Millions of people all over the world are overweight or obese and the trend is rising. As such, there are many weight loss products in the market that promise you fast results. You would think that with these many products in the market, there wouldn’t be so many overweight people around, right? Well, the increasing number of overweight or obese people speaks for itself. It indicates that most weight loss products are not as effective as they claim to be.
Obviously, any product is only as good as the person using it. Even the best weight loss product will not help you lose weight if you do not follow instructions. Nevertheless, you should beware of over-the-top claims and extremely high cost because there is no magic to losing weight.
As a weight loss coach, I have noticed a few fatal flaws in some popular weight loss products nowadays and I’d like to share them with you.
1. Replacements for normal food
You can find many weight loss programs that use meal replacements or appetite suppressors that come in various forms like diet drinks, shakes or pills. They work to stop your cravings and act as meal substitutes. Can you lose weight? Yes, you can. But the disadvantage of this method is that once you stop taking these meal replacements or appetite suppressors, you eventually regain your lost weight after a short while because your stomach starts feeling empty and you go back to your past eating habits.
2. Exercise minus correct diet
It is a must to exercise not just to lose weight but to be healthy. Exercise is an excellent fat burner because it increases activity which in turn increases metabolism. Many weight loss programs entail going to the gym regularly. This is an admirable practice but let’s face it, hardly anyone can maintain a gym routine for life. As you go through changes in life, you eventually will not be able to exercise the way you could in the past. And once you stop exercising, you will regain your lost weight. That’s why it’s important not only to exercise but also have a correct diet that ensures you stay at your lower weight even if you stop going to the gym.
3. Unnatural and risky methods
By ‘unnatural’ I mean something out of the ordinary like weight loss surgery or weight loss drugs. These synthetic methods have inherent risks because they are not the natural way your body loses weight, not to mention they can be very expensive. As a weight loss coach, I do not recommend the use of drugs or surgical procedures to lose weight.
4. Unproven and hard-to-believe products
I have come across strange weight loss products like eyeglasses that suppress appetite, diet patches, weight loss earrings and other weird stuff. These have one thing in common – the lack of a proven track record. So my advice to you is to stay away from these so-called weight loss products.
To me, the best way to lose weight is the natural way, without synthetic foods, unnatural methods, drugs or heavy exercise. It comprises of the correct diet, simple exercise and a proper lifestyle. When these three components are done correctly, you will naturally lose weight by burning fat.
There is one subtle enemy of weight loss that many people are not even aware of. I’m talking about stress. I had a weight loss student who suddenly stopped losing weight halfway through her weight loss program with me although she was following all my instructions.
When I probed a little deeper, I discovered that at that period of time, she was experiencing a lot of stress at work. And it was the stress that hindered her weight loss. When I coached her to deal with her stress, she could resume losing weight again.
It’s so common to find people who ‘comfort eat’ i.e. they eat to comfort themselves. This comfort eating is particularly acute during times of stress. “I’m stressed, therefore I eat.”
Here are a few proven ways to manage stress that I share with my weight loss students.
1. Distract yourself by giving yourself something to do whenever you feel like binging. This way, you will postpone your instant gratification when hunger hits. Tell yourself you’ll wait 10 to 30 minutes to eat. Chances are good if your cravings are only stress-related, they’ll disappear when you allow yourself to become distracted.
2. Keep a food journal of what you eat each day. Knowing you have to write down every snack or nibble can be a good way to remind yourself to think before eating.
3. Drink lots of water. Keeping yourself hydrated not only increases your metabolism (which boosts weight loss), but also keeps yourself feeling full.
4. Be accountable to a friend – preferably one who is also given to comfort eating. When you feel like eating, write him/her a quick note or make a phone call.
5. Don’t let yourself go hungry or tired. Eat regular, healthy snacks to maintain your energy level. Skipping meals while under stress only prompts you to eat more, and unhealthily, when you do get around to eating.
