Published on Aug 22, 2014 and last reviewed on Nov 11, 2022 - 4 min read
The successful weight loss program focuses on a healthy, calorie-controlled diet and increased physical activity.
Many diets, weight loss programs, and other interventions promise quick and easy weight loss. But a successful weight loss program focuses on a healthy, calorie-controlled diet and increased physical activity or exercise. One must permanently change the lifestyle and adopt healthy habits to gain long-term weight loss.
Being overweight or obesity is a growing problem in most developing and developed countries. Initially, this problem emerged after the fifth decade of life, but now it is seen from the second decade itself. The magnitude of this problem is consistently underestimated as, most of the time, the complications of being overweight bring the patient to medical attention.
Overweight is when an individual's BMI (body mass index) is more than 24. Hence the best tool to detect obesity is calculating the body mass index in all patients coming for a consultation, irrespective of their problem. People are more inclined towards rapid results, but adverse effects are associated with it. The concept of physiological weight reduction must be understood. Weight reduction, just like weight gain, should be gradual and sustained. The basic principle in weight reduction is: to burn more calories than you consume but not overdo it.
Set Realistic Goals: Most of the time, lifestyle changes can reduce weight. But the goal has to be realistic. People should have a goal of reducing 0.3 to 0.5 kg per month. Else the person may get demotivated.
Diet and Exercise: Among lifestyle changes, diet and exercise are the pillars of weight reduction. Though both are important, emphasis on exercise should be given more as it helps improve stamina, provides a sense of well-being and good cardiac status, and improves cholesterol and blood sugar control. Exercise must be aerobic,i.e., brisk walking, jogging, running, cycling, swimming, and playing outdoor games like football and badminton. It should be started gradually, initially at low intensity and around ten to fifteen minutes per day, and then gradually increase the intensity and duration of exercise.
Exercise Regime: Exercise has to be done daily. If not possible, an exercise regime must be followed at least five days a week. Never rest your body for more than two days.
1. Make Sure You Are Self-Motivated: Long-term weight loss is time-consuming and requires lots of effort. Make sure you put on healthy changes permanently, such as eating habits and exercising. Ask yourself:
2. Find Your Inner Motivation: No one can help you lose weight but yourself. Understand what will drive you to stick to your weight loss program. Make a list of things that motivates you, and keep you focused. Find ways that can keep you motivated during moments of temptation or stress. If thoroughly motivated, you will be willing to adapt to a healthy diet and exercise regime without pushing yourself much.
3. Set a Healthy Routine: Focus on realistic goals. Work smartly, exercise daily, check your calorie intake, and walk at least 30 minutes daily.
4. Enjoy Healthy Food Habits: Adopt an eating lifestyle that promotes weight loss, lowers the total calorie intake, and focuses more on plant-based foods such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, which keeps you full and less carving. You can follow some of the tips such as:
5. Stay Active: Regular physical activity and a restricted diet can help you lose weight. Exercise helps burn excess calories that you cannot cut through diet alone. It also has numerous other health benefits, such as boosting your mind, strengthening your body, reducing blood pressure, and maintaining weight.
6. Change Your View: Habits such as a healthy diet, lifestyle, and exercise must become a part of life. Lifestyle changes come with eating habits and daily routines. Have an occasional setback but do not give up entirely after a setback. Always remember that this will change your life, and the results are worth working for.
7. Do Not Skip Meals and Eat Regularly: Skipping meals will not help you lose weight. Eating regularly helps you in burning calories faster. It also reduces the temptation to eat sugary foods.
8. Drink Plenty of Water: Drinking enough water also helps in managing weight. People often confuse thirst with hunger. They consume extra calories when a glass of water is what they need.
9. Read Food Labels: Read your food labels, and use that calorie information to determine how that food fits your daily calorie needs according to your weight loss plan.
10. Use a Smaller Plate: Using a smaller plate helps you eat smaller portions. Eat slowly and chew properly. Stop eating before you feel full, and do not overeat. It takes around 20 minutes for the stomach to tell the brain it is complete.
11. Do Not Ban Any Food: Banning your favorite food will only make you carve them more.
12. Do Not Stock Junk Food: Stocking junk foods such as biscuits, crisps, chocolates, and drinks will bring more attention to them, and you will end up eating them.
13. Limit Alcohol: Drinking alcohol can contribute to weight gain. A glass of wine equals as many calories as a piece of chocolate.
