7 Tips to Help You Slim Down

From food to fitness, learn seven simple ways to slim down.

Add cheese at breakfast
Low in sodium, high in protein (up to 8 grams) and with few calories (60 to 80), cheese sticks have a host of benefits. Eat them as is, or make the flavor last longer by shredding on from top to bottom, into think, dangly strips.

Try tahini instead of peanut butter
Made from ground sesame seeds, this paste is the perfect peanut butter substitute. It has a similar flavor and more filling fiber and calcium but less sugar and saturated fat. Spread it on a sandwich or slather it on apple slices.

Serve salmon for dinner
This lean protein is high in omega-3 fatty acids and free of sugar and starch. Mix it with egg whites, a little bit of mayo and some bread crumbs, form into patties and grill or broil.

Pick pistachios for a snack
You get about 49 per ounce, for just 170 calories. Buying them in the shell and eating them one by one slows you down. By the time you’re done, your brain will tell your stomach you’re full.

Make substitutions
When cooking or baking, see if you can swap out high-calorie ingredients for lighter options. When making pancakes, for example, replace ¼ to 1/3 cup of flour with ground flaxseed meal. The omega-3 and fiber in flaxseed add nutrients to the dish without changing the taste.

Get moving
Not only can exercise help you lose weight faster, but it can also help you live longer. Every hour you spend camped out watching television after your turn 24 might reduce your lifespan by 22 minutes, according to a study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

Join a weight-loss program
There is a 20 percent chance that overweight people will lose at least 5 percent of their body weight when they participate in a supportive, team-based slim-down program, according to a study in the journal Obesity. See if any programs exist in your town.