6. Post some reminder messages wherever you’re likely to see them when stress-related cravings begin. Use any message that works for you. Examples can be, “Are you sure you want to do this?” or “Think before you eat.”
7. Make it inconvenient for you to get certain foods (those snacks that tend to make you put on weight). Never go shopping while hungry and always make a list of food items prior to shopping; bring home only what you feel good about eating.
8. De-stress by doing something you enjoy regularly. Whether it’s 10 minutes to reflect and relax, or whether it’s some fun activity that will revitalize you, it’s critical to do it. Health is not just physical; mental well-being is just as important, you deserve to mentally de-stress everyday!
Dieting without the knowing the right dish to cook is like finding something in a very dark place. Mistakes can be easily made without proper guidance. That is why there are numerous weight loss menu plans that can last for weeks to help you get things going with your diet. These dishes are intended to help you lose weight by providing low calories.
The most important meal of the day should be packed with energy boosting meals. It is crucial to make yourself full during breakfast to help you get through the entire day. One example of a healthy breakfast meal is one split of toasted English muffin topped with any type of cheese. Broil the muffin until the cheese melts. You can have the muffin with half a grapefruit and a dash of brown sugar.
If you want a fiber enriched breakfast, grab one and one-fourth cups of your bran flake cereal and add a cup of fat-free milk to it. Top the cereal with some citrus fruits like oranges or graprfruit to make it tastier.
Spinach salad is a very healthy lunch dish. Create this dish by topping three to four cups of baby spinach with a piece of sliced hard-boiled egg. In addition, you can add tuna chunks, five pieces of thinly sliced mushrooms, a third of a cup of croutons, three slices of red onion and one-fourth cup of feta cheese. Toss the ingredients together and drizzle with your favorite dressing preferably a balsamic vinegar and olive oil.
If you want a simpler meal during lunch, a sandwich is perfect. A simple raisin wholemeal bread sandwich with organic peanut butter and honey should help you get through to dinner. Have this sandwich with a refreshing cup of fat-free milk.
It is very important to eat a light meal during dinner. One perfect example of a healthy dinner meal is the Savory Asian Patty, which you can easily store in the freezer. The ingredients of the dish are:
• One pound turkey breast
• Eight pieces of diced water chestnuts
• Two garlic cloves, minced
• Four pieces of thinly sliced onions
• Half a cup of unsweetened applesauce
• Four tablespoons of soy sauce.
Proceed by mixing all the ingredients together and making four patties. You only need one of the patties so you can save the three for later. Coat a nonstick skillet with cooking spray and cook the patty over medium heat. Make sure that both sides of the patty are cooked thoroughly.
Serve the patty with three-fourths cup of brown rice, a teaspoon of rice vinegar and soy sauce and half a teaspoon of sesame oil. Furthermore, you can add two cups of steamed broccoli and a cup of berries to make it a complete meal.
Cravings are particularly hard to control when you are not used to dieting. Changing the way you eat is probably one of the hardest parts of losing weight. Remember that you don’t have to starve yourself during any kind of diet. Eat a snack in case your cravings start to help you through the day. But remember to make your snacks healthy. So no chocolate chip cookies or chips. Instead, opt for soaked almonds or fat-free yogurt.
Another important aspect of a weight loss menu plan is taking multivitamin and mineral supplements. Taking 250 to 400 milligrams of calcium and magnesium daily is recommended since you are most likely not going to get enough of it by slashing your food consumption substantially.
These meals will greatly reduce your carbohydrates and simple sugars, the stuff which contribute most to excessive weight gain.
Online Weight Loss Programs: How They Work
Many people who want to lose weight find they can hardly afford the time to join a gym or go for meetings regularly. If that is the case, you may be thinking that achieving your weight loss goal is simply out of reach, but it doesn’t have to be.
