It is a known fact that a large percentage of the North American adult population is suffering from being overweight or borderline obese. In recent years this trend continued and also affected young adults and children. Losing weight can be a challenge and struggle for a lot of teens and children.
Many attempt extreme dieting for short periods of time and end up gaining all the weight back. While many others simply give up because they don’t see immediate and fast results which could motivate them to continue. Other people simply don’t know the proper way losing weight in a safe and healthy way. Many teens try diet pills and other weight loss products, which can be dangerous and harmful to their body because of the chemicals and other untested substances may contain. It is unfortunate that a wide range of young people fall into this trap and start taking these pills and substances without knowing the long term effects they pose to their body.
Weight Loss as a Long Term Commitment
First you need to find out what your ideal weight is taking into consideration the BMI (Body Mass Index). It is best to consult with your doctor or dietician. He or she can measure your body fat, blood pressure, weight and height then provide you with realistic weight loss goals by helping you make a diet plan and exercise schedule.
Losing weight is a long term commitment; it requires patience, consistency and motivation. If you try to lose a lot of weight in a short amount of time by falling for quick fixes such as diet pills and trying extreme dieting fads, chances are you will gain back the weight because your body didn’t time to adapt to these drastic changes.
Therefore, taking small steps in changing your daily diet and exercise regime will benefit you the most in the end. Although you will notice the results gradually it will be long lasting and safe. At times it you may be discouraged when stepping on the scale and see no results after a couple weeks of hard work and dieting. However, you should make sure not to give up so quickly. It takes time for your body to adapt to a new diet and regular exercise, which is why it could take longer to notice the changes.
Losing weight is a new adjustment and a change in your daily lifestyle where some alterations might have to be made in order to reach your goal. Therefore, having some sort of support system from either family members or friends is important to help motivate you and keep you on track.
Permanent weight loss requires different thinking and a lifestyle change
Here are some small but valuable steps towards losing weight; they are fairly simple and straight forward to help you start making important changes when going through the weight loss process:
- Start off by buying healthier foods to fill your refrigerator with. This will help to reduce the amount of temptation from the unhealthy foods. Reduce your portion size for every meal and avoid drinking sodas or at least reduce the amount to one can per week. Begin incorporating some healthier foods into your daily diet and start eliminating the unhealthy fried, fatty foods that have no real nutritional value.
- When going to the grocery store, read the nutrition guide labels and you should always be aware of the amount of calories, and other nutritional value each item has in your shopping basket. It is important that you learn to read the nutrition labels properly and use the information on them to your benefit. Before you eat what’s inside check out the facts first! Start off by reading the total fat content in the product, saturated fats are what you should look out for, they are particularly bad for you, too much of it can lead to high cholesterol levels and heart disease. Also note that, just one gram of fat is twice the amount of calories as carbohydrates and protein! After eyeing the fat content, read the sugar label and make sure that the level is low, you should not be having too much sugar while trying to reduce body fat. All this information is essential to know because you should never go above what your expected daily calorie intake is. Research from the Health Department of the US and Canada has concluded that an average female should be consuming approximately 1500-1600 calories daily. For an average Male it is approximately 2000-2500 calories daily. However when losing weight, your calorie intake might need to be a little less than this depending on your body type and gender.
- When trying to lose weight, you should never feel that you’re completely depriving yourself from all the other good foods. It’s about moderation and keeping a healthy balance. It can be frustrating when your body’s craving surgery of fatty foods and you feel that you can’t indulge at all. The truth is, there are ways to help curb your appetite and satisfy your cravings.
- Substitute a healthy snack for the junk food that you crave. There are always alternatives, for example: if you crave ice cream, don’t go for the heavy creamy type, choose something lighter like a fruity sorbet, it’s refreshing and the taste is just as satisfying. You should also be aware that it is ok to have a cheat meal after a week of strict dieting. If you are always eating too strictly, you may be setting yourself up for more cravings and bingeing. Therefore, a good suggestion would be to allow you to have one cheat meal at the end of the week but remember after that you must stay on track and eat clean the following days.
- Now that you know about how to eat healthy in order to lose weight, you should also know that incorporating exercise at least three days a week is the key to see maximum results. It is vital not only to your health, but it helps you burn those extra calories for weight loss. If you are just starting off it may be a good idea to hire a personal trainer who can help you make an exercise program that’s right for you. Not all exercises have the same effect on the body, therefore certain exercises should be chosen for specific body types. It can be hard at first to try high intensity works outs because your body and joints aren’t used to it. In that case, you can add more activities slowly.
Increasing your daily activity to boost your metabolic rate
For example: use the stairs, instead of the elevator, when shopping park further away from the entrance. Swimming is also a great exercise for weight loss and it’s easy on your joints. Once you have done these you can begin to add more intensity and frequency into your exercises. Brisk walking, cycling, and jogging are some of the best forms of cardio exercises which burn the most amount of fat overall. Not only does it burn tones of calories it helps to increase your metabolic rate over time to burn off calories faster.
Working up to about 30-40 minutes of high intensity workouts 3 to 4 times a week will guarantee you results along with your healthy diet. Adding some strength training and weights helps to build lean muscle which changes your body composition to shape your body. Although it doesn’t burn as many calories as cardiovascular exercise does, but it increases your daily metabolic rate which is the foundation for weight loss.