As 2013 draws to a close and weight loss resolutions are contemplated for 2014, here are some helpful tips on how to lose weight carefully and successfully.
Weight loss is simply a matter of less input and more output.
You will win at weight loss when you increasing your daily activity or consume fewer calories than those needed to maintain your weight.
There are 3,500 calories in a pound. To lose one pound per week means you need to create a 250 calorie deficit through diet and another 250 calorie deficit through exercise.
So get active and find exercises that you enjoy.
Cardiovascular and resistance exercise increases your metabolism, tones and strengthens muscle and is effective in losing and managing your weight.
Keep a daily food log.
When creating a nutritional program for my clients who are looking to lose weight, I ask them how many calories they consume in a day.
Typically, most don’t know or greatly underestimate their food intake by about 25 per cent, and at the same time over-estimate their daily physical activity.
I then have them begin with food journaling for seven days to give a clear picture of eating habits, and find out how many calories they are actually consuming.
Writing everything down helps in making smarter food choices and provides a more accurate picture of your daily consumption.
Research has found that keeping a food journal is a great tool for success in dropping weight!
Calculating your Basal Metabolic Rate BMR can help you manage your weight by determining your daily caloric need.
Your BMR is an estimate of how many calories your body needs to maintain its current weight.
It represents the amount of calories per day your body burns, regardless of exercise.
If you’ve noticed that every year, it becomes harder to eat whatever you want and stay slim, you’ve also learnt that your BMR decreases as you age. Likewise, depriving yourself of food in hopes of losing weight also decreases your BMR, a foil to your intentions.
However, a regular routine of cardiovascular exercise can increase your BMR, improving your health and fitness when your body’s ability to burn energy gradually slows down.
Experts recommend weight loss at the rate of 0.5-2 lbs./week.
Remember that this estimate is based on your body weight, height, age, gender, and activity level.
It may vary slightly depending on other factors.
Generally, women should not consume any less than 1,200 calories per day, and men should not consume less than 1,500 calories per day.
Eat six small meals a day: breakfast, lunch, dinner and three snacks.
Try to eat every few hours to curb hunger and promote a higher metabolism. Watch your portions and serving sizes and aim for a balance between raw fruits, veggies, whole grain, and lean meats and dairy.
The best way to determine the amount of food in a given serving is to look at the nutrition facts label and measure it out.
Although this may not be practical or that much fun, if you are able to take the time, you will soon be able to “eyeball” the amount of food and know whether there is too much or too little.
Also take look at calorie counts but also looks at nutritional value and ingredients. Try to avoid foods with white flour, sugar and sugar substitutes, saturated fats and trans fats
And most of all, have patience, persevere through setbacks and focus on your goal.
Many people lose patience when they don’t see the pounds drop off quickly despite their weight loss efforts.
But as I remind my clients, the added weight didn’t show up overnight and it won’t disappear overnight either.
There may things in daily life that come up to keep us from exercising and eating right and temporarily set us back.
Don’t beat yourself up—be positive, focus on your weight loss goal and adopt a healthy lifestyle.