We all want to lose weight at one point in our lives for various reasons. Whether it’s a pesky five pounds to one hundred pounds, there are many ways to do it without compromising your health with “fad” diets. The biggest challenge is to determine how many calories you are taking in per day. If you are taking in 2000 calories a day, just reducing that to 1500 calories is going to be a great beginning. Keep a food journal for a week and see what you are putting in your body daily. In a week, look up how many calories you really took in and don’t forget to add up your condiments. A good example is one tablespoon of mayonnaise is 94 calories!
Calories in, Calories out
After you have seen how many calories you are putting in, start making smarter choices. If you are drinking sugary drinks daily, start by cutting out one of those and replacing it with water. When you diet, water is essential. It keeps you hydrated plus it makes you feel fuller. Drinking a glass of water before a meal will make you feel less hungry. If you do not like plain water, use water enhancing flavors that have zero calories. They taste great and are not expensive. If you must have a soda, make it a diet soda. If you are a coffee drinker, it has no calories but what you add to it does. If you use a flavored creamer from the grocery store, they average 30-45 calories per tablespoon, but the sugar-free versions usually have 20 per tablespoon. If you feel you can’t give up the coffee creamer, useless, it really will make a difference.
When you sit down for a meal, cut your portions by half. If you have a favorite vegetable that is low in calories (cucumbers work well) eat more of those to make you feel fuller without making you feel deprived. Sometimes it is the simple things that you do that make an impact on your caloric intake.
When you are trying to lose weight, don’t forget the exercise! If you are a desk worker, it is important to get up and move. While keeping your food diary, pay attention to how much you are walking and exercising. If you have not previously been exercising, now is the time. It really helps burn some of those extra calories.
To incorporate extra walking into your life, pay attention to where you park your vehicle when you shop. If you find that you take the closest parking spot to a store entrance, park further away. If you have the opportunity to use stairs instead of an elevator, use them. If you have the time to go to a gym, this is the best way to kick start your weight loss and get the much-needed exercise that comes along with it.
Another important factor in weight loss is getting a good night’s sleep. Your body needs time to recharge and sleep is essential. While some people only need 6 hours of sleep some need more. Factor this into your weight loss plan. When you are tired from a restless night, you tend to make poor food choices the next day. There are many ways to lose weight without resorting to starving yourself. Find someone else that is wanting to lose weight and exchange ideas with them. Using one of the many online forums about weight loss is a great start for food ideas and just to rant if you feel you’re not losing the weight that you want.
Don’t give up
If you find that making changes to your diet and exercise is not working, see a doctor. There could be an underlying reason that you are not losing the weight that you want to lose. A doctor can guide you if you are not losing weight and there are no health problems that are hindering the process. They can prescribe safe diet medications that will assist in your journey. Losing weight is not going to happen overnight but if you are determined to lose it, start out with the simple things first. You will find that making simple changes will make a big impact and you will be healthier for it.