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Need to lose weight? Dreading the thought of another diet program? You dont have to follow diets to lose weight. There are many people discovering this for themselves and they are the ones who are finding long term weight loss apposed to short term fixes. The key to weight loss is finding the right balance of what you eat, what you think, and what activity you do. It is not about following a perfect plan. It is impossible to be perfect every day! Finding the right balance he...

8 Ways To Create Balance To Achieve Lasting Weight Loss

8 Ways To Create Balance To Achieve Lasting Weight LossNeed to lose weight? Dreading the thought of another diet program? You dont have to follow diets to lose weight. There are many people discovering this for themselves and they are the ones who are finding long term weight loss apposed to short term fixes. The key to "weight loss" is finding the right balance of what you eat, what you think, and what activity you do. It is not about following a perfect plan. It is impossible to be perfect every day! Finding the right balance helps you to decrease your calorie intake, increase your metabolism and keeps the self-sabotage at bay. Here are 8 steps to bring more balance into all corners of your life so you too can find weight loss success.1. Eat more frequently during the day-Skipping meals or waiting too long between meals can have a negative impact on your metabolism and results in overeating later in the day. Its best to have 3 small meals and 1-2 snacks throughout the day. You will feel more satisfied and eat less. Plan to have a snack or meal every 4-5 hours.2. Watch portion sizes-Appropriate portion sizes are still quite misunderstood. Most Americans are eating 2-3 times the recommended portion sizes. Limit your grains, cereals, pastas, and rice to - 1 cup serving sizes. Keep meat, poultry and fish to 4-ounce portion sizes. Restaurants are notorious for giving extremely large servings of food. Keep this in mind when eating out. Eat half of the food on your plate or take the rest home for lunch the next day. Studies show that when people are given large portion sizes, they eat up to 56% more calories without realizing it. To add insult to injury, our portion sizes are larger than they have ever been. Start to become more aware of the portions you are served wherever you are.3. Eat the right fats-Yes some fat is important. Omega 3 fatty acids are an important strategy for weight loss success and yet most Americans are not eating enough of these healthy fats. Some reports show these fatty acids may be helpful in increasing your metabolism. They are also shown to be a wonderful mood supporter and people report significantly less food cravings and triggers to eat when they incorporate omega 3 fatty acids on a daily basis. This is especially important for any emotional eaters out there. Omega 3s are found in fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel, cod; they are also found in canola oil, walnuts, and ground flax seeds. 4. Increase fruits and vegetables-Fruits and vegetables are not only packed with important vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, they are also loaded in fiber and low in calories. Include 5-8 fruits and vegetables every day. This is one of the most important diet changes you can make. When you fill your plate up with fruits and vegetables you eat less of the higher calorie foods. For example, lets take a sample steak dinner.Original meal:8 ounce steak Whole baked potato with fixings cup steamed broccoli Meal Makeover:4 ounce steak baked potato with fixings cup steamed broccoliSide salad with mixed greens, tomatoes, and 1 tbsp light vinaigrette dressingBy changing the balance of this meal to include more vegetables while decreasing the steak and potato we saved approximately 350 calories. Saving 350 calories daily can result in almost a 1 pound weight loss per week. Small changes are the key. 5. Eat when youre hungry, stop when youre full-Our bodies have an innate weight management mechanism. It performs this task by making you feel full when it is time to stop eating. Every time you eat past full you are taking in more calories than your body needs which will result in weight gain. Start to become more aware of your internal cues for hunger and satiety (fullness). You will be amazed how many times you wait too long to eat and how often you eat past full and enter into stuffed. Its common for all of us to do this from time to time. However, its time to check in with yourself and see how often you are falling into these food patterns. Listen to your body, it will tell you when you are physically ready for food and when you are ready to stop.6. Exercise regularly-I know, this isnt anything you havent heard before but it is a crucial part of weight management. It is important to engage in regular aerobic and weight bearing activity. The aerobic exercise helps you to burn the fat and weight bearing activity increases your metabolic rate. Muscle burns up to 90% more calories than fat. The more muscle mass you have, the more calories you will burn in a day. By adding three to five pounds of muscle you could actually burn 100 - 250 additional calories a day. This combination of aerobic and weight bearing activity is what really kicks weight loss into gear.7. Limit sugar-Sugar becomes a major issue for many people wanting to lose weight. Not only does it add calories, it also causes insulin spikes leading you to store more calories as fat, it stimulates your appetite, and is a major food trigger for emotional eaters. However, it doesnt mean you need to go all or nothing. When people try to omit all sugar from their diet they can become obsessed about sugary foods and end up in a binge. Find the right balance for sugar. Avoid daily use of sugar and instead have some guiltless treats once in awhile. A little cake at a birthday party or some ice-cream with friends is a good way to incorporate sugar once in awhile to avoid the negative outcomes. 8. Pamper yourself regularly-Who wants to argue with that?! The reality is many people eat for emotional reasons. Food makes us feel good on many levels. The problem occurs when eating becomes the only coping mechanism your subconscious knows of. This is why that pesky urge to emotionally eat is so strong. It is hard to reason your way out of it. For many people food is the only thing they know that makes them feel better. When you start to do other things that make you feel good on a regular basis such as taking a hot bath, going for a walk, having a hot cup of tea; then your subconscious starts to register these activities as coping mechanisms as well. Over time this will decrease the constant urge to use food. You cant expect to have a bad day, go take a bath and not have an urge to eat. It is something you need to do regularly and something you truly enjoy so your subconscious starts to recognize it as a new choice. 2005, Meri Raffetto

