It may come as a surprise to many that the hardest part to losing weight is to maintain the weight loss…
Losing the weight is the easy bit; keeping the weight off is the tricky part. Set yourself up for long term success both mentally and physically and feel healthy and look good all year-round. Here are five simple tips for effective weight-loss and long-term maintenance that will help you win the battle of the bulge for good.
1. Combine exercise and weight loss
This may seem obvious but a study published recently in the American Journal of Physiology — Regulatory, Integrative and Comparative Physiology in 2009 found that exercising as well as portion control may help people maintain their weight. The study found that by reducing appetite, preventing fat cells from accumulating and by prompting the body to burn calories from fat before burning calories from carbohydrates, reduce feelings of hunger.
2. Get interactive help
A research study conducted by the Center for Health Research and published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research found that people who used an interactive weight loss program on the internet such as The Biggest Loser Club designed to promote maintenance of weight loss were more successful at maintaining long-term weight loss than those who didn’t. The results suggest that an Internet-based tool can provide some of the accountability assumed necessary for successful long-term weight maintenance.
3. Don’t skip breakfast
Starting the day with a good breakfast was shown to be a factor in maintaining weight loss by the US National Weight Control Registry (NWCR) in an ongoing study. People who have lost at least 13 kilos and kept it off for one year or more, reported eating breakfast on a regular basis as one of their key strategies for maintaining weight loss. This shows more than ever that breakfast is one of the most important meals of the day and helps to reduce hunger as well as provide key nutrients that may enhance physical activity.
4. Portion control
Nutrition experts say that portion control is a major key to long term weight loss. Once you have downsized your portion size and lost weight, the important thing to remember is that you can never go back to the large quantities of food that you consumed previously as your body needs less energy and fuel than it did previously. A good guide is that a third of your plate should be vegetables, another third should be protein such fish or chicken and the remaining quarter set aside for a starchy food such as potato and rice.
5. Don’t become complacent
Successful weight loss lies in a shift in your mentality. Studies show that when participants received counseling in addition to nutrition therapy and exercise therapy, they are more likely to keep the weight off. To be able to successfully maintain weight loss is about a lifestyle change, it’s not a temporary shift in lifestyle patterns. Stay accountable to your scales – it is important to monitor your weight just as you did when you began your weight loss program.
Weight loss is difficult to achieve and maintaining the weight loss is an even greater challenge. Don’t fret if you fall off the good-eating wagon now and again. Just dust yourself off and hop back on it again. It’s important to reward yourself now and again and studies show that this is an important part of maintaining weight loss. The more you practice good eating habits and get into a regular routine, the easier it will be keep to maintain weight loss successfully.