Healthy weight management 101
If you're looking to lose weight, you should know that true weight management is a balancing act: it's about keeping calories down, eating the right foods and staying active. Fad diets come and go, and many people find themselves disappointed with their inability to keep weight off through these diets. That's why it's vital to develop eating and exercise habits that are sustainable for the long term.
And don't forget-maintaining a healthy weight isn't just about looking and feeling good. It can also be extremely important for overall health. Studies have shown that the more body fat you have (and the more overweight you are), the more at risk you are for serious illnesses such as heart disease, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, breathing problems and certain cancers.
Diet and lifestyle choices
Combine exercise with healthy eating habits and you'll be well on your way to a healthier weight. And don't forget about good sleep-it can be vital to your weight-management efforts.
It may seem like a no-brainer, but weight loss comes down to burning more calories than you consume. Here are some other simple diet adjustments recommended by Cat Pantaleo, nutritionist at our downtown Boulder store.
- Reduce your intake of carbohydrates, especially refined carbs like white flour and sugar. Limit even complex carbs to two servings per day (e.g. a slice of wheat bread and a serving of rice).
- Increase portions of lean protein (fish, eggs, chicken) as well as healthy fats (coconut oil, avocados, olive oil, small portions of nuts and seeds). A higher ratio of protein and fat to carbohydrates can lead to more efficient fat burning.
Each person's unique physiology will dictate their exercise needs, but here is a good rule of thumb:
- Aim for 5 days per week of cardio, raising your heart rate for a significant portion of that time. Work out for at least 50 minutes during two sessions, and 20-30 minutes for the other three.
- Make sure two sessions include some form of weight-bearing exercise, which is critical to fat burning.
- Consider joining a support or exercise group that can help maximize your efforts.
- Stay motivated by engaging in a variety of activities, such as hiking, cross-country skiing or swimming. The more fun you have, the better your chances of sticking with it!
Natural weight-management solutions
When combined with the right lifestyle adjustments, including plenty of exercise and a healthier diet, there are a variety of over-the-counter supplements that can serve as an effective adjunct therapy to a weight-management program. Dietary supplements can aid in fat burning, metabolic enhancement and promoting satiety.
There are no magic pills when it comes to weight loss, and when you're shedding pounds healthfully, you should only expect to lose 1-2 pounds per month. A practitioner can talk with you about which supplements might be an appropriate addition to your weight-management plan.
Read more about our practitioners' weight-management advice, from starting with a good cleansing program to supporting your adrenals and boosting your thyroid health:
5 ways to kick-start your weight loss goals
Natural ways to lose weight
Weight loss wisdom
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