When Rebel Wilson chose her new year resolution, she meant business. She decided to make 2020 her “Year of Health” and by all accounts, she is making good on that commitment. Rebel has experienced dramatic weight loss and feels as good as she looks!
She is seeing a personal trainer who recently bragged about her grit on Instagram. She is working out seven days a week and her body is responding!
Wilson has always been proud of her figure, looking at it as an asset that helps her stand out in an overwhelmingly skinny crowd. Rebel has a wildly successful career in film but lately, her fans have noticed that one aspect of her life has changed. Dramatically.
Rebel is setting her sites on a seriously healthy lifestyle and as a result, has lost a significant amount of weight. She looks so different that some people do not even recognize the star. Such a big change has fans wondering: how did she do it?
Cardio Seven Days a Week
Rebel is hitting her weight loss hard by working out with a personal trainer. In an interview with Hollywood Life, trainer Acero said she has been committed to her daily workout routine, which involves cardio, whether it’s running or walking.
“I encourage all my clients to do an extra bit of cardio during the day to keep moving,” Acero said. “A little tip is get a watch or use your phone to count steps and aim for 10,000 steps a day. If you’re on 9,000 steps at 10 p.m. you have to get it done.”
Further, Wilson does circuit training in the gym, which involves the assault bike, battle rope slams, and TRX squats. “I use the TRX as it focuses on using body weight and gravity as resistance to build strength, balance, coordination, flexibility, core and joint stability,” Acero said.
In an interview back in 2015 she described her emotional relationship with food stating that she turned to food in good times, and in bad ones. Wilson says food is her one vice. Where others may turn to alcohol or drugs to celebrate or self-medicate, she turned to food for comfort or reward.
She told Cosmopolitan, “I love me some ice cream or dessert, and it comes at times when I’m happy or sad. So when I have an incredibly successful day, I want to celebrate and reward myself with food. If I’ve had a sad or stressful day, food is also comfort. You would probably describe it as emotional or stress-eating.”
Kicking Off a New Healthy Year
Rebel had lost some weight while filming the movie Cats last year. The dance sequences were rigorous and demanding. On top of that, the set was kept at a steamy 100 degrees to ensure that the dancers did not cool down between takes and injure themselves when they got back at it. All that led to a quick eight pound loss in just four days.
“These people are like, the best dancers in the whole world, so they can’t cool their muscles down or they could get an injury and they’d be out of the film … So, they’d heat up the set like a sauna so we would never cool down, but made it pretty uncomfortable,” Wilson told Entertainment Tonight.
Early in 2020, Rebel posted her pledge on Instagram and invited fans to come along for the ride. “Okay so for me 2020 is going to be called ‘The Year of Health,”” she wrote.
“So I put on the athleisure and went out for a walk, deliberately hydrating on the couch right now and trying to avoid the sugar and junk food, which is going to be hard after the holidays I’ve just had but I’m going to do it! Who’s with me in making some positive changes this year?”
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Okay so for me 2020 is going to be called “The Year of Health” – so I put on the athleisure and went out for a walk, deliberately hydrating on the couch right now and trying to avoid the sugar and junk food which is going to be hard after the holidays I’ve just had but I’m going to do it! Who’s with me in making some positive changes this year?
Comfortable in Your Skin, No Matter the Size
Even though Rebel looks and feels great in her “new” body she knows that the ultimate goal is to love yourself. This journey is about feeling great in the skin you’re in, no matter what size or shape you are.
Rather than trying to hit a number on the scale or a dress size, focus on what makes you feel good, healthy, and comfortable. Love the skin you’re in and the rest will follow.
To that end, Rebel launched a plus size fashion line called Rebel Wilson x Angels. The designs come in sizes 12 – 24 because people of every size should be able to find and afford clothing that makes them feel fabulous! Rebel said she was inspired after having trouble finding fashionable clothes in her size.
“I remember I didn’t even go to a friend’s wedding in my 20s because I didn’t know where to buy a dress in my size,” she told InStyle magazine.
Role Model for the Body Positive Movement
Our society is slowly becoming body positive. Women are tired of feeling “less than” for having a completely typical body size or shape. The focus is changing to health and wellness, physically and mentally, over thinness. Beauty and health go hand-in-hand and can be found in every size and shape imaginable. Rebel’s journey and attitude towards health make her a steward and role model for the body positive movement.
Small Changes for Lasting Results
Small changes to your outlook and daily life can have a dramatic impact on your body, inside and out. Here are some examples.
- Don’t eat dessert every night, but don’t deny yourself dessert every night, either.
- Allow yourself to enjoy the things you love to eat and drink, but do so with an eye on moderation.
- Look for opportunities to be more active. Take the stairs. Walk around while you talk on the phone or stand up while checking your email. Move more!
- Get a reusable water bottle and carry it with you, everywhere. Hydration is closely linked to energy, hunger, and over all health. Drink water.
Rebel Wilson’s continuing transformation has been amazing to witness. She is inspiring so many fans to take steps towards a healthier lifestyle. Follow this plan and you, too, will be on your way to a healthier body, inside and out.
