea if you’re hoping to lose some weight. Research has shown that those who drank 2 grams of ginger powder mixed with a hot drink at breakfast experienced reduced feelings of hunger. Moreover, the study revealed that ginger tea can increase thermogenesis, which is the body’s ability to produce heat which can help to burn calories.
To make ginger tea, boil a chopped up piece of ginger in water, simmer for 10 minutes, then drink it as it is. You may also add a bit of honey and lemon if you want to counteract the slightly spicy flavor without losing the health benefits of the tea.
Maintaining a healthy weight in your 60s is one of the best ways to stay in peak condition. Consider these smart tips to shed the pounds, and look and feel your best in your senior years.