You can join an online weight loss program. Online weight loss programs are similar to many locally operated weight loss programs. Often times, the only difference is that you do not get to meet with group leaders or other members in person. If you are searching for a way to incorporate weight loss into your busy schedule, you can consider an online weight loss programs. These online weight loss programs are perfect for those who regularly find themselves pressed for time.
It is possible to find free online weight loss programs; however, you will likely find that the best ones require the paying of a membership fee. Although each weight loss program is likely to vary, many have affordable monthly membership rates, some as low as five dollars a month. It is also possible to find weight loss programs that are designed for women, men, those over the age of fifty, and so forth.
If you have never joined an online weight loss program before, you may be wondering a little bit more about how they work. A few of the many member perks that you may get, when joining an online weight loss program, are outlined below.
One of the many perks or benefits to joining an online weight loss program is access to workout or exercise information. Many online weight loss programs will give you access to their website (or an exclusive section of their website), which should have exercises and workouts outlined for you. You should be able to get detailed directions for those exercises, pictures, and possibly even sample videos. Some more expensive online weight loss programs will give you access to customize workouts, ones which focus on the areas of your body that you would most like to improve.
Another member perk or feature that you should get access to with an online weight loss program is that of healthy recipes. Healthy eating is an important part of weight loss. That is why many online weight loss programs have a healthy eating section. Not only may you get healthy food recipes, but you may also get moneysaving coupons, as well as cooking and food shopping tips.
As previously stated, often times the only difference between a locally operated weight loss program and an online program is the fact that you do not get to meet with the group leaders or other group members in person. With online weight loss programs, you may not get in-person contact, but you may still be able to communicate. Many online weight loss programs have online message boards for their members to communicate with each other.
As a reminder, it is important to remember that not all online weight loss programs are the same. Despite the possibility of a variance, you should find that most online weight loss programs are more than worth your money, especially if you regularly find yourself pressed for time.
If you want to lose weight, all you need to do is burn off more calories than you put into your body. But when it comes to increasing metabolism, most people are only too familiar with exercises. There’s another way to increase metabolism that many people either forget or are not aware of – eating right.
Here are 5 simple ways to increase your metabolism through what you eat.
1. Don’t Skip Breakfast
The morning meal jump starts your metabolism and helps to prevent bingeing later in the day. Your breakfast should be something solid. Just drinking a cup of coffee does not count. The caffeine and added sugar may give you an energy spike and suppress your appetite for a little while but there are two problems with only drinking coffee for breakfast. First, the caffeine dehydrates your body. Second, drinking coffee will not keep your stomach full enough and will lead to severe hunger such that you will be more likely to overeat later.
Breakfast should include complex carbohydrates like whole grain (granola or oatmeal), along with some protein and fat (low-fat yogurt or milk) which will keep your energy levels constant and hunger in check.
2. Eat more often
Get into the habit of eating every two to three hours or at least five times a day. Eating frequently stabilizes blood sugar, when blood sugar drops too low you want to eat…a lot. By keeping your blood sugar stable you can control your appetite and keep you metabolic rate high.
When you go many hours without eating your body will compensate by slowing down metabolism to conserve energy…this effect hurts your weight loss efforts.
3. Eat protein at every meal
Protein will help to reduce your appetite as it takes more energy and time to digest and in effect you feel full longer than if you eat carbohydrates alone. Research shows that eating more protein can help you lose weight without cutting calories.
Here are some protein possibilities:
Turkey on whole wheat; hummus and pita; vegetarian chili; fruit and nuts; or protein snack bars that contain 12 or more grams of protein.
4. Snack correctly
Many of us grab a snack for quick energy when we are feeling tired. But do not confuse true hunger with fatigue. If you are feeling tired go for a 15-20 minute brisk walk. This will raise your heart rate and give you a boost of energy. Then drink a large glass of cool water.
If you are truly hungry, have a protein and complex carbohydrate rich snack like eggs, cheese or whole wheat crackers.