So How did She Do It?
Here is a quick summary of the specific healthy practices that have aided in the Rebel Wilson weight loss success and a brief explanation of why they are effective:
- Consuming a High Fiber Diet. Rebel Wilson strives to consume at least 35 grams of fiber a day. Why is fiber important for weight loss? Simple carbohydrates, including refined (white) grains and foods containing added sugar, cause your blood sugar to “spike” then “crash”. This results in a temporary energy boost, followed by fatigue, hunger, and cravings (often for sugary and high fat fats). In contrast, high fiber foods, also known as complex carbohydrates, are absorbed into the bloodstream at a much slower rate, thus, stabilizing your blood sugar, preventing cravings, and keeping you fuller for longer.
- Emphasizing Healthy Fats. In addition to fiber, Rebel is a huge fan of incorporating healthy fats into her diet, including fatty fish, avocados, nuts, and seeds. Due to its’ complex structure, fat slows down digestion and causes any carbohydrate that is present to be absorbed at a slower rate. This helps prevent extreme rises and falls in your blood sugar and subsequent cravings. Additionally, fat also stimulates the release of cholecystokinin, a hormone that acts as an appetite suppressant, in the small intestine.
- Incorporating Protein Sources. Many of Rebels favorite high fiber foods and healthy fats are also great sources of protein, including fatty fish, nuts, seeds, and eggs. Similar to healthy fats and fiber, protein helps slow digestion and keep blood sugar level to manage hunger. Cholecystokinin production is also triggered by the presence of protein in the small intestine.
- Participating in Regular Exercise. According to Rebel, she tries to incorporate exercise at least 4 times per week. While diet has the greatest influence over long-term weight loss success, supplementing regular exercise may help you reach your goals faster and is absolutely crucial for weight maintenance. As we lose weight, our metabolism slows, meaning we either have to eat fewer calories or burn more calories through physical activity to continue to lose weight. Because drastically reducing our calorie intake is not very sustainable (or enjoyable), adding in exercise is a great alternative.
- Staying Confident. Even before her weight loss, Rebel Wilson was well known for her self-confidence and body positivity. When you recognize that your self-worth is not contingent on your weight, it frees you to focus on what is most important (your physical and mental health) and pick yourself back up after you face inevitable set-backs. We may not be perfect, but with a little hard work, consistency, and patience, we can tackle anything we set our minds to!
Your Rebel Wilson Weight Loss Meal Plan
We talked above about how fiber, healthy fats, and protein are an essential part of Rebel Wilson’s weight loss transformation. We are now going to discuss in depth how you can incorporate these nutrients into your diet through some beneficial and nourishing foods.
As mentioned above, eating a high fiber diet can help you reach your weight loss goals more effectively by stabilizing your blood sugar to curb cravings and increase satiety. Fiber also offers many other health benefits, including improved cholesterol levels and promoting regular bowel movements when coupled with adequate fluid intake.
Foods that are naturally high in fiber also come packaged with many other beneficial nutrients, including vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants!
Sources of fiber include 100% whole grains (buckwheat, millet, rolled or old-fashioned oats, quinoa, brown or wild rice, whole-grain barley, whole rye, whole wheat, popcorn, etc.), nuts, seeds, fruits, and starchy (beans, peas, corn potatoes, winter squash, etc.) and non-starchy vegetables.
For optimal results, you should substitute these high-fiber foods, also know as complex carbohydrates, in place of simple carbohydrates. Simple carbohydrates include refined (white) grains and foods containing added sugar, such as sugar sweetened beverages, white bread, desserts and baked goods, and most breakfast cereals, crackers, and granola bars.
The list below compares the fiber content of various high-fiber foods.
As you can see, many of these foods are widely available at any supermarket and easy to add to your diet. Think about it: With just one cup of beans, one cup of berries, one cup of broccoli, and one avocado, you can get more than 35 grams of fiber in your diet every day!
Of course, while consuming 35 grams of fiber per day like Rebel Wilson is an excellent goal, depending on your caloric needs, you may not need to consume quite this much to achieve health benefits and ward off hunger.
The Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA), published by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), suggests daily fiber intake of at least 14 grams for every 1000 calories consumed. For individuals following a 1600 or 2000 calorie diet, this equates to a goal of 22.4 and 28 grams of fiber, respectively.
I also want to note that products labeled “100% wheat”, “multi-grain”, “12-grain”, “cracked wheat”, “stoneground”, etc. are often not 100% whole grain and, in many cases, don’t contain any whole grains!
These products often consist of refined (white) grains that have had their external layers, including the bran, removed during processing. While some of the vitamins and minerals that are lost during the refining process are replaced through a process called enrichment, the fiber is usually not replaced.
To ensure a product is 100% whole grain, look for the word “whole” in front of each grain listed under the ingredients list. You can also look for the “100% Whole Grain” stamp on the package, with means the product has been verified by the Whole Grains Council.
In addition to fiber, Rebel also emphasizes healthy fats in her weight loss diet. As mentioned above, incorporating healthy fat into your diet can help encourage weight loss because it slows digestion, tightens blood sugar control, and stimulates the release of cholecystokinin, an appetite suppressant, in the small intestine.
