Now that it’s the new year, you’ve probably noticed all the advertisements about fat burners, pills and other products that promise to help you lose weight in a flash. Be wary of these claims. Rarely do they result in weight loss alone.
Medical science has long searched for that magic weight loss pill. But that’s a false dream.
If you want to lose weight in 2016, it takes a lifestyle change in what you eat and how you eat, and a commitment to regular exercise. That’s the key to losing weight and keeping it off long term.
Weight Loss Tips
1. Set a realistic goal weight. Visit with your provider to set a goal weight — that’s No. 1. Your provider can help you identify a weight that is achievable and that you will be comfortable maintaining.
2. Surround yourself with positive reinforcement. Find a friend or group to keep you accountable to your weight loss goals. For example, my wife, Kathy, exercises three to five days a week with a group of her friends. The accountability piece is important to help you be successful.
3. Take advantage of health and wellness benefits offered through your health plan. Many health plans sponsor wellness benefits, such as a health coach. As you are setting wellness goals, it’s also a great time to take an overall health risk assessment (HRA). This assessment will provide you with an overview of your potential risk for health concerns such as heart disease and stroke. Find a free online health risk assessment at Avera.org.
4. Increase your exercise gradually. When you’re starting a new weight loss program, the tendency is to overdo exercise. Gauge your exercise appropriately, and increase the amount of exercise gradually over a period of two to three weeks. The older you are, the more you may have to modify the intensity of your exercise plan.
5. Look for a weight loss program that works for you. There are many different weight loss programs. It’s less important to focus on finding the “perfect” program. Instead, find one that encourages healthy eating. Combine the diet program with exercise and activity.
6. Have reasonable expectations for weight loss. A weight loss of two pounds per week is a realistic goal. Don’t get too discouraged if you’re not seeing results right away.