Obesity is on the rise, especially in the United States. For this reason, the public is constantly bombarded with new fad diets and lose-weight-quick schemes. We get a ton of email on this subject at AskDeb.com, with the most common question being, “What are the most effective weight loss solutions?”
In the following article, we’ll examine which weight loss solutions are the most effective. We’ll also provide tips for healthier eating and dispel a number of wrongheaded notions about dieting and losing weight.
The Harsh Reality
When someone asks, “What are the most effective weight loss solutions,” I know they’re usually wanting me to recommend the hottest new diet. From the South Beach Diet to the Atkins Diet, everyone seems to know somebody who’s lost weight on a fad diet.
Unfortunately, the harsh reality is that most diets don’t work. Even if you do lose weight in the short term, the odds are very high that you will eventually gain it back. Some of these diets can even be harmful if taken too far.
The Key To Losing Weight
The key to losing weight and keeping it off is through sensible diet and exercise. There’s just no way around it. Of course, most people are essentially lazy (including myself), so they would much rather take a magic pill than diet or exercise for the rest of their life.
According to many nutrition experts, a person should eat at least every 4 to 5 hours. This will prevent binge eating, and you’ll feel full and have plenty of energy throughout the day. At the very minimum, make sure you eat three meals a day.
Exercise is also a key component to burning calories. As your body takes in calories, you need to do something to get rid of them. Sitting on the sofa just isn’t going to do the trick.
Weight Loss Groups
The cheapest options when it comes to weight loss groups are Weight Watchers and T.O.P.S. Stressing a sensible diet, these groups also provide a sense of community between other members. This can prove helpful, as may people need someone else to push them forward. Just don’t expect a magic weight loss solution.
Weight Loss Surgery
If you really want to lose weight and keep it off, you might consider weight loss surgery. From gastric bypass to lap band, this option either decreases the size of the stomach or limits the amount of nutrients taken in from food.
On the downside, the surgery is expensive, and many patients suffer complications. This can range from infections to leakage at the site of the incision.
Weight loss surgery should only be considered as a last resort, however. In most cases, it cannot be reversed so you should speak to your doctor before surgery.
Weight Loss Tips
My answer to “What are the most effective weight loss solutions” may have disappointed some readers. While I won’t recommend some new fad diet for you to waste your money on, I will suggest a few sensible weight loss tips that can work for anyone.
- Avoid snacking in front of the television. This is exactly why so many Americans are overweight.
- Eat slowly and enjoy your food. If you eat too fast, your brain won’t have time to tell your body that it’s full.
- Stop eating when you’re full. There’s no rule that says you have to eat everything on your plate (especially if you’re an adult).
- Never shop when you’re hungry. You’ll end up buying more than you need. Make a shopping list and stick to it.
- You should drink six to eight glasses of water per day. Drinking a glass before eating will also help you to feel full (meaning you’ll eat less food).
- Don’t leave snacks in plain view. This will provide more temptation than you can stand.
- Avoid alcohol. It has no nutrients, but is has tons of calories.
- Cooking with a non-stick pan will keep you from having to use fat when you cook.
- Stop eating if you finish your plate. There’s absolutely no reason to go back for seconds.
- Before going to a restaurant, have a healthy, light snack. This will keep you from pigging out at the restaurant.