Sedentarism and lifestyle in western societies is one of the main causes of overweight and obesity. If we add to that a bad diet, we have a cocktail that is not really good for your health.
And it is that the change of life habits linked to the “industrial revolution” first and to the “technological revolution” second, has led many individuals to have a sedentary job, which affects their health and their well-being in general.
The problems of sedentary work
The physical and psychological benefits of exercise and physical activity are numerous, but there are many people who do not exercise and also have worrisome sedentary habits. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), a sedentary lifestyle is one of the four factors most at risk of death. This same body declares that between 1980 and 2008, obesity rates around the world doubled due to this factor.
In Europe, the European Heart Network (EHN) has compiled a list of countries with the highest rates of sedentary lifestyle, and Spain is in fourth place with 42% of the population not exercising. People with sedentary work (for example, office work) spend 40 hours per week in front of the computer. But then they go home and spend their free time plugging in the tablet, watching TV, etc.
These behaviors and habits have negative consequences such as diabetes, heart problems, back pain, vision problems or being overweight and obesity.
How to lose weight while exercising
Fortunately, to avoid being overweight (and other health problems), it is possible to modify a number of habits that minimize the negative impact of sedentary-type work.
So, if you are spending long hours sitting at work and want to keep weight off and avoid fat accumulation, you can follow these tips.
1. Increase your NEAT
One of the best ways to lose weight is to speed up your metabolism. This does not mean exercising alone, which accounts for 15-30% of total calorie expenditure. But basal metabolism, which is the calories consumed while at rest (because the body needs energy to perform essential metabolic functions, such as breathing), accounts for 50-70% of our calorie expenditure.
One of the best ways to increase BMR is through NEAT (Activity-Free Thermogenesis), which are simply the daily activities we do that affect the amount of calories we burn. For example, climbing stairs or walking to work. Therefore, if your office is on the sixth floor, do not use the elevator. Plus, if you can skip the car and cycle to work, you’ll increase your NEAT and therefore your BMR and calorie burning.
2. Exercise at high intensity
As mentioned in the previous point, exercise represents 15 to 30% of the total calorie expenditure. However, not all forms of exercise help us consume calories in the same way. Strength training helps build muscle, which means the more muscle mass, the more calories burned while at rest.
In addition, intensity training also promotes fat burning after exercise, so that, after training we continued to burn calories for the next 24 hours. This means that while we are working sedentarily, our body takes the opportunity to recover, repair muscle tissue and burn calories.
3. Eat fatty foods
To lose weight, you don’t have to live in “fasting mode” or eat only salads. Thermogenesis, the caloric energy we use when we digest food, accounts for 10-15% of total calorie expenditure and helps us burn fat. The body needs to be well nourished because physical activity or work requires that we have enough energy to accomplish our tasks.
for that it’s good to eat natural foods that help us be more satisfiedThey speed up the metabolism and allow us to burn fat for various reasons.
- If you want to know what these foods are, you can read our article: “24 fatty (and very healthy) creams”
4. Do not consume sugary drinks
If there are foods that burn fat, there are also foods that are just the opposite, and sugary drinks are an example.
These types of drinks provide unnecessary calories and also cause an increase in the glycemic index, causing something called hyperglycemia. increased blood sugar. It makes us need food more when we spend time carving, and prompts us to continue to eat foods high in sugar and fat.
5. Bring food home
A good way to avoid overeating is to bring food home.. If we go to a restaurant for lunch with colleagues, we may be exceeding the required daily calories. In addition, we run the risk of having a dessert which will generally provide extra calories.
If you bring a tupperware to work, you can carefully select what to eat. If you don’t want to gain weight, maybe choose healthier foods.
6. Eat five times a day
One of the keys to increasing thermogenesis is eating five meals a day, This allows you not to accumulate excessive calories in a few meals. By eating five times a day, the body will spend more time digesting food and therefore increase calorie expenditure. This doesn’t mean you have to eat five big meals, but you have to divide a day’s calories into 5 meals.
Breakfast has been shown to be essential for burning calories throughout the day, so skipping it is not a good alternative. If you want some healthy snack ideas, you can read our article: “7 Healthy Snacks (Very Easy to Prepare)”