Over the past 2 weeks, we have talked about how our body adapts to weight loss and why it makes it difficult for us to achieve long-term results. Today, I would like to go over some tips to help us reach our goals permanently. The most important thing is to make changes that you can stick to.
1. Diet – When people ask me what the best diet is, I like to respond with “unless you have a health condition that requires a certain diet, the best diet is the one that you can stick to.” Fad diets are called fad diets for a reason. They become really popular because people experience great results, usually very quickly. Typically, these types of diets are either very drastic or completely exclude certain food groups. For most people, these diets are not something that can be done for a very long time. If a fad diet is something that you need to kick off your weight loss journey, then by all means go for it. But please do not do these diets under the illusion that you will not have to continue the hard work in order to keep the weight off after you finish it. I myself have tried many of the popular diets out there including keto, low carb, vegan, paleo, and others. I am one of those people who get bored with specific diets after a time, mainly due to the foods that are excluded from them. Trying different diets was a way for me to keep myself motivated while I experimented with new foods and recipes that were outside my normal diet. I am telling you all of this because I have experienced the positives and negatives for many of these diets. Even with all of the different diets, conflicting information about nutrition, and common misconceptions surrounding diet and weight loss, dieting can basically be distilled down into one thing: Calories in vs Calories out.
2. Calories In vs Calories out – Yes, this is an oversimplification of the mechanisms behind weight loss.And when people are further into their weight loss journey things tend to get more complicated than this one statement. BUT in general, this is a very good place to start. I am not saying that you need to track every single one of your calories on an app but becoming conscious about our food intake is an important step. This actually takes us back around to metabolism again. Every one of us burns a certain number of calories per day, even if you lay in bed for 24 hours straight. Monitoring your caloric intake, even for just a few days, can give you some insight on how many calories you average per day Combine tracking our intake with occasional weigh-ins can tell us where our caloric maintenance range is. There are also equations and apps that can help you calculate a ball-park number for what your total daily caloric expenditure is.
I hope you got something useful from reading and check back next week for more insights on achieving weight loss healthily and permanently.
Joshua White PA-C