Forget those liquid only, banana, or protein fad diets. Give up the idea of fasts or cleanses to lose weight. They may seem like easy ways to lose weight. However, healthy ways to lose weight do not include such extremes as crash diets or over-the-top exercise regimens.
Rather, healthy ways to lose weight are all about gradual changes in your eating and exercise habits.
If you have not exercised seriously in years, the best way to lose weight should not involve suddenly running miles a day or slogging it out on the treadmill for an hour. Your body cannot take this sudden change. Moreover, these are not among the healthy ways to lose weight! What is more likely to occur than weight loss is an injury that may take weeks to heal.
Besides injuries, these extremes will leave you disappointed and sap your motivation to continue. Small steps result in small victories which continue to fuel your resolve to lose weight. The best way to lose weight takes this into account and avoids disappointment.
Starvation diets severely restrict calories and often deprive the body of nutrients, minerals and vitamins necessary for good health. These restrictive diets are not the best way to lose weight. They can result in deficiencies and illness.
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What are best, easy and healthy ways to lose weight?
It’s simple mathematics. Eat a balanced diet but eat smaller portions. Your body needs a certain amount of calories to function. If you do not use up those calories, they are stored as fat. By cutting what you eat, you are ensuring that you burn up the calories you’ve consumed. If you eat more food than you burn up, you’ll gain weight. If you eat less food than you burn up, you’ll lose weight. So, one of the easy ways to lose weight is to reduce calories and, at the same time, increase movement.
It’s important to make changes gradually. You may not think so, but small changes over time can make a significant difference. Little things like cutting out cream in your coffee or having juice mixed half and half with water or passing up desserts once a week can each help you lose five pounds a year. These are easy ways to lose weight.
Don’t skip meals. People who skip breakfast only end up adding a calorie-laden snack at mid-morning because they are hungry for carbohydrates and a quick energy fix. Instead, make time for breakfast. Add quick energy sensible snack mid-morning and mid-afternoon. Meanwhile, cut back on meal-time carbohydrate intake.
Weight loss is all about changing the way you eat and move. It’s not a once-in-a-lifetime event. It’s a permanent change to your eating and exercising habits. Weight-loss goals are often expressed in weeks, or months. Sustaining that weight loss should be a permanent change. Without a weight loss sustaining plan, you will return to those old habits that enabled weight gain. While overweight and obesity are not good for your body, yo-yo weight loss-gain isn’t either.
If you increase movement in your life and continue eating the same number of calories, you will lose weight. It’s a mathematical certainty. In just the same way, if you cut caloric intake but leave level of exercise the same you will lose weight. However, combining the two is a doubly effective weight loss plan. Increasing movement is not just about sweating with the jocks at the gym. Sure! That’s great if the gym is your thing. However, choose any exercise you enjoy. For example: you might go for a bike ride or a walk or swim some laps or exercise to “Sweatin’ to the Oldies” or go square dancing. It’s all movement. So it’s all good.
If you hate to exercise alone why not join a walking or running group or take up a sport? Find something you enjoy doing at a cost you can afford and make a commitment to yourself to become more active. Why not choose an activity and time to do this as a family project?
No time you say? There are easy ways to lose weight by incorporating movement into your schedule. Here are some suggestions:
- Cycle, run, jog, roller blade or walk to work. If this isn’t feasible because of the distance of your commute, ride the bus or subway and get off a few stops before and walk the rest of the way or park your car a few blocks from work and go the rest of the way on foot.
- Use one of your coffee breaks or part of your lunch break to go for a walk or hit the gym.
- On week-ends, do errands on foot or cycle. Leave the car in the garage.
- Join a team or take up a sport. Find one you enjoy!
- Build in family activity time after work, after dinner, or on the week-end. Book this time into your calendar the same way you build in other appointments.
- Take the stairs instead of the elevator or escalator.
- Watch TV while using a stationary bike, a rowing machine, or a treadmill.