Weight loss diets are very popular these days. Diet by itself is not enough to make you loose the extra weight and get you in the healthy weight range though. That is why overweight and obesity are on the rise. There are certain lifestyle changes that are necessary to implement in order to shed those extra pounds. Without making these changes no diet will work.
Lifestyle is a way of living based on identifiable patterns of behaviour based on an individual's choice. Hence like in many other situations, weight loss is all about the choices we make in life.
Leave aside the social aspects and aesthetics, the health risks associated with overweight and obesity are by far more important. Cardiovascular disease, diabetes type two with the plethora of all the health risks and even cancer are medical conditions more likely to develop when the weight is above the normal range.
There are few lifestyle changes that are essential in loosing weight. These changes, seem difficult to implement in the beginning but are easy to maintain and adopt as a new lifestyle once started on the path that leads to a better self. So here you are:
1. Lower your daily caloric intake (eat less). From Physics, any thermal system is in balance when the caloric input equals the energetic expenditure. Energy in, energy out, as simple as this. For humans, this translates in no weight gain or weight loss when the food you ingest equals the energy used for normal body functioning. This balance is estimated by the basal metabolic rate (BMR) and together with the level of physical activity determines the daily caloric needs. To loose weight, aim at 5 to10% less calories than required for normal functioning.
2. Compensate the lower caloric intake by better quality food. Organic food is the obvious choice. It is proven by laboratory tests that organic food has higher nutritional content than regular food. For example, an organic cabbage contains some 60% more Calcium than the regular, chemical boosted one. Meat is no different. Consider the better taste and the lack of chemicals, hormones and antibiotics and the choice is easy. Sure, organic food costs more, but eating less will insure your budget is not affected.
3. Increase the physical activity. This is the second part of the energetic equation. Resistance training like weight lifting, push-ups, squats and alike are by far more efficient than cardiovascular exercise. Resistance training raises your metabolism and keeps it there for hours after you stop the exercise. This is without the wear and tear and long hour sessions associated with cardiovascular exercise. Twenty minutes of resistance training daily go a long way.
4. Reduce the stress in your life. There is a mean connection between weight gain and stress. When stressed, we miss the body signals that we ate enough. Or maybe we eat more than we need like others are smoking to cope with this stress. Meditation is the mind work out for your mind. Like physical workout for your body, it helps your mind deal with the more difficult situations in life. It raises your threshold to stress if you wish. It also makes you more aware so you live your life other than on automatic pilot. Hence you will pay more attention to your body signals.
There are tools that make these changes easier to implement in your life. And remember, life is a journey and you have the choice to travel in style or not.
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