It is natural for those trying to lose weight to lose it very quickly. But people who lose weight gradually and steadily are more successful in keeping it for long. Healthy weight loss is not just about diet or joining a program. It is about lifestyle, healthy diet patterns, and regular physical activity. Once you get the desired weight, maintain those healthy habits to attain long-term benefits. Losing weight is not easy. It takes commitment, effort, and self-motivation. Weight loss aids in various health benefits, such as it improves blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar. See weight loss as a journey and focus on the final destination. This will not only make you physically fit but will also help you live a healthier life.
To safely and effectively lose weight:
- Do not miss breakfast.
- Eat regular meals.
- Include plenty of fruits and vegetables.
- Increase activities.
- Drink plenty of water.
- Include high-fiber food.
- Read labels to keep caloric intake in check.
- Use smaller plates.
- Avoid banning foods.
- Avoid stocking junk food.
- Reduce alcohol consumption.
- Take planned meals.
To safely and easily lose weight:
- Keep healthy food around.
- Reduced processed food.
- Increase protein in the diet.
- Eliminate sugar consumption.
- Black coffee intake.
- Stay hydrated.
- Reduce high-caloric beverages.
- Avoid refined carbohydrates.
- Intermittent fasting.
- Calorie counting.
- Increasing regular cardiovascular and resistance training.
To burn fat, drink:
- Green tea.
- Lemon water.
- Ginger tea.
- Fennel water.
- Apple cider vinegar.
- Black tea.
- Ajwain water.
- Protein shakes.
- Vegetable juice.
- Cumin tea.
- Coconut water.
- Psyllium husk in water.
- Tart cherry juice.
According to studies, resting energy expenditure (the number of calories burned while still) can increase by 24 % - 30 % within 10 minutes of drinking water. Drinking water before meals can help in feeling more satisfied and aid in promoting portion control and weight loss. Adequate hydration also improves energy levels and mood.
Stopping food triggers the body into “starvation mode,” which slows down the metabolism. Slower metabolism leads to slower weight loss. Intermittent fasting, rather than complete starvation, is helpful in weight loss.
When someone starts their weight loss journey, they first start losing hard fat settled around the organs like the liver and kidneys, and then soft fat is lost from around the waistline and thighs.
Lemon contains vitamin C and antioxidants that promote good digestion. Lemon water has diuretic properties, detoxifying the body and thereby losing fat. Lemonade also promotes hydration and increases metabolism and a sense of fullness, promoting weight loss. Although there is no solid evidence proving lemonade is better than regular water. Still, it can be a great alternative to high-calorie beverages in terms of taste and calorie count.
To lose fat rapidly, include the following:
- Strength training.
- Start a high-protein diet.
- More sleep.
- Add vinegar to the diet.
- Eat healthy fats.
- Drink healthier beverages.
- Increase fiber intake.
- Reduce refined carbs.
- Drink coffee.
- High-intensity training.
- Introduce probiotics into the diet.
- Increase iron intake.
- Intermittent fasting.
The body eliminates 84 % of the burnt fat through sweat and the rest as water. The liver is the primary site for fat metabolism and is recruited only when glucose and glucagon are deficient. Fat is broken via a cascade of complex metabolism procedures which, produces two excretory byproducts- carbon dioxide (exhaled out) and water (sweated out or urinated).
The body removes a small amount of fat through the stool, but it is not an efficient way of eliminating fat. It is called steatorrhea when the stool contains an increased amount of fats. Steatorrhea is a sign of gastrointestinal malabsorption and can appear for various reasons, including pancreas and liver dysfunction.
Weight loss is seen first in the body by
- Not feeling hungry.
- Clothes fit loosely.
- Changing body measurements.
- Improvement of chronic pain.
- Improved blood pressure.
To stop fat accumulation, one should:
- Reduce foods with high glycemic indices.
- Reduce the quantity of cooking oil.
- Avoid crash dieting.
- Remove refined carbs.
- Eat more protein.
- Eat an early dinner.
- Avoid frequent snacking.
- Eat healthy fats.
- Avoid transfat.
- Increase fiber content in the diet.
Combining exercise and a calorie-deficit lifestyle helps people lose weight by burning fat. When there is loss, the body produces a chemical that induces sweating that smells like nail polish remover or is slightly fruity.
Some exercises are useful in burning belly fat, like:
- Quick pace walking.
- Group fitness exercises.
To flatten the tummy, one should:
- Circuit training.
- Abdominal muscles workout.
- Healthy food habits.
- Avoid salt.
- Drink adequate water.
- Avoid alcohol.
- Avoid stress.
- Bear crawl.
- Bicycle crunches
- Flutter kicks.
Last reviewed at:
11 Nov 2022 - 4 min read
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