5. Consume enough for your body’s needs
Eating too little slows your body’s metabolism the same way eating to infrequently does. If you want to lose weight, do not slash your calories too drastically. Instead, cut out the sugars in your diet – things like soda, juice, packaged goods or candy. Also, reduce processed foods as much as possible because processed foods tend to be high in fat and calories and low in vitamins, minerals and fiber.
Actually, losing weight is more like a long-distance race than a sprint. To lose weight the right way (such that it stays off), you need to be patient and put in some effort. But since we are so accustomed to getting things instantly, many people resort to rapid weight loss practices and programs which may not be as effective as these people are led to believe they are.
Fad diets are one of these rapid weight loss practices which may not be all they claim to be if you research them properly. These fad diet programs, as scientific research shows, are only good while they last. Once you stop the diet, rapid weight loss often results in rapid weight gain. people who undergo low carbohydrate or low calorie diets normally revert back to old eating habits simply because human beings cannot actually live on with this type of diet for the rest of their lives.
Now there is also scientific research showing that rapid weight loss does not imply you are losing unwanted excess fat; it is actually water that is lost by following rapid weight loss practices. This could cause alarm but actually, water lost is regained very quickly. So there is actually zero net weight lost after all. So you should not be so gullible to believe the advertising claims of some diet pills out there in the market, especially those which claim to help you lose a whopping amount of fat in a short time. They will only dehydrate the body.
Another rapid weight loss product out in the market is the slimming soap. Claiming that these soaps are made from a unique concoction of rare chinese herbs and seaweed, they seemingly help people shed off body fats by emulsifying them upon application while taking a bath. Some are even specialized like those which promise to give the user “beautiful thighs”. The ingredients may claim to improve the quality of the skin but no research has come up yet which proves the efficacy of these ingredients in emulsifying excess body fats.
One more rapid weight loss product out there in the market promises to suppress hunger and at the same time help increase the body’s metabolic rate, accelerate healing and reduce body pains. They are called magnetic weight loss earrings.
The secret of this set of earrings is in the magnet, so it says. Wearing them near the ears balances the magnetism in the body therefore one will experience all the above mentioned effects. Again there is nothing in medical journals to back up these claims. Though buying a set may not kill a person, it’s probably not a wise investment.
As a weight loss coach, I would advise you to stay away from these fad methods to lose weight. Stick to a method that is natural and proven to work. One such program is called Healthpointe 2.0. It has been in the market for about 30 years, originally from the USA and used in obesity clinics. Thousands of people have experienced positive and permanent results in their weight loss efforts through Healthpointe 2.0.
In the past, being overweight or obese was considered a physical condition. But today we know the deadly effects of being overweight, which include a significantly higher risk of a variety of sicknesses like heart disease, stroke, kidney failure, diabetes, hypertension, arthritis etc. As a result, the WHO has now classified obesity as a chronic disease and no longer just a physical condition. Sadly, obesity continues to be a serious problem and is predicted to reach epidemic levels by the year 2020.
This is why weight loss is so important especially in the times we live in today.
The quick weight loss methods which have spread like fire these days do not provide lasting results. More often than not, dieting methods which involve dietary drinks, foods and supplement or pills do not work. If they do, the results are just temporary.
It is better to rely on a natural method of weight loss that will provide permanent results. You have to set realistic goals and not expect to lose a lot of weight in a short span of time.
Here is how you can lose those unwanted pounds the natural way:
1. Do not starve your self
The key to natural weight loss is this: Do NOT diet.
You may seem happy and feel that you are losing those unwanted flabs on your belly and thighs by skipping meals. But remember that this would not last long. Your body cannot tolerate having insufficient food to provide the energy that you needeveryday.
If you start skipping one or two meals a day, your body will go into starvation mode and eventually resist losing weight because it will try to preserve itself by holding on to its fat storage.
2. Have a healthy breakfast
Mothers always say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Have a healthy meal in the morning to jump-start your metabolism.
