We’re all familiar with those crazy diets that claim to show you how to lose weight fast, but is the answer easier than you might think?

With spring in full swing, many of us are already thinking about our summer holiday and getting fit in preparation. But with work, friends, travelling and daily tasks, it can be difficult to find the time.

Here are just a few little changes that can make all the difference without you having to resort to crazy diets.

Plan your meals ahead

Planning your meals ahead of time can help you keep your food varied and your diet of a high quality. Understanding the contents of your meals can also help you to manage calories if you are looking to lose weight. Planning lunches ahead makes you think about what you eat, and stops you making impulse decisions on your break from work. It can also help save you money too – win, win!

Drink more water

Recent research has shown that consuming water can actually play a role in boosting the metabolism and helping you process what you eat. In fact, researchers found that drinking two large glasses of water before every meal can help you lose weight and keep it off. Drinking water will also make you feel fuller more often, lessening the temptation to snack.

Don’t food shop hungry

We’ve all done it – felt our stomachs rumble as we peruse the supermarket aisles for delicious treats, sending all willpower out the window. A simple change like eating before you shop will stop you making those impulsive purchases you don’t need.

Ask yourself why you’re eating

If you stop and think about it, you don’t always eat because you’re hungry. Boredom, stress, tiredness and depression are all linked to unnecessary eating. Almost a third of adults who overeat on unhealthy foods say they do it because of stress.

Switch to wholegrain

Whether bread, rice, pasta or potatoes, carbohydrates are a large part of many UK adult diets. A reasonable amount of carbs is good for you, but overindulging in these foods is closely linked to weight gain. Swapping your white carbohydrates for brown ones can make all the difference, as wholegrain carbs not only offer more nutritional value but also contain more fibre and contain slower-burning natural sugars. More fibre encourages a healthier digestive system and can help you to feel fuller for longer, while the slow-burning sugars help to avoid those peaks and troughs in blood sugar that are linked to Type 2 diabetes.

Set yourself goals

Small, achievable goals are key to keeping you on track with your weight loss. Simply thinking ‘I want to be thinner’ without any specifics doesn’t really help you at all. Instead, come up with little goals like ‘lose x number of pounds’ or ‘go for a thirty minute run’ and give each one a schedule and a deadline.

Get plenty of sleep

Experts have long discussed the link between not getting enough sleep and gaining weight. Without a decent night’s sleep your hormone balance can become disturbed, affecting everything from your metabolism to your memory. This makes it easier to gain weight and harder to shake it. Not only this, but feeling tired is detrimental to your willpower, making you more likely to indulge in sweet treats for a quick source of energy.

Bulk Up Your Meals

Yes, that’s right – put more food on your plate! This doesn’t mean piling your plate with a mountain of pasta though. Instead, incorporate healthy vegetables, grains, nuts and lean meats into your dishes to stay full without indulging in fat or carb heavy foods.

Use the right kind of medication

There are no magic pills that make you lose weight and keep it off. However, there are a number of prescription medications available for individuals who struggle to manage their weight effectively. At Express Pharmacy, we offer Xenical which reduces the amount of fat you absorb from your food – a solution that can make a difference to those needing an extra push to shed weight.

If you would like more information or advice on taking Xenical or managing your weight more generally, you can call the fully-qualified pharmacy team or try our Live Chat tool.