Americans are heavier now than we have ever been. Every day I see people who tell me they are doing all the right things but they just can’t lose weight. They exercise. They diet. They eat healthy foods. But they just can’t get the weight off. Unfortunatley, people really DO try to do what they have heard so many professionals have told them. Sometimes, that advice has not really been correct. Here are five tips that will help you to lose the weight for good.

Have a plan. This one is so important. Lots of people choose to “eat less fried foods” or “cook at home more” but these ideas are very vague and super easy to cheat on. Studies consistently show that the people who are most successful follow a specific plan. Count calories. Count carbs. Buy a diet book and follow all the rules. It seems it is just human nature to let yourself cheat a little. And then one cheat leads to more cheats. If there are defined rules, you are much less likely to break them than if they are vague.

Weigh Often. I know everyone says its better not to weigh daily but that is not what the studies say. There are multiple studies showing that more frequent weighing is associated not only with more weight loss but also with better maintenance of weight loss. No one has been able to determine exactly why this is, but I suspect seeing that weight on a regular basis alters the behavior of the person weighing just a little. It is true that some people can beome a little smaller in therir clothes and it won’t show up on a scale but this is minimal. Real weight loss will show up. It is important to know where you stand so you can adjust you habits accordingly.

Only eat when you are hungry. Americans have been conditioned to never miss a meal or a snack. This is aboslutely not a good thing. Of course you should speak with your doctor before skipping meals regularly, but most people can easily miss meals and definitely snacks. Constantly snacking keeps blood glucose levels high and thus insulin levels too. Fasting has been shown to decrease blood pressure, insulin and glucose levels. That’s not to say you should not eat if you are hungry. Unfortunately too many people don’t have time to eat well so they grab unhealthy food thinking they need SOMETHING. If you want to minimize low blood sugars be sure to consume meals high in protein rather than carb dense foods before skipping a meal.

Don’t forget protein. A meal or snack high in protein has many benefits. Protein can help you to to feel full and satisfied for longer. Typically, there is no need to restrict protein and that feels better too than being told you can only have so much of something. Protein is harder to digest than carbohydrates too. If you are working out, having adequate protein will help with muscle building. Unfortunately many people don’t get adequate amounts of protein to maintain muscle mas as they get older anyway so eating more protein has other benefits too.

Seek help from an obesity doctor. I feel so badly when a patient comes in frustrated about not being able to lose weight. Most of the time they are REALLY REALLY trying. Unfortunately, pople often believe things that are good for them that really aren’t. Or they think that exercise is the only thing needed to lose weight. By seeking the help of a physician you can sit and take the time to discuss what you are doing and then have the opportunity to learn a better way or correct simple mistakes. You might have the option to use medication or other tools like a continuous glucose monitor to get real time feedback on your food or activity choices.

Losing weight and keeping it off is not easy. But there are definitely strategies out there to be more successful. These are simple things that can equal a big difference. Make sure to talk to your doctor before making any big diet or exercise changes and then get out there and be successful!

Camryn Lee


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