Excess weight can affect a person in many ways besides appearance. The risks of certain diseases increase if a person is obese, such as diabetes, hypertension, and sleep apnea. Being overweight also puts a strain on the joints, lungs, and heart, making them all work harder than they would normally need to. Obesity can also contribute to low self-esteem, depression, and anxiety. Many people are struggling to lose weight for all of the above reasons. It may be easier than you think if you can find the right approach for you.
In order to lose weight, a person should first consult a doctor to see what will work best for them. Everyone has different limits and specific health concerns. A doctor can help address those. The areas of your life that need to change for weight loss to occur are what/when/how to eat, activity level, and attitude.
Here are a few basic tips to get you started:
First: Begin by finding a food plan that will work for you. Obviously, things like diabetes, allergies, or vegetarianism will affect your food choices. So find something that will work for you in that respect. It’s also best not to do any sort of crash dieting. Find a plan that involves only slight calorie reduction, and focuses more on switching over to healthier foods. Your body will be working hard to burn excess fat and needs to be nourished properly. Make sure you are getting a proper balance of vitamins and minerals as well. Supplement if you need to.
Second: Find an exercise plan that you can actually stick to. Exercising for even fifteen minutes a day will help a lot. It could involve walking, running, dancing, swimming, or even climbing stairs. It’s also important to build muscle. More muscle helps the metabolism stay elevated, even after you are done exercising. Weight lifting, Pilates, and yoga are all helpful in building muscle.
Third: Set realistic goals. Know what you are capable of and don’t push yourself too hard. Pushing yourself too hard will only make you give up too soon. Also don’t expect to see results every day. The scale may not budge for days on end, but your body is still benefiting from healthy food and exercise. The changes you make should be changes for life. Things that make you feel better physically and mentally, that you know you can stick with long term. This will make weight loss maintenance easier as well.
Fourth: Follow a few simple eating rules. Eat enough fiber. Fiber makes you feel full, slows digestion, and is healthy for the colon. Drink plenty of water. Six to eight glasses a day will keep you hydrated properly. Water is also good for the elimination of wastes, which will be increased if the body is burning excess fat. Keep away from obvious bad foods, such as fried food, overly salty food, or excessively sugary food. Less processed foods are best, they retain more of their nutrients, and will make you feel more satisfied than junk food.
Overall the best way to lose weight is to make small realistic changes to your diet and activity level, and be disciplined about following your new plan. Consistency and determination will yield results, and help you maintain your ideal weight in the long run.