The IAPAM’s weight loss physicians offer these tips to help you lose weight or maintain your current weight:
- Drink 2 glasses of water before every meal (it will make you get full faster).
- Display fruits, not sweets. Get rid of the glass covered sweets display, and replace it with a fruit bowl.
- Portion out your snacks. If you are going to have potato chips, fill a bowl with a serving size, then put the big bag away so you can’t see it!
- Plate your meals, don’t eat family style, you’re much more likely to eat more if you placed the proper portion size on a plate.
- Healthy restaurant menus may not be so healthy. According to a study in the Journal of Consumer Research, you’re likely to underestimate a meal’s calorie total by more than a third. Read “Eat This, Not That” to find some of the best restaurant options.
- Alcohol makes you hungry (limit it to one or two glasses per meal)
- Restaurant portions are way too big, your choices are: (1) eat an appetizer, or (2) split an entre (either with another diner, or bring the other half home for another meal).
- When making pasta, reduce the pasta and load up on meat and vegetables (tomatoes, onion, carrots, red peppers, zucchini, etc..)
- Beware of office goodies. The office can be a source of 10-20lbs of fat per year. Skip the cakes, donuts, candies, and chocolates.
- Hungry an hour after a meal? Have a glass of water, or go for a brisk walk.
- Researchers at the University of Massachusetts discovered that people who watched TV while they ate consumed nearly 300 more calories than those who dined without an eye on the tube.
- Slow down while you eat. If you consciously stop to take a breath between bites, you can cut your food (and calorie) intake by 10 percent, according to researchers at the University of Rhode Island. It takes 20 minutes for the news that you’ve had enough to eat to travel from your gut to your brain. Another tip, try talking more between bites.
- Plan for a morning and afternoon snack. An apple travels well, other ideas include the proper portion of nuts (i.e. almonds), protein bars, protein shakes.
- Replace fruit juice with a homemade smoothie made from fruit (frozen or fresh). Quick recipe: 1/2c blueberries, 1 banana, 1 Tbsp peanut butter and/or 1 scoop of whey powder, 2 Tbsp quick cook oats, 1 1/2 cup skim milk.
- Replace fried food with baked. For the breading, use Panko (Japanese style bread crumbs), egg whites, and a small amount of skim milk as a batter.
The Psychology of Weight Loss – Challenges and Tips
Losing weight can be quite a task. If you perform a quick search online on how to lose weight, you will find a ton of websites that will tell you how to lose weight and even make it appear simple. But that is far from the truth. Losing weight requires determination, hard work and the right mindset. It is essential to have a support network if you are serious about losing weight.
In this article, we shall take a look at some of the common obstacles that are encountered when trying to lose weight, and also review some tips on how to overcome these obstacles.
1. Developing the right mindset
When embarking on the road that leads to losing weight, it is essential to develop the right mindset. It is common for negative thoughts to pop into one’s head like ‘what if it is too hard?’ or ‘this is not for me’. It is worthwhile remembering that nothing in life that is worth having ever comes easy. These negative thoughts a fairly common but once you get going on your weight loss plan, you find the results that you see right in front of you will be very encouraging. It is also essential to bear in mind that the changes you need to make to your diet and the amount of exercise that is required every week can be a daunting thought, especially because this will be a completely new routine for you. Try some self talk and always think of what you want to achieve and this should get you on your way to healthy weight loss.
2. Set some goals
In life, we always set certain goals towards which we work. Be it our regular job or even our life plan, there are certain things that we all wish to achieve. The same is true in the case of weight loss. It is essential to set realistic goals and not unrealistic ones like losing 10 kilograms in weight in just a few days. This can be unhealthy. If you’re struggling to set goals, it is always worthwhile speaking to a dietitian or even a personal trainer as they can guide you in the right direction.
3. Keep a clear head
As we all know very well, whatever journey we embark on or whatever we try to achieve, life always gets in the way. This can include, but is not limited to, financial stress, family issues and even health issues. Many people find that exercise is a form of escape from these stresses. Try and stay away from distractions and focus on what it is you want to achieve. If you want to lose weight and you’re determined to do so, nothing should stop you.
