I would like to talk a little about weight management, which can apply to all of us. To become one’s most healthy self that might include weight loss, maintaining weight, or gaining weight. This blog is not going to be talking about what diet is the best, because quite honestly I do not believe in diets!!! Shocker, I know, but other nutritionists and medical professionals will agree. Diets are concerned more about weight loss than healthy lifestyle. They teach you to NOT trust your body, but that you have to CONTROL your body. There are unnecessary strict food rules that teaches you to hate certain foods. The real emphasis should be on healthy, active living and NOT on weight.
Lets talk about losing body fat. In order to lose body fat, it will occur over time. It cannot consist of rapid weight loss.It is healthy to lose 1-2 lbs. per week. In order to achieve that goal, it is suggested to reduce caloric intake and increase physical activity. The combination of both should equal a 500 calorie deficit per day. It sounds easy enough, right? It is actually more complicated then it appears, but possible!
We will focus on the areas of emphasis
- Healthy eating
- Physical activity
- Behavior change
It is important to realize the difference between hunger vs appetite. You must learn to listen and trust to your body. It will tell you when you are hungry and it will tell you when it is full.
Calorie intake will vary depending on the person but the average caloric need per day for Females is 1800 to 2400 calories per day. Males 2200 to 3000 calories per day. Depending on your physical activities this intake can be adjusted as appropriate. Females should never go under 1200 calories and Males 1500. You MUST eat to maintain your metabolism and to be healthy. When you are not eating the correct amount of calories for your body you are actually first going to gain weight. Your body is going to store more fat because it is in a starvation mode. Then your body is going to start using lean muscle tissues as a form of energy, so by depriving your body of the much needed calories you will be harming it and will become weak and low of energy.
So start with tracking what you eat, and at first you can count the calories. Be careful to not become obsessed with your calorie count. If you are eating more calories than suggested then slowly cut the calories down. This way you can insure that your body will adjust properly. Also by keeping a food log you will see what foods you are consuming that might not be the best for your body, and you can make a change. If you notice that your caloric intake is lower than what your body needs then increase your caloric intake slowly as well. Fill your body with wholesome foods that will give you the energy and strength that you need.
Know that achieving your personal healthy weight takes time!
A healthy weight does not come by exercising alone nor by healthy food consumption. Another important part is being mentally healthy as well. You will need to trust your body and learn to love to be healthy. Healthy weight is a combination of all three, exercise, healthy eating and behavior.
The best kind of exercise is the kind that you enjoy! If you love to dance, then dance! If you love to bike, then bike! If you love to run, then run! But aim for at least 150 minutes of physical activity a week. It promotes a healthy weight, boots self-esteem, and is important for health. Keep in mind to include strength training or weight resistance to your cardio workouts for the best results.
Make sure you ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS eat breakfast. Your body will be waking up from 6-8 hours of fasting and it will need to be fueled. Ideally breakfast should be the largest meal, then lunch, and last dinner. By eating breakfast you will be able to maintain healthy weight and feel energized for the day. It is also good to snack about 2-3 times a day to continue to provide your body with energy and to help you not overeat when your main meals come.
Make an effort to cook your own meals. Not only will it save money, but you will be able to make sure that your meals are filled with nutrients that your body needs. Prep your snacks and meals if you are busy, plus if the prep work is already done then you will be more likely to eat the healthy snack. Make sure to include veggies and fruits every day!