Dieting and diet aids are a $41 billion/year
industry in the United States. Sadly, 95% of dieters will regain all (or
more than all) of the weight they lost. This cyclic "yo-yo dieting" is even
worse for you than never having lost the weight to begin with. The solution is a
change of mind set. Instead of treating dieting as temporary period of
deprivation to be persevered, you should make a long-term commitment to a more
healthy eating pattern. Making that decision today can improve the rest of your
life and keep those extra pounds off for good.
There are several good reasons
why attaining and maintaining a healthy body weight is worth
the effort. You will feel better in general and have more energy. You'll look
better and feel better about your appearance. You'll increase your life
expectancy by as much as 15 years. You will reduce your risk of developing every
degenerative disease (including heart disease, cancer, hypertension and type 2
To get started, you should first determine your body frame size. For females,
small, medium and large frame size corresponds to <5.25", 5.25-6", >6"
respectively. For males, small, medium and large frame size is 6.25", 6.25-7"
and >7". In order to achieve a particular healthy weight, all you have to do is
determine the weight you would like to be, and make that number of calories your daily intake.
Keeping up at least a moderate level of exercise will
help you achieve and maintain your goal.
To determine your calorie requirements to maintain a specific weight, you must also
factor in your activity level. If you are mostly sedentary and walk only
occasionally, with no exercise routine, use 1.0X the calorie requirements below. If you
are moderately active and walk or run ~20 miles per week, or the equivalent,
multiply the caloric requirement values by 1.154. If you are very active and walk
or run the equivalent of 50 miles per week, multiply the caloric intake values below by 1.385.
A sedentary person requires 13 calories/day/pound of body weight. Moderately
active people require 15, and very active people require 18 calories/day/pound
to maintain their current weight. So, for example, if you weigh 190 lbs and wish
to weigh 180 lbs, you could eat 2340 calories/day while staying mostly
sedentary, eat 2690 calories/day with a moderate activity level, or 3230
calories/day while being very active. These are simply averages, and do not take
into account body fat or muscle percentages. They are meant only as a guide.
The type of food you eat, not just # of calories, has a great impact on your
weight loss goals too, of course. By eating a diet low in carbohydrates, refined
sugar and all high glycemic load foods, you can get past your cravings
for these foods - and make sticking to your plan a lot easier. Try to keep your total carbs under 1/6 of your total calories.
Fat contains 9 calories per gram, compared to just 4 for protein and
carbohydrates. By eating foods with low caloric density (heavy but low in
calories), you will feel full on less calories. Low-starch vegetables are rich
in nutrients and fiber, are filling, and have a low glycemic load. Fiber is not
digestible, so it does not count toward your calories for the day. Food labels
often include fiber under carbohydrates, but since its' calories are
indigestible you may subtract it from the total carbs shown. Fiber is very important for
cleaning out your digestive tract and removing toxins.
Certain compounds suppress appetite by making you feel full without eating.
The famed diet aid cactus, Hoodia gordonii, contains a hunger suppressant
chemical called p57 which appears to be safe and effective, without any side
effects. This may help you attain your weight-loss dieting goals. By taking
longer to enjoy and thoroughly chew your food you will improve digestion keep
your blood sugar from spiking quite as rapidly. The benefit of this diet plan is
that it is not only effective and safe, but it does not cost you any extra, and
may in fact save you money!