How to lose weight and maintain it

Lose weight it’s hard. Preventing it, according to the data, appears nearly impossible. Unfortunately, studies Show that most of us will be back to weight within two years, and by five YearsAlmost all of that could come back. On top of that, many people gain more weight than they lose. Although these statistics are discouraging, the focus is on the ultimate goal – better health and longevity – It may increase your chances. The path to a successful weight maintenance plan begins before you reach your goal number. Here are ways to approach a healthy weight in the long term.

Focus on your metabolic health numbers, not the number on the scale

When patients come to see me for the first time, they often discuss their goals. Most of the time, these goals include a number. “I want to lose that many pounds,” or “I want to hit that number on the scale.” Instead of the number on the scale, studies Show that focusing on numbers that talk about health can be more effective in changing sustainable behavior. Get rid of the scale And focus on your lipid panel, blood sugar numbers, or maybe even signs of inflammation. Paying more attention to health, rather than weight, changes why you want to lose pounds in the first place. Other quality of life standards, such as better sleepLess chronic pain or increased energy can all be triggers for sustainability as well. Finally, if you must rely on a scale, choose Options that assess body fat and muscle mass.

Learn from the weight maintenance warriors

Multiple studies have been done to assess why one person succeeds in losing weight, while another does not. two studies in magazine obesity It surveyed 5,000-6,000 individuals who participated in a structured weight loss program. Survey participants lost an average of 50 pounds and maintained their weight for three years or more.

Successful weight losers from these studies, as well as previous data, were often more likely to:

  • I make healthy food choices most of the time and find these choices easy and ‘unconscious’.
  • Self-monitoring and recording their food intake.
  • Consume relatively low calories, but foods rich in nutrients.
  • Engage in a higher level of physical activity.
  • continue Setting goals priority.
  • Celebrate their past accomplishments and embrace their current health.

Another vital aspect is mentality – especially in the face of challenges and adversity. While both health and appearance were important motivating factors, greater confidence and being fitter and mentally topped the list for the ability to maintain healthy habits.

move more

When it comes to losing weight, It was found that diet plays a more important role In terms of lost pounds. Playing sports, as it turns outNot the secret weapon to successful weight loss. However, when it comes to keeping those pounds from coming back, you need more movement. A recent study from the University of Colorado found that when people engage in physical activity, they maintaindaily raw steps (about 12,000) and maintained a higher expenditure on energy. else study Published in the archives of internal medicine It found that in order to maintain the weight loss, the women needed to exercise for at least 55 minutes, five days a week. This recommendation goes beyond CURRENT GUIDELINES For exercise, which requires only 150 minutes of moderate physical activity throughout the week and two days muscle building training.

Adding protein to every meal — such as enjoying an omelet for breakfast — has been shown to help maintain weight loss.
Adding protein to every meal — such as enjoying an omelet for breakfast — has been shown to help maintain weight loss.Sergio Ametti/Getty Images

Fall in love with protein

a Study 2020 In a nutrition magazine I found it High protein diets They were associated with a greater ability to maintain weight loss. The study showed that having more protein often negates adaptive thermogenesis (a state in which the body adapts to a new weight by altering energy expenditure). An easy way to do it is Add protein to every meal And a snack. For example, have egg whites for breakfast, hummus as a snack, and wild salmon for dinner.

Rate your social circle

Have you ever been told by a friend that “one bite of something won’t kill you?” A study from the University of North Carolina found that People who lose weight They may experience “mild stigma” where friends and family, consciously or unconsciously, sabotage or undermine successful weight-loss efforts. The researchers found that effective communication techniques were one way to mitigate comments and discourage situations from friends and family. For example, telling loved ones early on about your motivations for losing weight or communicating with weight loss efforts as a way to have better health, not a better appearance, have often been successful ways to avoid stigma reactions.

Embrace and adapt to your body’s survival mechanism

Studies show that repeated attempts to lose weight and then gain it back (often referred to as the yo-yo diet) can have a negative impact on health and lead to an increased risk of weight gain. 2016 study He showed that frequent dieting could make the brain think it was going through periods of starvation. In response, the body continues to work on storing fat to prepare for the next round. The body adapts and becomes functional to the current low weight, and if you do not adapt to it, you are more likely to gain weight again.

Imagine you are wearing a 20lb jacket and I walk around the block. Walking will be difficult, and you may have to work harder during the activity. Effort is higher and with it the calories you burn. Now imagine taking off the jacket. The body doesn’t have to work that hard anymore to get you around the block. If you lose 50 pounds and change nothing in your physical activity or eating habits, you are more likely to gain that weight back. Your metabolism is working with the new weight, so constant adaptation is essential.

Take a break from dieting

If your idea of ​​losing and maintaining weight is a “diet,” studies show you’re most likely doomed. A 2017 Randomized controlled trial It found that individuals who took breaks from dieting were more likely to lose and maintain weight. The cornerstone of dieting is often restriction. The more restrictions, the less we lose. So take a break from diets and embrace lifestyle changes instead.

Weight loss, especially when it is The reduction occurs in the middle sectionIt can have a significant impact on health and longevity. When you focus on longevity, happiness and energy boostThe reasons for losing weight in the first place will be obvious and your ability to maintain better health will be easier.