When trying to lose weight, it is best to plan to lose around one to two pounds per week. Anything more than that can be unhealthy and may not be permanently lost. If you are trying to lose more than 20 pounds, it is a good idea to talk to your doctor before starting any new eating habits or lifestyle changes. You should also consult your doctor of you have any medical conditions, take medications on a regular basis or plan to try a very low-calorie diet. It is also important to pair your new eating plan with an exercise plan tailored to your ability level. If you are severely out of shape this may mean simply walking around the block. If you are already in decent shape and just trying to lose a few pounds, running is an excellent way to get in shape and lose weight. If you have issues with your joints or other physical ailments that would otherwise stop you from exercising, look into a swim aerobics class. Swimming is easy on the body, while still providing an effective exercise as well. The bottom line is that you will do better on any diet when you pair it with an exercise program that you are willing to stick to for the long term.

Beware of the Yo-Yo Effect

The yo-yo effect, sometimes also called weight cycling, is when you lose weight and then gain it right back again … lose it, gain it, lose it, gain it. You get the picture. It is no fun to feel like all your work to lose that weight was for nothing as you see those pounds showing up on the scale again. This can seriously affect your confidence and undermine your commitment to losing the weight for good. While it can be disappointing to see those pounds come back, there are ways to get them off again and keep them off for good this time. First off, go into any diet with a complete commitment. Give it a 100 percent commitment and you will do great! Next, stick to this commitment for good. A diet should be a lifestyle change, not something you do for a few months and then quit. Do not be afraid of the scale. Weight yourself regularly so that if you see a slight increase in weight you can make a change to stop it before it gets out of control. If you do notice added weight, make a note of when and why it may have started. Keeping track of what typically triggers your weight gain can help you avoid the yo-yo effect in the future. Maybe it was the start of a new job or a move to a new town or even the kids getting out of school for the summer that started your latest weight gain. Readjust your plan or recommit to your diet and start again. You will get back on track!

Find the Right Diet for You

There are a few questions to ask yourself before starting any new diet. The goal is to find a plan that you think you can stick with for the long term. Find a diet that will change your lifestyle enough that you see results, but is still within the range of what is possible for you. If you make it too hard on yourself you will not stick with it. It is a good idea to cut way back on sugars, but if you have a notorious sweet tooth and decide to never allow yourself to eat anything with sugar in it, you will eventually crack. Be sure to choose a diet that you can stick to. Do your research to find out what foods you can eat and which ones are off limits. If there are calorie limits or guidelines, be sure they will be sufficient for your age, weight and lifestyle. This may be a good question for your doctor, as well.

If choosing an organized diet plan, find out if there are qualified staff members on hand -dietitians and doctors – to offer support and answer your questions. Then go ahead and ask them how many people actually manage to complete the program and how much weight do they lose on average. Choose a plan with a maintenance program for keeping the weight off – this is important! If you have to buy food or supplements with the plan, find out what this will cost and factor that into your decision. Speaking of supplements, it is always important to know of any potential side effects ahead of time and talk to your doctor about any possible interactions with medications you are already taking.

Some popular diet plans include going low-carb, high-protein or both at the same time. The Mediterranean diet has been known to be successful, with its fresh foods, low carbohydrates and good fats. Some people swear by eating nothing but cabbage and others say that you can eat pretty much just meat to lose weight. Whatever plan you choose, just remember that a healthy balance is always best. Eating balanced meals full of fresh, local, healthy foods is the best way to go. How much you eat and in what percentages is up to you and the diet you choose. Just be sure that you are picking a plan that will allow you to lose weight at a slow, consistent pace and will keep you healthy and energized. If you are ever feeling sluggish and weak on a diet, it is probably not a good idea to continue that diet plan. Stop the plan and see your doctor right away.

Better Results Thanks to Food Supplements

Sometimes when we start a new diet, we find that we are missing out on certain essential vitamins and nutrients. Since going on a diet is intended to make us more healthy, it is important not to deprive your body of the important nutrients it needs. Sometimes a restrictive diet, such as a low-carb diet can take a while to get used to as well. Some nutritional supplements can help your body adjust to the changes caused by a new diet

A Few Motivational Words

Whatever diet you choose, remember that the most important thing to take into consideration is whether or not the diet is a healthy, long-term choice. Can you stick with it for the long haul? Make a healthy lifestyle change that you are able to stick with and you will most certainly see success. You can do it!