How many attempts have you made at losing weight? Be honest. After all, there’s nothing to be ashamed of. In fact, if you’re a chronic dieter you’re in good company – 50% of all North American women are participating in some kind of diet at any given moment.
Here are seven problems of weight loss and solutions to help you succeed.
Problem #1: Seventy-five per cent of weight loss programs are based on restrictive diets, with a long list of foods you can’t eat. While you may start out ambitious, motivation wanes and the diet starts to feel restrictive and you give up.
Solution #1: The list of foods you’re able to eat is actually longer than the list you’re not able to eat. Enjoy four to five nutrient rich meals per day. Balanced eating results in improved weight loss, satiety and appetite control and is proven to increase your long-term weight maintenance results.
Problem #2: Some weight loss programs rely on prepackaged foods, shakes, or portion control, unrealistic lifestyle variety or lack of balanced nutrients. This is effective for losing weight in the short-term, but it doesn’t necessarily promote proper eating habits for life.
Solution #2: Eating real food and balanced meals made from the ingredients found at your local grocery store. Real-food nutrition sets you up for eating a varied diet in the real world.
Problem #3: Most diets don’t address the behaviours that contributed to over eating and weight gain in the first place.
Solution #3: Nutritional education and support encourages you to change behaviours and to make healthy lifestyle choices for life-long weight management.
Problem #4: Some weight loss programs provide recipes and meals, but leave you on your own to lose weight and work through motivation and compliance.
Solution #4: Accountability and support are paramount when losing weight and receiving personalized motivation helps you keep up with your weight loss and fitness programs.
Problem #5: Most weight loss programs emphasize calorie restriction without stressing the importance of physical activity.
Solution #5 Exercise is an important part of any weight loss and lifestyle program. Use a pedometer to track your daily steps, and then include a brisk 10,000 step walk that will increase your heart rate. Work toward a progressive exercise program that incorporates cardiovascular training, strength training, mind-body exercise and flexibility.
Problem #6: Many diet programs focus on losing weight without consideration to health. Yet many health conditions have weight components to them.
Solution #6: Your primary goal is improving your health and quality of life, through weight reduction, education and nutritional supplementation. Step out of your comfort zone and enjoy a diet that is rich in macronutrients like fruits, dark green vegetables and whole grains and lean protein that are scientifically proven to be effective at reducing specific markers of diseases, such as cardiovascular disease and inflammation.
Problem #7: Ninety per cent of all diets fail because once you achieve your weight loss goal you return to your old habits and lifestyle only to gain all of the weight back again and more. It’s extremely difficult to keep weight off after you’ve lost it without a change in your lifestyle.
Solution #7: If you want different results you need to do something different. If your previous attempts at weight loss failed then try a new approach. Without changing your behaviours and your lifestyle you can’t keep the weight off for good.
Katherine Christie is the owner of the U Weight Loss Clinic in Red Deer. For more information call 403-340-0612 or visit www.uweightloss.com.