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Family Living Focus: Simple tips to slimmer waists

Everyone knows that eating right and exercising are the keys to weight control. But not everyone knows these tips to help make your efforts pay off fast.

Eat Breakfast. It is true – regular meals and occasional low-cal snacks help prevent the “famine-then-feast” syndrome. For a great start, fill up first thing with high-fiber cereal, whole-grain bread or fresh fruit.

Bite into a Pickle or Lemon. The advantage to biting into a pickle or a lemon is that neither has any calories to speak of, and the sour taste will curb your appetite. If you don’t have either available, then brushing your teeth will have the same effect.

Post a List. Put a list of all the small and large projects you have to do on your refrigerator. Then, whenever you are bored and tempted to snack, tackle an item from your list. It will help you ride out the crave attacks.

Serve a Smaller Portion. Serve yourself half the amount you usually eat if you tend to eat whatever is in front of you. Make less food look like more by using smaller plates.

Exercise in the Morning. After fasting overnight, two-thirds of the calories burned come from stored fat, which contains more calories than carbohydrates the main energy source in the afternoon workouts. Consider exercising in the morning and burn up stored fat.

Keep Calories Burning. Burn up calories with aerobic exercise, like biking, swimming or rowing. The advantage is that a single session burns calories during the workout and for several hours afterward.

Take your Time. It takes about 20 minutes for your brain to receive the signal that you are full. So, gulping food quickly may lead to overeating. Try theses strategies: Set your silverware down between bites. Chew slowly. Savor each flavor and texture. And play soft, soothing background music, which tends to slow the meal.

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If you would like more information on “Simple Tips to a Slimmer Waists” feel free to contact Gail Gilman, Family Life Consultant, M.Ed., C.F.C.S. and Professor Emeritus – University of Minnesota at waldn001@umn.edu. Be sure to watch for more Family Living Focus™ information in next week’s paper.

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