Weight Loss the Safe and Sensible Way: Changes to Last a Lifetime!
At NetWellness our experts cannot give you a specific weight loss or a disease management plan. But, they can give you tips that have helped many people lose weight—and keep it off.
Before you start ANY new diet or exercise program, check with your doctor.
To help you meet your weight loss goals, try working with a resisted dietician and an exercise professional. These experts can work with your doctor to make a diet and exercise routine to meet your goals. Find a registered dietitian near you at the American Dietetic Association’s website, http://www.eatright.org/. To find a highly skilled (“Gold Star”) exercise professional, go to the American College of Sports Medicine Profinder.
Lose Weight Safely
Reaching a healthy weight should be a slow, safe process—not quick. The goal is to change unhealthy habits into healthy ones so that your weight loss will last a lifetime. Depending on your goals, losing between ½ to 2 pounds per week would be a realistic goal.
Increase Your Physical Activity
Physical activity is the key to losing weight. Exercise can help you gain muscle and burn more calories. The more active you are, the faster your body can burn calories. This is also called your also called metabolism or basal metabolic rate.
Slowly make your workouts harder and longer. Try to be active for 30-60minutes a day. If you are overweight and are not very active (sedentary), you will need to make even smaller increases in activity. You can do this by having shorter workouts several times a day. Try walking for 10 minutes three times a day. This will help you develop a more active lifestyle.
You can improve your health while burning calories by:
Lifting weights (resistance exercises) can help you to build muscle mass. For more information about becoming more active, check out the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Physical Activity Guidelines for healthy adults.
Control Your Calories
To lose weight, reduce the number of calories you eat. For tips on eating healthy or even to create your own food plan, visit the website http://www.choosemyplate.gov/. To lose one pound per week (on average), decrease the number of calories you have a day by 500. You can do this through diet and exercise.
Do not try to make big changes in your diet. Small changes can help you have a healthier, lower calorie diet as well as help you keep these changes for a lifetime of good health. Your diet should include a variety of healthy foods such as:
- whole grains
- low-fat dairy
- an assortment of lean meat, fish, poultry, beans, peas, lentils, and nuts.
Do Not Skip Meals
Feeling hungry? Try eating 4-5 small meals a day. Not only will you feel full, but it will also help to keep your blood sugar under control.
Journal Your Progress
Keep a food journal and write down everything that you eat and drink. This will help you to be more aware of what you eat and drink. You can also enter your food and drinks into the Super Tracker at the MyPlate.gov website to see how many calories and nutrients you are taking in every day.
Listen to Your Body
Know when you are feeling real hunger and when you feel comfortably full but not to the point of feeling “stuffed”.
If you have questions or concerns about your child’s weight, set up a meeting with your child’s doctor. At the visit, your child’s doctor will:
- review his/her growth
- screen for any weight-related problems
- help you take small steps toward adopting healthy lifestyle behaviors for your family.
Many times successful weight loss for kids involves the whole family. You are the role model! For resources, visit our Kids Corner in our Healthy Weight Center.
Do Not Get Discouraged! Healthy weight loss does not overnight. But small changes in your child’s diet can have BIG results for the health of you and your family.
For more information:
Go to the Healthy Weight Center health topic.