Considering Dubai’s range of tasty restaurants and easy-access cheap lip-smacking delivery food, combined with brunch culture and sedentary city lifestyle, it’s not surprising that weight gain in the city (dubbed the ‘Dubai stone’) has become equally as well-known. Here’s nine ways to fight off the notorious Dubai stone.
Plan, plan and plan again
The only way to beat the Dubai stone is to make sure you plan healthy meals ahead. It’s much easier to stick to healthy diet if you know what you will be eating each meal – and means your less likely to reach for a food app to order a burger. Set aside some time each Saturday to plan your meals for the week ahead. We’ve got a tonne of recipes that are quicker than the time it takes for a fast food delivery to arrive, for lots of quick and healthy recipes, click here.
Healthy doesn’t mean hard
Plenty of supermarkets are doing home delivery now, so you can skip the lengthy queues in the mall. Geant offers same day and next day delivery for free (depending on demand) and reasonably priced fresh fruit and vegetables. Want quick and easy organic food? The food delivery app Instashop is now also offering same day or next day delivery for organic produce. Don’t care whether it’s organic or not? The app also offers food delivery on everyday healthy food items within 45 minutes.
Avoid brunch like the plague
The best way to stick to your healthy eating plan is to avoid temptation. Friday brunch is the best example of this – with copious amount of food, drink (and let’s face it – calories) it’s one of the fastest ways to undo all your hard work being healthy during the week. Instead, book in other activities so it is much easier to say ‘no’ when friends suggest brunch. Going out for a healthy breakfast (Comptior 102, Wild and the Moon and the Organic Café have great menus) or an early afternoon yoga, boxing or bar class are good ways to not only avoid the extra calories, but also to help get in shape.
And say no to ladies’ nights
The same goes for ladies’ night deals – with tonnes of high calorie (and free!) drinks and food on offer, it’s best to skip the deals and stay home. Veg out on the sofa with friends with with these low-calorie snack recipes instead.
Research different diet plans
Everyone is built differently, whereas some people can eat high-carbohydrate dishes every meal time, and not put on weight, other people have to change their portion size dramatically in order to lose weight. Whether you are considering a paleo diet,going sugar free, or a low carbohydrate diet, read up on different options and decide if any of them work for you, and be sure to speak to a health professional before starting a new diet.
Everyone has days when they’re too tired to cook. Instead of ordering from one of the many fast food restaurants in Dubai, pick one of the healthier food delivery services (here’s a list of five of the best health food deliveries in the city).Many health food cafes are also available through services such as deliveroo and food on click. Want to pop out for a healthy lunch mid-week? Here’s a list of ten health food restaurants to try in Dubai.
Change your sleep pattern
Research shows that sleep deprivation can have a direct impact on whether you will eat junk food the next day.In Dubai, due to the weather, opening times and culture, late nights are often a part of day-to-day life, however it’s important to plan ahead and make sure you get a good night’s sleep as often as possible, to help reduce your chances of getting cravings for unhealthy food.
Use free exercise facilities
Does your flat or house have a community gym? Take advantage of it! Even if it’s not as up-to-date as gyms you have to pay to access, the fact that it’s a lot closer means you can easily spend a quick 15 minutes there and build in to your day-to-day routine, which will add up over the weeks and months for improved overall fitness. Even if you don’t have access to a gym, there are plenty of free exercise routines to do from home (HIIT training has been built specifically for people with little space and time to exercise, and famous advocates include trainers like Joe Wicks).
Keep a wall chart
One of the easiest ways to keep track of your progress is to have a wall calendar somewhere you are likely to see it every day. You can use it to tick off days that you’ve stuck to your healthy routine, to encourage you forward. It’s a good idea to set goals and mark them on here, and plan none-diet related treats for when you reach your goals.