- What is weight loss?
Weight loss is the total or partial reduction of the total body mass. Weight loss can occur unintentionally due to an underlying disease, a symptom of the body’s adjustment to chronic starvation, an intentional weight-loss program or diet.
2. How do I lose weight
To lose weight it is important to reduce the intake of food and drink with high levels of fat and sugar and increase your physical activity. This will help lower your calorie intake. It is also important to eat healthily by getting a variety of different foods including fruit and vegetables which are rich in nutrients that are good for you. On days when you are feeling particularly hungry, it’s advisable to indulge in a healthy snack instead of eating something unhealthy to stave off hunger.
3. What is healthy eating?
Healthy eating means choosing the right kind and amount of food to keep you healthy, protect you from disease and help you feel your best. Choosing a variety of foods that are low in saturated fat, sugar and salt; have plenty of fibre, vitamins, minerals and other nutrients is an important step towards a healthy diet.
Choosing foods that are high in fibre, such as whole grains, helps with digestion and can help you feel full for longer – which may mean you eat less at your next meal. Fibre also comes from vegetables, fruits and wholegrains (such as oats and barley). These contain vitamins, minerals and other nutrients that are essential for good health.
A healthy, balanced diet low in saturated fat, sugar and salt will help reduce your risk of heart disease, stroke, obesity and some cancers. A varied and balanced diet may also benefit your mental health as well as your physical health. You should be able to get all the vitamins and minerals you need from your diet. If you eat a well-balanced and varied diet with plenty of fruit, vegetables and starchy foods (such as bread, rice or potatoes) every day it is very unlikely that you will develop a nutrient deficiency.
4. How much should I be exercising?
To lose weight it is important to increase physical activity each day .You should aim to do at least 150 minutes (2 hours 30 minutes) of moderate intensity exercise a week in bouts of 10 minutes or more. This could include cycling, brisk walking and swimming, plus some times play active games such as football, netball or tennis. You can break this up into shorter sessions if this fits better into your lifestyle – for example, play some games in the afternoon with your children or at lunchtime. On average, men should do about 30 minutes a day and women about 20 minutes.
5. What is physical activity?
Physical activity involves purposeful physical movement that increases energy expenditure beyond basal levels. Movements may be large or small, involve major muscle groups or a small number of muscles, be rapid or slow, and be either repetitive or continuous. Physical activity also encompasses recreational pursuits such as home chores and gardening. There are four broad categories of physical activity: planned exercise; transport related activity (getting to school/work); domestic tasks; leisure time activities (sports/recreation). Plan for at least 150 minutes per week (2 hours 30 min) of moderate intensity activity.
6. How can I do this?
By doing a combination of activities you will get the most benefits from your exercise: brisk walking, swimming, cycling and playing active games are all good examples of moderate intensity physical activity. Combining physical activity with other activities such as going to the shops or taking part in your favourite sport can also help to increase the amount you do each week; getting up from your chair every 20 minutes and pacing about whilst on the phone is another way to boost your total output by adding movement to what would otherwise be a sedentary time. The message remains simple: if you want to lose weight the best approach is increasing daily physical activity and eating healthily . And it’s never too late to start.
7. Should I take vitamin and mineral supplements?
You should not take any supplement that consists wholly or partly of vitamins or minerals without having a specific need to do so (eg if you are pregnant). People who smoke, drink more than the recommended 15 units of alcohol a week for men and women, who have an eating disorder, have renal disease, inflammatory bowel disease or no teeth will generally benefit from taking folic acid as well as vitamin D and possibly iron – but advice on this can be given only by your doctor. Do not take any other vitamins/minerals that are available without a prescription without having specific instructions from your doctor. Taking too much of certain nutrients can cause adverse effects including nausea , vomiting and diarrhoea . If you are taking vitamin A supplements, do not take more than 3mg/day.
8. How much should I drink?
Most adults require around 2.5 litres (10 cups) of fluid a day for normal bodily functions including temperature control, digestion , absorbing nutrients and excreting waste products from the body . Drinking too little can cause dehydration which may result in headaches , tiredness and difficulty concentrating so it is important to replace fluid losses through drinking beverages containing water or unsweetened teas/coffees . Alcoholic drinks contain no extra calories and may sti mulate thirst but this activity is also regarded as low intensity physical activity. However, alcohol may have negative effects on health when consumed in large amounts so it is important to limit your overall alcohol consumption. Including physical activity, the average adult needs to drink around three litres (12 cups) of fluid a day for good health and wellbeing.
