8 tips to healthy weight loss

Planning on shedding those extra pounds? Here are a few tips to keep in mind when it comes to creating a healthy diet and weight loss plan.

8 tips to healthy weight loss

1. Take up an active hobby

Take up a hobby that involves physical activity. A healthy diet isn't the only thing that will help you lose weight.

  • Hiking, rock climbing, jogging or even walking daily are great activities to keep you fit and help you slim down.
  • You can ask a friend to join you to help stay motivated to keep up the good work.

2. Consider taking a calcium supplement

Losing weight can trigger bone loss. So women especially should consider supplementing  with 500 to 600 milligrams of calcium twice a day.

  • Choose a calcium supplement that also contains vitamin D.
  • Be sure to check with your healthcare professional before taking any supplements.

3. Pair calorie-cutting with exercise

People who exercise as well as cut calories have an easier time losing weight and keeping it off than people who just cut calories.

  • Burning an extra 250 calories a day — about the amount in a brisk 45-minute walk — lops off about 26 pounds a year, as long as you don't replace those calories with food.

4. Know your Body Mass Index

To find out whether your body weight falls within the range of normal, overweight, or obese, consult a Body Mass Index (BMI) table.

  • If your BMI is less than 25, your weight is normal.
  • If your BMI is at least 25 but less than 30, you're overweight.
  • If your BMI is 30 or above, you're considered obese.

5. Keep a food diary for five days

Log everything you eat and drink, even if it's just water or a breath mint.

  • Your entries should include the time of day, size of servings, number of servings and calories.
  • You should also note the emotions you were feeling at the time or any other circumstances that had an influence on you just before eating.
  • Review your food diary with a registered dietitian. He or she will help you identify situations or emotions that may cause you to overeat.
  • These diaries are especially helpful for people managing diabetes. They help you remember what you ate that sent your blood sugar soaring, and what keeps you on an even keel.

6. Find a weight-loss buddy

Dieting with a buddy provides more than support — it can help you lose more weight.

  • Having someone within walking distance can be an added bonus.
  • Find three neighbours and announce your weight-loss intentions. Chances are they'll have some weight to lose as well.

7. Consider bariatric surgery as a last resort

So-called "stomach-stapling" surgery can have dramatically positive effects on some obese people, especially those with diabetes as it can practically reverse the condition.

  • Don't take gastric bypass lightly. It's major surgery, so it's not without risks, including a one per cent risk of death from the surgery itself.
  • Weight-loss surgery is recommended only for people who are severely obese (usually with a body mass index of 40 or more, but if you have diabetes, 35 or more) and can't lose weight any other way.
  • Those who have surgery must commit to serious lifestyle changes.
  • After the surgery they can only eat small meals, may need dietary supplements or medications, and will require frequent medical checkups.
  • The cost of this surgery is substantial, too, and some insurance companies won't cover it.

8. Aim to lose weight slowly

You can shave off just one pound a week — or even two pounds a month — by making small adjustments in your eating and physical activity. Don't let fad diets dazzle you with "miracle" plans in which you can lose 100 pounds in two months.

Researchers say that people who achieve weight loss in such programs typically gain back most or all of the weight within five years. You're better off learning how to make the lifestyle changes that will keep the weight off permanently, even if it means slower weight loss.

The material on this website is provided for entertainment, informational and educational purposes only and should never act as a substitute to the advice of an applicable professional. Use of this website is subject to our terms of use and privacy policy.
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