How to Properly Plan for Successful Weight Loss

How to Properly Plan for Successful Weight Loss

Before taking actions in any problem we encounter, there should always be a plan first. That is, if we want to come up with positive results. You wouldnt want to enter a battle without preparing how to defeat the enemy, would you? Attempting a task without planning is like building a house without a blueprint or playing against a basketball team without planed plays with your teammates. How could you expect a good outcome?Weight loss is not at all different from the above mentioned plan-necessary situations. It also involves taking actions in proper ways that need to be perfectly planned in order to bring satisfying results. Here are the four key elements you will for making your weight loss plan a success.Setting a Goal:Okay, so your weight is somewhere around 20% above the considered normal for your height. You tend to eat more than 5 regular meals a day. Youre certain that youre obese or at least overweight. Now, the question is, where do you want your weight to be?Setting a goal is the first step in planning for weightn loss. Know what you want to accomplish. This way, the road you are taking is clear. You can keep track of your journey and whether or not you are going along in the right direction. With a goal in mind, you are always motivated to finish a task, or in some cases, to start doing it.Be Definite:Setting a specific goal when planning for "weight loss" improves your chances of success. You just need to be clear and definite with what you want to happen. Vague aims such as Id like to be healthier or I need to lose a few pounds tend to produce half-hearted efforts and poor results. Instead, state your goal distinctly: I want to lose 1 to 2 pounds this week and every week or I want to trim my waist line from 40 down to 38 by the end of the month. If you need to, write it down and put it where you will always see and read it. This way, youll always be reminded of what you want and need to accomplish by the end of the month, the week or even the day.Be Realistic:In establishing a definite weight loss goal, make sure that it is possible to accomplish first. How can a goal like Ill lose 15 lbs. in just a week happen if all of the evidence presented by research suggests that you should only burn 1 to 2 lbs in a week? Goals need to be sensible so that they are within reason to be able to obtain. What happens when you set a goal and dont reach it no matter how hard you tried because it wasnt really achievable? You will only get depressed and disappointed which are two of the psychological causes of obesity. And the problem just becomes a vicious cycle with no end to it. Strategizing:After carefully defining a goal of what you want to achieve with your weight loss efforts and keeping it in mind, the next step is planning on how to accomplish it. Planning involves proper scheduling of activities to be done throughout the whole day for a certain period of time including exercises, meals, sleeping and waking. It comprises of the time these activities should be done, the duration and in the case of eating meals, the food to be consumed and what amounts. This way, inappropriate spur-of-the-moments decisions can be avoided.A proper and effective weight loss plan consists of quality time for performing such activities. That is, allow enough time to meet the objectives correctly. For example, sleep should be scheduled to last for around 7 to 8 hours a day so that youll be able to get enough rest. Lack of sleep may cause improper eating habits the next day.Again, plans should be relatively realistic. Include only time and activities you know for yourself you can accomplish for a given period of time. Also, as you finish preparing your weight loss plan, you might want to write it down since you cant always remember when youre supposed to do each part of the plan. Post it in a place where you can always see and read it to remind you what your plans are for the day. Try your best not to skip anything in your scheduled plan so as not to ruin the effectivness of it.

Do Smoothies have to go now that Im trying to lose weight?

Do Smoothies have to go now that Im trying to lose weight?

