Though many companies who sell weight loss pills and supplements would like the public to believe otherwise, there is no magic pill that anyone can take to successfully lose and keep weight off, regardless of the empty promises they make. The rules of losing weight and keeping it off are straight forward and fool proof.
In order to lose weight the first rule of thumb is you must consume less calories than you burn. To do this successfully, people need to get real and honest about what they are putting into their mouths. Keeping a food journal or diary for a solid week is a great way to see where basic changes need to be made as you move forward in your goal. Keep track of every morsel you consume and at what time of day or night you consume it. It is also a good idea to record how you are feeling each time.
You have to burn approximately 3500 calories in order to lose one pound of fat. While this may seem astronomical, it truly can be accomplished with determination and effort. To do this successfully you need to figure out a few things (after you have recorded your food habits in your journal).
First, determine what a healthy weight is for your height and body frame. Then, calculate your Basal Metabolic Rate or BMI. This is the number of calories you need to take in to sustain your normal bodily functions like eating, breathing and digestion. To do this simply Google “BMI calculator.” By inputting your gender, height, weight and age, the calculator will tell you approximately how many calories you should take in to maintain the weight you should be at. For example, a 37 year old female, who is 5’5 and weighs 180 pounds, should take in 1568 calories. Use your number when determining how many calories you need to lose weight.
Next, figure out what your activity level is and then find ways to increase it. To burn calories you have to exercise. The recommended amount of exercise varies, but in general 50 minutes four to five times a week is a good place to begin. This exercise needs to be physical activity that will increase your heart rate at least moderately if you want to burn calories and lose pounds. Research how many calories you currently burn doing everyday activities such as walking or sitting using a calorie counter on the internet. Input the activity, your weight and the minutes you performed the activity and the calculator will roughly tell you how many calories are burned. A ten minute brisk walk will burn 100 calories!
It’s that simple. Making simple changes to your diet and increasing activity is the only safe, effective way to lose weight. If your calorie requirement is 1500 and you resume to burning 500 calories per day, the result will be a weight loss of 2 pounds per month. For faster weight loss, decrease your calories and increase your activity level (calories burned).