Beat Your Body's Fat Traps

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Giving your body a steady supply of calories keeps blood sugar normal during and after exercise, and it can prevent an excessively high insulin response the next time you eat that encourages excess body fat. To avoid taking in extra calories because you're eating more often, keep meals to 500 calories or less and snacks under 200, limiting total calories to about 1,600 to 1,800 a day.

Have Protein at Every Meal

Protein increases satiety and helps keep your appetite under control by stimulating gut hormones that help you feel full. Options include eggs, milk, soy milk, yogurt, and oatmeal for breakfast. Include nuts, beans, whole grains, low-fat dairy, fish, lean meats, and poultry at other meals and snacks to ensure you get enough protein.

Load Up on Fiber

Bulky foods will fill you up on fewer calories. Aim for 25 to 30 g of fiber per day. Include at least 5 g in every meal and snack. At meals, try 1/2 cup of black beans, 1 cup of split-pea soup, or 1 cup of steamed spinach with 1/2 cup of raw carrot sticks. For snacks, try an apple plus a handful of nuts, or a rye crispbread and a pear.

Quench Your Thirst with Water

Exercise is more likely to increase your thirst, but many people mistake thirst for hunger. Next time you have the munchies, especially postworkout, try to satisfy your desire with calorie-free H2O. Sipping sweetened drinks can quickly override any calorie deficit created by working out.

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More from Prevention:

10 Reasons to Get Off The Couch

5 Yoga Moves to Boost Energy

9 Easy Ways to De-Junk Your Diet

15 New Health Tricks to Try

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