Its summer time and the heat is on. One favorite choice of most people for beating the heat is to get a smoothie. But for people trying to lose weight and not miss out, are there any healthy options? Yes. You can make your own smoothies.From a health point of view, blended smoothies are great for a concentrated meal thats ready in a minute. You can combine a variety of fruit with some water, possibly add some dates or genuine maple syrup and make a delicious smoothie that can be enjoyed anytime as a healthy meal while on your weight loss program.Actually friends, this may be a better choice than juicing as you will also get the fibre, which is an essential nutrient present in our fruits and vegetables for several reasons and in regards to losing weight, the fibre will serve as intestinal brooms to push all unwanted debris out. Hey, we are seeking weight loss right?Now, the recipes listed below are my personal favorites for smoothies. I think they are creative ways to enjoy the proper diet and not entirely miss out on pleasuring ourselves occasionally. You can always experiment to find tasty recipes as well, but here are some to get you started.1. "Chocolate" Milk-10-15 medium dates -3 ripe bananas. -1 Young Coconut (I don't usually use the water inside of the nut although I heard it has some benefits, I have tested it on me to a not so good result but again we are all different) -16 oz cold Water Blend everything starting with the fruits then the coconut. 2. Papaya Passion-1 medium Papaya -1 red delicious apple -5 dates (pitted) Blend everything and prepare for something outta this world! 3. Strawberry Delight -4-8 strawberries -1-2 Bananas -8-10 dates 4. My Milk Shake tastes much better than yours...! -2 cups of Durian -8 dates -2 bananas -1 tsp of Carob powder Who said fruits and veggies were boring again? 5. Mango Magic -1-2 ripe mangos (peeled) -8 dates (pitted) -Juice of one orange 6. Durian Deck -24 oz of durian -1/2 orange -Blend both. Well, there you have it. Thought youd have to give up smoothies eh? Hope, Ill be able to save you some money in buying less healthy and-as youll discover-not as tasty smoothies with these. Heres to health and happiness.

Weight Loss After Pregnancy - What They Didnt Tell You!

Weight Loss After Pregnancy - What They Didnt Tell You!

Sarah is a pregnant mother of three who continues to breast-feed her 18-month-old. After each of her pregnancies, she has had difficulty losing weight. With all of her responsibilities, weight loss isnt a priority. Still, she wishes that, once this pregnancy is over, she will be able to return to her pre-marriage weight. The average woman gains more than 25 pounds during her pregnancy. The procedure of childbirth may result in a weight loss of up to 14 pounds, which means that new moms still have considerable weight to lose once they leave the hospital. However, some women simply assume that this baby fat will never go away. Yet, it is entirely possible to lose weight during the post-partum period. A number of medical experts recommend easing into a weight loss program after the birth of your baby. This means that you will not start dieting until about three months following birth. You should combine a low-fat diet with moderate exercise in order to achieve weight loss. Dont expect instant results. It will take you up to a good nine months to get back to your weight prior to pregnancy. A go-slow approach is best because you need to give your body time to recover after childbirth. Certainly, you might be able to lose weight faster, but you might be sacrificing valuable nutrients as a result. Interestingly enough, breastfeeding actually enhances weight loss. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists has found that breastfeeding leads to the release of hormones which enable your uterus to return to its normal size. However, breastfeeding alone wont bring down your weight. You need to combine it with a sensible diet and a moderate exercise program. Keep in mind that you need to have at least 1800 calories a day while breastfeeding in order to keep yourself and your baby healthy. Still, stay clear of junk food during this period. You should rely on food with high nutritional value to maintain the proper level of calories each day.There are many good reasons to exercise during the post-partum period. In addition to helping to accelerate weight reduction, exercise can help alleviate post-partum depression, improve your mood, and boost your confidence. Exercise can also clear your head so that youre better able to meet the demands of motherhood. You might consider joining a Mommy and Me exercise class so that your baby can exercise right along with you. Another helpful hint is to enlist the help of a friend or relative to act as your exercise buddy so that youll have some emotional support while exercising. An added bonus of exercise is that it should boost your energy level, which is quite important when battling the fatigue which comes from caring for a newborn.Your diet should generally be low-fat but not fat-free; vitamin rich; and high-fiber. Under no circumstances should you go on a fad diet. Such a diet could be quite harmful to your health and could actually slow your recovery from childbirth. Its a good idea to set weight-loss goals, but dont go overboard. Recognize that theres a limit to the amount of weight you can lose during a given period of time. You may see a number of actress-moms gracing the covers of magazines shortly after the birth of their children. They appear svelte and elegant, totally devoid of baby fat. In the accompanying article, they may even talk about exercising right after childbirth. Such articles send new mothers a dangerous message: that you must do all you can to become thin as quickly as possible after your baby is born. Such a philosophy is not only ridiculous, its also unhealthy. As a result, youll need to tune out such messages from the media and stay the course with your own gradual weight loss plan.The time right after the birth of a child can be quite challenging, taxing both your physical and emotional strength. While it is certainly a good idea to eat healthy, youll need to pace yourself as far as weight loss is concerned. Over time, you should be able to lose the weight you gained during your pregnancy. In fact, you might find that youre actually healthier after your baby is born.

How To Avoid Those Holiday Pounds!

