How to Lose Weight and Maintain it
That feeling of guilt, underachievement, depression, and sadness when you look at the numbers on the scale and discover that you’ve just added some extra pounds or not lost any is not one that anyone wants to have. Do you consider yourself overweight and in need of long-lasting weight loss results, or do you want to keep weight off? Read on!
A bad lifestyle equals bad health, and for this reason, you must make a conscious effort to improve how you live, ranging from enforcing self-discipline to living a less sedentary lifestyle to controlling stress levels.
Cortisol (a stress hormone) gets released once you are stressed, alongside the epinephrine and non-epinephrine hormones, which are responsible for “fight or flight” responses to threats. While the other hormone levels become normal after a while, cortisol levels can remain elevated. This hormone stimulates carbohydrate and fat metabolism for energy and also maintains blood sugar levels. These actions result in an increased appetite, thereby causing you to gain more weight or find it difficult to lose those extra pounds. So you need to manage your stress levels better.
A study has shown that reducing your diet and increasing physical activity helps in losing about ten percent of the initial body weight in six months. Besides losing weight, exercise helps build stronger bones, improve your mood, and reduce the risk of chronic diseases. While we won’t recommend a particular exercise, as everyone is different, the following exercises have proven effective for weight loss: cycling, jogging, yoga, and swimming. Although these exercises may be tedious, a simple 30-minute walk daily works very well. Whether you want to lose weight or maintain weight, you need to work out.
Most lifestyle decisions, good or bad, are birthed by how disciplined we are. You can decide to sit all day and watch Netflix or get up and be productive. It is important that you limit how many hours you spend watching the TV, as sitting hours play a major role in weight gain. Moving from time to time can make a major difference in your lifestyle. Also, it is advised that you eat 90 percent of calories exactly before 8 pm.
Make sure you get enough sleep at all times because studies show that inadequate sleep can result in weight gain. Most people require eight hours of sleep every night, but it varies from person to person.
Diet plays a major role in weight loss.
Although researchers have yet to conclude the role water consumption plays in weight loss, a 2014 study proved helpful. 50 overweight women drank 500 ml of water about 30 minutes before each meal (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) along with their usual water intake for 8 weeks consistently. They all reduced their body fat, mass, and weight, and also reported suppressed appetite. Lipolysis refers to the process where fat gets metabolized, and this is achieved by taking enough water. Hydrolysis occurs before lipolysis, and it involves water molecules mixing with triglycerides to form fatty acids and glycerol. So when you drink enough water, you burn off fat from drinks, food, and also stored fat.
P.F.F. stands for protein, fat, and fiber. Incorporating all three in your meal will not just satisfy you, but also encourage healthy eating. They are slow-digesting macro nutrients that extend satisfaction, thereby helping you curb overeating.
Carbs & Calories
Carbs and calories have been overemphasized in the weight loss journey. When you consume carbs, it is converted to glucose by insulin. Insulin, however, burns glucose but to the detriment of fat release, which makes you crave more carbs and gain extra weight. Weight gain has been attributed to calories as well.
According to researchers, obesity stems from environmental changes that lure us into unhealthy practices and suppress our psychological defenses against eating excessively and yielding to fattening fare. It is evident that our nutritional environment has changed drastically in the past 50 years, and it’s now termed toxic. This qualification captures the new dietary atmosphere that is characterized by dominant access to food which is heavily marketed, energy-dense, widely accessible, and very cheap. Little environment changes can make the difference. These include the following:
Snacking consistently is unhealthy, and if you decide to, ask yourself if it has protein, fiber, and fat (P.F.F). However, with home-made meals, you control what goes into the food, as well as the quantity you eat. This way, you will eat a lesser quantity of food, eat healthier, and gain less weight.
Surround Yourself with Like Minds
Imagine having friends who are comfortable being overweight and obese, and they snack always. Even if you try to keep fit, you will be tempted to give in. Always surround yourself with people who can influence you positively, like fitness experts, because emotions are infectious.
Your thoughts and moods influence your eating habits as well.
Never Waste Food Mentality
Many suffer from psychological blocks when dealing with food wastage. Stop overeating in the name of “not wasting food.” You need to eat when you are hungry and stop just before you get full. This is very helpful.
Do feelings of frustration, sadness, or anger make you overeat? If so, you need to put a halt to emotional eating, identify your triggers, and fight cravings. For emotional hunger, a full stomach isn’t satisfactory, the hunger is instant, and food cravings are specific.
Not seeing positive results is frustrating, but keep at it. With patience, persistence, and perseverance, you’ll get there. Studies have shown that dieters who have motivators tend to stay on course. If you don’t have anyone around, watch shows on weight loss. These shows feature successful dieters who have lost weight and kept it off.
Why Do People Regain Weight?
Let’s discuss why people regain weight. Dieters can lose weight in a short while, but they often regain weight eventually. It often boils down to several factors like feelings of deprivation and unrealistic expectations. According to a study, it was discovered that calorie deprivation plays an essential role in weight regain. This is because, when there is calorie deprivation, leptin levels (satiety hormone) drop and ghrelin levels (hunger hormone) rise. Thus, deprived dieters experience additional hunger, and even after eating, they develop increased feeling of hunger.
We all have our individual differences, and weight loss doesn’t have a universal application. Trying out the aforementioned can be helpful in your journey, but ensure to note what works best for you. Health is wealth.
Doucet, E., St-Pierre, S., Almeras, N., & Tremblay, A. (2003). Relation between appetite ratings before and after a standard meal and estimates of daily energy intake in obese and reduced obese individuals. APPETITE, 40(2), 137-143.
Greenway, F. L. (2015). Psychological adaptations to weight loss and factors favouring weight regain. International Journal of Obesity, 39(8), 1188-1196
Jakicic, J. M., Marcus, B. H., Lang, W., & Janney, C. (2008). Effect of exercise on 24-month weight loss maintenance in overweight women. Archives of Internal Medicine, 168(14), 1550.