Your food intake after you wake up will be used to burn fat all day long.
3. Eat small, healthy meals frequently
Five small-serving snacks per day is better than three heavy meals. Eating more frequently, and in small servings, can prevent over-eating. This will also increase your metabolism and make calories burn faster.
4. Set a realistic goal for your weight loss
It is virtually impossible for you to lose 40 pounds in 2 weeks (not to mention it is physically dangerous). Have a mindset that you want to lose weight naturally and keep it off for the rest of your life.
Once you have decided on a weight loss plan, stick to it and make sure that you follow your own set of dieting rules.
5. Drink lots of water
Your body needs sufficient water to burn fat and keep your cells hydrated and healthy.
6. Avoid too much sugar
Plan your meals around lots of fruits and vegetables, some bread, rice or pasta for that carbo fix that you need, plus lean meat and protein rich-foods. Sweets, sodas and pastries should be once-in-a-while indulgences only.
7. Watch your fat intake
You should consume the right combination of different types of fats to keep yourself healthy. There are polyunsaturated, monounsaturated and saturated fats.
The polyunsaturated fats are considered healthy fats. Virgin olive oil, sunflower seed and canola oil are good sources of these types of fat. Likewise, deep sea fish oil from Tuna, Salmon and Mackerel have omega-3 fatty acids which are good for the heart.
Leave your car at home if you are only going a few blocks from home, take the stairs instead of the elevator, jog, cycle or skate. Take up these activites and do other home chores if you are too lazy to go to the gym. Make sure that you do this regularly and you will not even notice that you are already shedding pounds with these mundane activities.
Finally, go slow. If you have already lost 5 or 6 pounds, give yourself a break then try to lose the next 5 pounds.
Eat healthy, drink lots of water, have enough sleep and exercise. These simple steps will enable you to lose weight naturally.
Most people who desire to lose weight immediately assume that they must go on a diet and skip meals. This is not be the best solution to your weight problem. As a matter of fact, depending upon the amount you reduce in your food consumption, it may even be dangerous to your health. So how do you lose weight effectively and safely? Here are a few points you should think about when trying to slim down:
Many people think that cutting down the calories would be enough to shed off their unwanted excess weight. This is likely because of the popular advertising that promotes low-calorie foods and beverages. What people don’t know is that this may be dangerous because when they decrease their calorie intake way below the required levels, there is not much energy in the body to facilitate metabolism of fat. Hence your body will run at a very slow pace resulting in fatigue, sickness and a weak immune system.
Your body compensates for a low-calorie diet by burning muscle. People on this type of diet who revert back to their old eating habits wind up gaining back some if not all the weight they had shed. This would consist mainly of fats. And since fats have more volume per mass than muscle, they wind up having the same weight as before but look fatter. In slimming down, your ought to keep in mind that you should lose excess body fats not body muscle.
The right thing to do is eat little meals at more frequent intervals. This way your body won’t think that it is being starved and won’t store food as fat.
Losing weight doesn’t have to mean sacrifice and suffering. It really means living a more full and healthy life where you do not have to feel bad about yourself and how you look or are prevented from doing certain things you wish to do because of being overweight. Slimming down may entail little adjustments plus some discomforts, but remember the old saying that goes, “no pain, no gain.” Once you successfully lose weight, it will all be worth it.
Have you heard about people who have lost lots of weight by simply switching to diet soda or walking a few minutes each day. The reason why these work is that they are small habits that contribute to a big difference and increase your metabolism over time. You will make weight loss quicker and easier by increasing your metabolic rate and burning more calories.
1) Move More
Sedentary people burn about one-third less calories per day. By simply taking every opportunity to move, you can make quite a dramatic difference to the amount of calories you burn in one day. Small movements will add up over time to lots of calories. The trick is to keep moving throughout your day.