If you believe the old stories about much weight people put on during the holidays, youre rightpartially. In a recent study conducted by The National Institute of Health, the researchers discovered that, in reality, most people tend to only put on just slightly under one pound. But a person who is already overweight will average a whopping five pounds extra after the last horns have been blown. But its not all good news for even those who put on the minimum because the study also shows that we all tend to keep the pounds put on. In other words, over ten years, those not-so-much pounds, could lead someone to being overweight. So, what can we do in order to keep those extra pounds off? After all, our homes are usually filled with holiday pies, cakes and other goodies, and they can be pretty temptingeven for the most faithful of dieters! Heres a few tips to get you through the holidays. Just A Nibble! Have you ever noticed that when you start eating a rich dessert it tastes so good, but by the last bite, youve had enough? One way to keep the pounds down is just to enjoy a few bites that delicious cheesecake or chocolate fudge brownie. No one says that you have to completely deprive yourself of holiday treatsjust limit how much you eat! Enjoy the Company, Not The Brownies! Many people think of holiday parties in terms of the foods that theyll get to eat (or have to avoid) instead of the real reason for the celebrationthe company and conversation. If you keep yourself busy chatting with friends, youll be less likely to invade the snack table. Go Full Youve likely heard the grocery store trick; dont go shopping when youre hungry because youll only end up buying more. Well, the same can work for holiday parties! Eat a lot of raw vegetables, and other healthy foods that will stick with you during the party and youll be less tempted to binge on the bad stuff. Drink Water If you were to add up the calories that youve probably consumed in sodas, fruit punches and alcoholic beverages at parties, you would likely be amazed. You can gulp down hundreds of calories without even realizing it if youre not careful! Instead of one of these high-calorie drinks, make it a habit to drink waterwhich in itself will help flush out extra water weight. Create An Eating Schedule It wouldnt be funor realisticto try and get through an entire party without at least sampling some of the treats. But instead of heading instantly to the food table and loading your plateand then suffering the rest of the party because you want moretry spacing out your snacks for the entire time of the party. Plan on taking a nibble of something about every thirty minutes. Not only will it help you eat less, it will be a fun game that you can play with yourself! Most importantly, remember that the holidays are meant for enjoyment. Dont be too hard on yourself, and if you make a mistake, talk an extra long walk to work off those extra calories instead of beating yourself up over it!

Spare Change and CaloriesThey All Add Up!

My young son, like most toddlers, has a piggy bank. Every evening he and his Daddy have fun putting spare change from Dads pockets into the pig. In fact, weve had to empty the pig contents several times in the past months. It sure does fill up quickly. Before the pig, the spare change was just left lying on the dresser, leaving us with a big mess, and no idea how much had accumulated. What do piggy banks and food choices have in common? I honestly would have had no idea before this past week when I decided to start keeping a food journal. Calories are a lot like the spare change from my husbands pockets, they add up fast. Unfortunately, before I started writing them all down, they were exactly like the mess on our dresser, only harder to clean up, or loose. Since having my son two-and-a-half years ago, I have attempted numerous times to loose the extra baby weight. Although becoming harder to do so everyday, I have to laugh at the baby weight excuse. Honey, the so called baby weight was lost when the bundle made his first shrill squeal at the hospital. What Im packing around is twenty pounds of pocket change with no pig to put it inAt the end of the first day of food journaling, I expected to discover a miraculous remedy for whats ailing meand guess what? I did. I discovered that I eat too much. Huh? Thats it? I eat too much? Actually, its not the quantity, most of the time anyway, but the choices that are the problem. But come on, I had no idea that one stinking piece of American cheese had seventy calories, and forty-five of them came from fat. Boy, nibbling on a few of those through out the day can shoot your entire plan to heck. The first day I just ate and wrote it all down. Other than trying to remember to jot down the food and calories for each bit I ate, I didnt change a thing. After needing to use a calculator to add it all up that night, the reality was heavier than all of the piggy bank change in the world. I really needed to make some healthier choices in what I was consuming each day. Food journaling has opened my eyes not only to how my choices were preventing weight loss, but how easy it is to just pop quick snacks into my mouth rather than planning my meals for the day. Ive also taken up another foreign conceptthe art of exercise. Just like emptying the pig when it gets too full, Im depositing extra calories everyday with some very much needed walking. At the end of your day, are you just dumping your spare change on the dresser, or do you keep count of how much youve accumulated? Come on. You can do it. Youll be surprised at how fast those nickelsahem, calories, can add up! Bank those calories in your own food journal today.

Summary

Need to lose weight? Dreading the thought of another diet program? You dont have to follow diets to lose weight. There are many people discovering this for themselves and they are the ones who are finding long term weight loss apposed to short term fixes. The key to weight loss is finding the right balance of what you eat, what you think, and what activity you do. It is not about following a perfect plan. It is impossible to be perfect every day! Finding the right balance he...