Healthy fats also play many other important roles in the body, including encouraging the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins and improving cholesterol levels.
Consumption of omega-3 fatty acids in particular is linked to improved cognitive function, healthy visual and neurological development in infants, reduced inflammation and joint pain, and decreased risk of dementia and depression.
According to the DGA, individuals should strive to swap saturated fat and trans-fat in their diet with healthy (monounsaturated and polyunsaturated) fats to optimize their cholesterol levels and promote heart health. The DGA specifically recommends limiting saturated intake to less than 10% of total calorie intake and keeping trans-fat intake as low as possible.
Foods high in saturated fat and trans-fat to limit include fatty and processed meats, fried foods, full-fat dairy products, butter and other solid cooking fats, baked goods and desserts, and foods containing hydrogenated oils. Try swapping these foods with sources of healthy fat, including heart healthy oils (olive, avocado, canola, etc.), avocado, nuts, seeds, eggs, and fatty fish.
Omega- 3 fatty acid is a specific type of polyunsaturated fat that many Americans fail to get enough of in their diet. Omega-3 is considered an “essential” fatty acid because our bodies cannot synthesize it and, therefore, we must get it from our diet.
Coincidently, some of Rebel’s favorite healthy fat sources are chocked full of omega-3 fatty acids, including :
- Fatty fish such as Atlantic salmon, herring, tuna, sardines, and anchovies. In fact, fatty fish are your best and highest sources of essential fatty acids available. As a result, the American Heart Association recommends that you consume 2-3 servings per week. Just be sure limit your intake of fish high in mercury, including mackerel, swordfish, tilefish, and shark. Children and pregnant women should avoid high mercury fish completely.
- Nuts and seeds such as walnuts, chia seeds, flaxseeds, almonds, and hemp seeds.
- Eggs, especially the yolks. Chickens fed a high omega-3 diet produce eggs with the highest content. According to the American Heart Association, consuming 1 egg per day, or up to 7 eggs per week, as a part of a healthy diet is not shown to raise blood cholesterol levels.
- Grass-fed beef.
- Canola and soybean oil.
As you can see, the food sources that contain omega-3 fatty acids are more limited than those that contain fiber. While it is best to get omega-3 from our diet, you may benefit from fish oil supplementation if you struggle to incorporate the food sources above or have a history of heart disease.
Similarly, individuals who avoid eggs and fish in their diets may benefit from algae oil supplementation to ensure adequate intake of DHA, a specific type of omega-3 fatty acid that is found sparsely in plant-based foods.
Of course, you should always talk to your doctor before starting any new supplement for weight loss. Omega-3 supplements may be contraindicated if you are taking certain drugs, including blood thinners and some NSAIDs.
Also, be aware that, unlike medications, supplements can be sold on the market without vigorous testing to ensure that they are safe, effective, and actually contain the ingredients they claim.
Ask you healthcare provider for their brand recommendations or look for brands that have been tested by verified third parties, such as ConsumerLab.com or U.S. Pharmacopeia Convention.
If you’re interested in adding more fats to your weight loss diet, you can start by snacking on nuts, eating more fatty fish, and cooking with canola or olive oil.
Although healthy fat has many nutritional benefits, keep in mind that it is calorically dense, so it is important to practice portion control to prevent weight gain (we will touch on this in a bit).
Similar to fiber and healthy fats, protein also helps to slow digestion and stabilize blood sugars, keeping you fuller longer and aiding in weight loss. You probably know that protein is necessary for building and repairing muscle after a workout. In addition to making up muscle cells, protein is also a key constituent of every other cell in your body, including bone, cartilage, skin, and blood cells. Adequate protein is also essential for a healthy immune system.
As mentioned previously, many of Rebels go-to high fiber foods and healthy fats are also great sources of protein, including beans, fatty fish, nuts, seeds, and eggs. In addition to these options, it is good idea to incorporate lean proteins.
As suggested by their name, lean proteins are low in calories and fat, including cholesterol-raising saturated fat, while still being packed with beneficial nutrients. The combination of being low in calories yet filling makes them perfect for weight loss!
Examples of lean proteins include lean cuts of meat (skinless chicken and turkey breast, pork tenderloin, extra lean ground beef, etc.), lean cuts of fish (cod, haddock, tuna, etc.), shellfish, tofu and other soy products, and non-fat and low-fat dairy.
In addition to being high in fiber, beans are also considered a lean protein. If you are dairy free, unsweetened soy and pea milk products fortified with calcium and vitamin D are the best high-protein alternatives to milk.
Now that we have touched on the sources and benefits of fiber, healthy fats, and protein, lets discuss how to tie all of these nutrients together into a well-balanced meal. The USDA’s MyPlate shows you how you can divide up your plate to incorporate all of the food groups.
MyPlate recommends that you aim to make 1/4 of your plate protein (lean protein or high protein, healthy fats), 1/4 of your plate grains and/or starchy vegetables (with at least half of your grains being whole grains), and 1/2 of your plate fruits and non-starchy vegetables.