Take every opportunity to move. Here’s some ideas for burning extra calories:
Tap your feet
Swing your legs
Stand up and stretch
Move your head from side to side
Pace up and down
Use the restroom upstairs
Park in the furthest corner of the parking lot
Stand up when you’re on the phone and step from side to side
Clench and release your muscles
You get the idea.
2) Eat Little and Often
Evidence suggests that eating small meals every 2-4 hours will keep your metabolism burning faster than larger, less frequent meals. When you eat small amounts often your body is constantly working to digest and absorb food which requires energy.
3) Eat Healthy Fats
It’s a fallacy to believe that in order to lose weight you have to abstain from all fats. In actual fact, your body needs fats to work efficiently. By consuming several servings of healthy fats every day you will actually increase your calorie burning potential.
Try incorporating fats like Flaxseed oil, hempseed oil, olive oil, avocados, salmon, albacore tuna, nuts and seeds into your diet daily.
4) Drink Cold Water
Evidence shows that your body might expend more calories trying to raise the temperature of cold water to normal body temperature than when drinking hot beverages. Furthermore, being well hydrated will help your body’s metabolic processes burn quicker.
5) Exercise With Weights
Training with weights boosts your metabolism in a number of ways. By lifting weights you will build muscle tissue. And muscle tissue is metabolically active, so it burns calories even when at rest and helps to increase fat-burning enzymes in your body.
6) Spice up
Eating hot spices might speed up your metabolism. Just half a teaspoon of cinnamon per day can help boost metabolism and keep blood sugar levels in check. Can’t stand the thought of cinnamon in your morning coffee? Spice up with cayenne, crushed red pepper or wasabi.
7) Eat More Protein
Protein requires a more complex chemical breakdown by your body in order to be digested and used as fuel. For example, 100 calories of protein may take up to 30 calories to process. Protein also takes longer to digest and helps to stabilize blood sugar for longer periods of time and this can help you to not overeat later in the day. Eat a portion of protein at every meal and as part of your snacks and you will increase the total number of calories you burn each day.
The tragedy of our times is that we are living a more and more sedentary lifestyle. But our bodies are not designed to be that way. Instead, our bodies are designed for movement. However, with increased automation and a hands-off lifestyle, we are increasingly passive in everything we do. This has resulted in a lack of exercise. Today, if we want exercise, we have to seek it out.
In fact, health experts insist that obesity problem is probably caused at least as much by lack of physical activity as by eating too much. Hence, it is important that people move around.
However, according to experts, exercise alone is not very efficient. They contend that if you just exercise and do not change your diet, you may lose a few pounds (or kg) but will not experience substantial or permanent weight loss.
So the key is to exercise regularly and change your eating habits. The more regularly you exercise, the easier it is to maintain your weight. Here is what to do every day to make sure that you get the exercise you need.
1. Get quality Zzzs.
Make sure that you get adequate sleep. Good sleep habits are conducive to exercise, experts point out. If you feel worn out during the day, you are less likely to get much physical activity during the day.
In addition, there is evidence that people who are tired tend to eat more, using food as a substance for the rest they need.
It is probably the easiest exercise program of all. In fact, it may be all you ever have to do, according to some professional advices of some health experts.
Gradually build up to at least 30 minutes of brisk walking five times a week. Brisk walks themselves have health and psychological benefits that are well worth the while.
3. Walk the treadmill
When the weather is bad, you might not feel like going outdoors. But if you have a treadmill in the television room, you can catch up on your favorite shows while you are doing your daily good turn for your weight-maintenance plan.
Most of us watch television anyway, and indoor exercise equipment enables anyone to turn a sedentary activity into a healthy walk.
4. Seize the time
Excuses aside, lack of time is certainly a limiting factor in most lifestyles. That is why health experts suggest a basic guideline for incorporating exercise into your schedule.
Get as much exercise as you can that feels good without letting it interfere with your work or family life. If you need to, remind yourself that you are preventing many health problems when you prevent weight gain; and keeping your health is a gift to your family as well as yourself.