Sunday, September 24th, 2017

8 Key Guidelines for Weight Loss

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1. Accept slow incremental progress to your goal. Rome was not built in a day, and nor will your ideal body be achieved as fast as you would like. Rapid weight loss usually means that you will end up a smaller but flabbier version of your former self because you will lose muscle tissue and tone. A more reasonable short term goal is to aim for a 5-10% weight loss, at the rate of 0.5-1.0 kg or 1-2lbs per week.

2. The goal is maintenance of weight loss. However, if you can maintain 2/3 of your weight by 9 months then you are doing well. Keeping a food, exercise and mood diary is essential. Monitoring makes you more aware of what and how much you eat, your activity levels and how your mood impacts on what you eat and do!

3. Low GI. People who are insulin resistant (e.g. people who have been told they are pre-diabetic or diabetic) should try to follow a low glycemic index (low GI) diet. This will help manage fluctuations in blood sugar and appetite. Go to www.glycemicindex.com for information on the glycemic index of a wide range of foods. Anything under a GI of 55 is considered low GI, anything between 56 – 70 is considered medium GI and anything above 70 is considered high GI.

4. Portion control. Everyone who is trying to lose weight should try to avoid sugar sweetened beverages to almost none, and sweet or sugary foods. Also, AVOID LARGE PORTION SIZES.

5. Do resistance training. Some studies suggest that resistance training may be better than aerobic exercise, so cover both bases by doing both cardiovascular exercise (exercise that gets your heart rate up), as well as weight training.

6. Match your weight loss program to you and your lifestyle. The best “diet” to go “on”, is the one you like best. If you don’t like the “diet” you will not stick to it. Find a weight loss program that fits in with your food preferences and lifestyle.  And, never blame the “diet” for your inability to lose weight, always look to yourself!

7. Consider meal replacements to get a head start. Initially, you may want to include meal replacements and combine them with meals. If this works for you, then do what you think works for you. Remember however, that you need to transition back to eating actual meals and if you have been on a high protein low carbohydrate diet you need to manage the phasing in of extra carbohydrate foods very carefully.

8. Using multiple behavioural techniques will usually optimize weight loss. Examples include eating in one place, not eating while watching TV and NEVER eating in your car.

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