Are you looking to lose weight? If so, one thing that you must make sure you consider that some people quickly overlook is how to lose weight safely.
While it can be very tempting to jump on the latest ‘quick fix’ approach that promises to get you down to your goal weight in a few weeks flat, you have to always ask yourself whether these in fact are going to be safe approaches to use.
If you aren’t careful, you may just find that you are headed towards disaster as the diet you’re using is not providing you with nearly enough nutrients that your body needs to sustain good function and has you drained of all energy.
If your day-to-day living is nothing but miserable because of the diet choice you’ve made, how long are you really going to last?
Furthermore, are you really willing to sacrifice your future health just to lose a few pounds? That’s something that must be considered and factored into the mix.
Let’s take a quick look at a few of the top tips that you should remember with regards to how to lose weight safely.
1) Eat A Sufficient Level Of Calories
The very first thing that you must do if you’re going to learn how to lose weight safely is to make sure that you are eating a sufficient level of calories. Failing to consume enough calories could put your body at risk as you may start to burn up lean body tissue as a fuel source. In addition to that, the fewer calories you take in, the less the chances are that you will meet your nutritional needs for the vitamins and minerals essential for sustaining life, meaning the more risk you’ll be for suffering from disease.
For instance, very low calorie diets are often extremely low in calcium, which could set you up for bone thinning and osteoporosis down the road.
Plus, dropping your calorie intake too low will cause your metabolic rate to plummet, meaning that once you come off that diet, you’ll be at a very high risk of weight re-gain.
2) Never Eliminate Fruits And Vegetables
The second must-do to learn how to lose weight safely is to make sure that you are consuming fruits and vegetables daily.
Never go on a plan that has you restricting these foods. Fruits may be kept slightly lower due to the higher sugar content they contain, but you should never be reducing vegetables from your plan. Vegetables are one of the most nutrient dense foods you could consume so if you’re cutting them out, you can almost guarantee that you will be at a nutritional shortage.
Vegetables are a dieters dream come true because they are so low in calories yet high in dietary fiber, so this will help provide greater satiety on your diet without causing your intake to rise.
3) Integrate Diet Breaks Into The Picture
Moving along, another must-do as you learn to lose weight safely is to be sure that you integrate a few diet breaks into the picture as well.
After so long on any reduced calorie diet plan, many processes in your body (metabolic as well as hormonal) will be down-regulated. Your body accommodates to fewer calories coming in and thus slows down everything that’s taking place in effort to conserve fuel.
By adding a diet break every so often, you can offset this slow-down, not only making sure that you stay healthier, but that you can also continue to lose weight over the long haul.
If your body is slowing down its metabolic rate as time goes on with that diet plan you’re on, pretty soon you won’t even have the calorie deficit that you needed to start losing weight in the first place.
Instead, your energy expenditure will match your output and as a result, you’ll hit a plateau.
A diet break can quickly solve this problem entirely, getting you right back on track again.
A diet break should come at least ever 6-8 weeks and last 5-7 days.
4) Allow Cheat Meals Every So Often
In addition to having those diet breaks, including a cheat meal once a week or once every two weeks is also a smart idea if you want to lose weight safely. Cheat meals will not only provide a slight calorie boost, but they’ll also be excellent for improving your metabolic rate as well.
While they won’t ‘reset’ things like a full on diet break will, the temporary high calorie intake still does offer serious positive benefits.
You’ll find you feel more energized after a cheat meal and likely far more ready to stay the course on your diet plan.
5) Focus On Whole Foods, Not Supplements
The next tip for how to lose weight safely is to make sure that you are using whole foods and not supplements. If you’re someone who thinks that you can just go on a supplement and it will be a ‘fast fix’ to your weight loss woes, you had better think again.
Those who pump themselves full of supplements are only going to be in for disappointment and may see long term negative health impacts as well.
Many supplements, especially those that are stimulatory in nature as many fat loss products are, are going to have very negative effects on how you feel and function on a daily basis.
For instance, you may find that you have an increased heart rate, greater signs of anxiety, feelings of jitteriness or being shaky, or just generally nervous all the time.
Some supplements may also interfere with your ability to get a good night’s rest, and since proper sleep is so important for feeling well and staying healthy, this too will harm you in the long-run.
So there you have some quick tips to follow to lose weight while staying healthy. If you are sure to keep these in mind, you can reach your weight loss goals while feeling great as you do so.
[stextbox id=”grey” caption=”About the Author”]Shannon Clark holds a degree in Exercise Science from the University of Alberta, where she specialized in Sports Performance and Psychology. In addition to her degree, she is an AFLCA certified personal trainer and has been working in the field for over 8 years now.[/stextbox]