Tips to Choose among Diet and Weight Loss Programs to Achieve a Healthy Weight and Keep it Constant

Do you think that you should lose weight and the only way to do that is to take up a diet and weight loss program? If your answer is ‘yes’ you are not alone. You may find several people around you who are overweight or obese or at least having a fat belly, and all these people keep longing for losing weight. Naturally, there are tons of diet and weight loss programs available today. If you want to find one that is appropriate for you, you may be easily daunted. Here are some tips for you to choose such a program.

What to Look for in a Diet and Weight Loss Program?

To achieve and maintain a healthy weight over the long term, you should focus on your overall lifestyle and health habits, and not only what you eat. Ideally diet and weight loss programs should promote healthy habits that will help you lose weight in a safe way, that you can continue and that help you maintain your weight loss. Such a program should include:

  • Lifestyle counseling or behavioral treatment, that can train you about how to develop and continue habits of healthier eating and physical activity.
  • Information on getting sufficient sleep and managing stress
  • Monitoring, ongoing feedback and support throughout the program, either in person or through phone, internet or both
  • Not drastic, but slow and steady goals for weight loss, e.g. 1-2 pounds a week
  • A plan for maintaining the weight loss, e.g. goal setting, tracking such as maintaining a food journal and counseling support

What to Beware Of?

Certain weight loss programs include very low-calorie diets to bring about fast weight loss, e.g. 3 or more pounds per week for many weeks, especially for people with too much of excess weight. While being on such a very low-calorie diet, you should be monitored closely by a doctor.

These diets may help some people lose many pounds quickly, e.g. 15 pounds in a month. However, they may not be helpful in maintaining the weight loss for a long term. Such diets also have health risks associated to them, the commonest being gallstones.

For overweight or obese people, weight loss experts suggest starting with a weight loss goal of 5% to 10% of their starting weight within 6 months. For example, if your weight is 200 pounds, losing 10 pounds (5%) to 20 pounds (10%) of your starting weight within 6 months should be your goal.

Changing your lifestyle is not easy, but developing healthy habits that you won’t give up after a few weeks or months will help you in maintaining your weight loss.

Follow these tips that will help you check and choose from among the different diet and weight loss programs so as to achieve a healthy weight and keep it constant.