A successful weight management program requires a long-term approach, one designed to modify the behaviors that can influence our ability to lose or gain weight.
The most important factors in eating for weight loss include maintaining energy and nutrient balance. Severe caloric restrictions will slow down the metabolism, making weight loss harder to achieve. For women this means a minimum of 1200 and for men, 1500 nutrient dense calories a day.
To maintain energy the nutrient balance should be 65-70 percent carbohydrate, 15-20% protein and 20-25% fat. Carbohydrates remain the best choice for fueling muscles and promoting a healthy heart. A 20% fat diet can assure you are not denied the foods that nurture you but limits fat intake to levels that support weight loss.
It’s also important to maintain frequency of meals. Three meals a day is standard in our society but no law says you can’t heat more often. It’s particularly wise to avoid the all-too-common pattern of no breakfast, little or no lunch, and a huge dinner. Several mini-meals of 300-400 calories keep the body’s metabolism elevated.
A varied diet is also important for long term weight loss. Avoid eating large amounts of one type off food–even if it is a nutrient dense food–to the exclusion of others.
Some people have the opposite energy problem. They weigh less than they should and have difficulty putting on weight. Some of the aids to gaining weight are the reverse of techniques suggested for losing weight.
First, start with a nutritionally adequate diet and eat larger meals, more often increasing the energy density of the food. Then, consider a progressive strength training program to add body weight in the form of lean tissue (muscles) while you strengthen the body. If implementing these suggestions does to achieve goal weight, you may need to accept the fact that your body is genetically regulated at a lower level of fatness and maintaining a greater amount of body weight may require more time, effort, and expense than are worthwhile.
Regardless of whether you need or want to lose or gain weight exercise remains the basis for any long term lifestyle goals. A balanced exercise program is the key component of any successful weight loss program. eight loss without exercise can have a negative effect on body composition, especially if weight is regained or lost.
So, exercise, eat a balanced and varied diet, low in fat, low in sugar and high in fiber. If you maintain that regimen the body will find it’s own genetic set point.