4. Have a support network
One of the best ways to lose weight is to avoid attempting it by yourself and having a ‘weight loss partner’ is possible. Make sure that this person is as motivated as you are as any negativity can have a detrimental impact on you achieving your goals.
Physical Activity and Weight Loss
This content is taken from the IAPAM’s Medically Supervised Weight Loss training program. The program is designed to help physicians incorporate a medical weight loss program into their medical practice.
An increase in physical activity is an important component of weight loss therapy, although it will not lead to substantially greater weight loss over 6 months. Most weight loss occurs because of decreased caloric intake. Sustained physical activity is most helpful in the prevention of weight regain. In addition, it has a benefit in reducing cardiovascular and diabetes risks beyond that produced by weight reduction alone. For most obese patients, exercise should be initiated slowly, and the intensity should be increased gradually. The exercise can be done all at one time or intermittently over the day. Initial activities may be walking or swimming at a slow pace. The patient can start by walking 30 minutes for 3 days a week and can build to 45 minutes of more intense walking at least 5 days a week. With this regimen, an additional expenditure of 100 to 200 calories per day can be achieved. All adults should set a long-term goal to accumulate at least 30 minutes or more of moderate-intensity physical activity on most, and preferably all, days of the week.
This regimen can be adapted to other forms of physical activity, but walking is particularly attractive because of its safety and accessibility. Patients should be encouraged to increase “every day” activities such as taking the stairs instead of the elevator. With time, depending on progress and functional capacity, the patient may engage in more strenuous activities. Competitive sports, such as tennis and volleyball, can provide an enjoyable form of exercise for many, but care must be taken to avoid injury. Reducing sedentary time is another strategy to increase activity by undertaking frequent, less strenuous activities.
Long Term Weight Loss and Exercise Studies
Long-term weight loss after diet and exercise: a systematic review.
Source: International Journal of Obesity (London) 2005 Oct; 29(10): 1168-74
Diet associated with exercise produced a 20% greater initial weight loss. (13 kg vs 9.9 kg; z=1.86-p=0.063, 95%CI). The combined intervention also resulted in a 20% greater sustained weight loss after 1 y (6.7 kg vs 4.5 kg; z=1.89-p=0.058, 95%CI) than diet alone. In both groups, almost half of the initial weight loss was regained after 1 year.
CONCLUSION: Diet associated with exercise results in significant and clinically meaningful initial weight loss. This is partially sustained after 1 year.
Effects of the Amount of Exercise on Body Weight, Body Composition, and Measures of Central Obesity
Source: Cris A. Slentz, PhD; et al. Archives of Internal Medicine. 2004;164:31-39.
In non-dieting, overweight subjects, the controls gained weight, both low-amount exercise groups lost weight and fat, and the high-amount group lost more of each in a dose-response manner. These findings strongly suggest that, absent changes in diet, a higher amount of activity is necessary for weight maintenance and that the positive caloric imbalance observed in the overweight controls is small and can be reversed by a modest amount of exercise. Most individuals can accomplish this by walking 30 minutes every day.
It should also be noted other studies say the amount of daily exercise should be closer to 1 hour a day. (Successful Weight Loss Maintenance. Wing, Rena R.; Hill, James O. Annual Review of Nutrition v. 21 (2001) p. 323-41)
Exercise and Abdominal Obesity
No one will dispute the fact if a patient exercises regularly, the benefits are both physical and mental. The patient will most certainly benefit from a cardiovascular workout and a resistance workout. It is also known that building muscles takes a larger amount of calories than doing only cardio work.
Many patients are concerned about getting rid of the spare tire, and are very distressed that they just can’t. One study found limited evidence suggesting that “exercise-induced weight loss” is associated with reductions in abdominal obesity as measured by waist circumference or imaging methods; however, at present there is insufficient evidence to determine a dose-response relationship between physical activity, and abdominal or visceral fat. (Physical activity, total and regional obesity: dose-response considerations. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise. Volume 33(6) Supplement, June 2001, pp. S521-S527)
For more information on the IAPAM’s Clean Start Weight Loss Training, visit https://iapam.com/medical-weight-loss or call 1-800-219-5108 ext. 708.