9. Should I do any strength training?
Strength building exercises such as lifting weights, rowing or working with resistance bands will stimulate you to use more calories whilst you are doing them but they won’t increase the number of calories you burn afterwards unless you take part in aerobic exercise which uses oxygen and raises your heart rate . Exercises which use free weights can be very beneficial because they involve many different muscle groups as well as joints each time . The best way to get started with all forms of exercise is to discuss your aims with a certified personal trainer who can help you to devise an appropriate exercise regime.
10. What is the difference between aerobic and anaerobic exercise?
Aerobic exercise refers to continuous, rhythmic or repetitive exercises which make you breathe harder and use oxygen. Anaerobic exercise occurs in high intensity bursts of activity when using up all the available oxygen but not resulting in enough energy for general bodily functions . The activities listed in point 6 are good examples of moderate intensity physical activity that perform both roles: improving cardiovascular fitness whilst also increasing muscle strength . To get fitter faster it is best to combine these with some weight training, sprinting and/or stretching as well as swimming, cycling and playing active games.
11. How can I get fitter?
The only way of achieving significant improvements in your fitness is to work at high intensity for a period of time on a regular basis . However, it’s important not to overdo this: everyone has their own limit – which will vary according to how fit you already are and you should stop before you feel exhausted or push yourself too hard. A good rule is that if your heart rate rises after 10 minutes of exercise then slow down to recover until it slows back down again. This will improve gradually as the body adapts to working harder but most people need around three sessions a week at first including strength training, stretching and aerobic exercises such as walking , jogging, swimming, cycling and dancing.
12. Is fitness more important than weight loss?
Yes: being fit gives you a better quality of life in terms of health, energy and stamina as well as enabling you to do more things with less effort and feel good about yourself . Improving your fitness is the best way to lose excess fat, tone your muscles, reduce stress levels, sleep better at night and improve circulation so that toxins are removed from the body . Being fit enables active people to take part in all kinds of physical activities including sports , walking holidays or running errands around town – they don’t have to worry about getting out of breath or fitting exercise into their daily schedule . Fit people also tend to be happier and enjoy better job prospects because employers value their energy, enthusiasm and commitment.
13. How do I make small changes to my lifestyle?
You need to set yourself realistic goals in order to keep your motivation levels high as well as avoiding the temptation of giving up altogether . The best way is to start with manageable objectives which you are certain that you can sustain for some time so that they become habits or even part of your personality . For example, if you enjoy eating out at restaurants then try reducing the portions slightly or replacing high calorie sauces with lemon juice: you should end up saving calories without having any negative effects on taste. It’s also important not to quit smoking cigarettes during a diet because it will increase your appetite but gradual reductions can be successful long term by using nicotine patches and trying to eat a more healthy diet . Quit cold turkey only if you have support from a friend or family member.
14. What are the best foods for losing weight?
It’s important to choose a balanced diet that includes plenty of fruit, vegetables, whole grains , fish , lean cuts of meat and lots of water every day . The main benefits are: it tastes better so you’re more likely to stick with it long term; doesn’t affect your mood because it’s high in complex carbohydrates which stabilize blood sugar levels ; it reduces cholesterol levels by increasing good HDL cholesterol whilst lowering bad LDL cholesterol; it helps to control your appetite: increasing fibre makes you feel fuller for longer, making you less likely to reach for snacks between meals; it’s high in protein which is essential for maintaining muscles as well as burning fat and helps to prevent hunger pangs later on.
15. Are there any foods that make you burn more calories?
Yes: a study in America showed that those who drank large quantities of water increased their metabolic rate by 30% over a two day period , but caffeine also speeds up the metabolism because it increases blood flow around the body . The best way to keep motivated though is to measure your progress regularly so that you can see how effective all these small changes are – a simple tape measure or weighing scales will help keep track of inches lost from your waist or pounds shed, even if they’re only an inch here and there at first – each one counts!
16. What are the benefits of strength training exercises?
Lifting weights helps to increase lean muscle mass and metabolism , which increases fat burning so that you can get a better shape with less body fat . It also strengthens bones, improves posture, keeps muscles strong for longer as you age and helps to prevent injuries plus it’s fun! You’ll feel more confident about yourself when lifting heavy weights in front of other people because they won’t be able to see any lumps or bumps: keep at it you might even start feeling like a weight lifter!
Weight loss is a difficult process because it requires modifying your lifestyle to maintain long-term weight management. Losing weight can be challenging, but there are many benefits that come with being more active and eating healthier foods. In order to make these changes easier for you, try setting achievable goals so that you stay motivated and avoid the temptation of giving up altogether. Remember: each small change counts!