In today’s world of pills, potions and fix-all diets for just about every weight loss situation the traditional method of counting calories may seem old-fashioned. However, if you talk to trained professionals in the field, they’ll almost invariably all tell you the same thing. The best approach to weight loss is still reducing calorie intake. The generic recommended calorie intake for men is 2,500 and for women 2,000. That’s for the average person living an average lifestyle ie doing a bit of exercise and eating a healthy diet.
Actual requirements though are very much an individual thing and will depend on exactly how much physical activity one does, their age, and their metabolic rate. Some people have a slow metabolism so should eat less. Others have a high metabolism and can eat a lot more without feeling the effects around their hips. Although many diets are designed to restrict calorie intake to 1000 – 1500 daily just reducing intake from 2500 to 2000 (men), and from 2000 to 1500 (women) a day will, in many cases, lead to losing around a pound a week. If you need help doing this comfortably perhaps something like appetite curbing Dragons Den weight loss pills may help.
A pound is around the amount you can reasonably expect to lose comfortably on many diets in fact, although in most cases you’ll probably find you lose more than that during the first few weeks. What you’re losing though is fluid. Once this balances out, your weight loss drops back to a more realistic rate. Whilst this may be disappointing, it’s actually quite normal. If you find a standard diet isn’t working as well as you think it should, consider talking to a dietician and having a diet plan drawn up to suit.
One thing a lot of people forget when they start cutting back on calories is ensuring that what they eat is as nutritious as possible. Sure, you could blow your entire daily calorie allowance on junk food, and probably still lose weight BUT it will come at the expense of your overall health. When you have fewer calories to play with you have to make every mouthful count and this is where getting into the habit of reading labels will pay off. Check the nutrition levels in what you’re eating so you can keep track of your nutritional intake.
It’s important to get enough protein. For women that’s around 50 grams daily and for men around 63 grams. Don’t stint on this. Protein is essential for healthy muscles, bones (including teeth) and skin. Good sources of protein include lean meat (red and white), eggs, beans of the legume variety (peanuts are a particularly good legume source of protein), and nuts. You should aim to have 2 daily servings of protein if possible.
Carbohydrates, although at base they’re just complex sugars, are still a vital component in a healthy, balanced diet. This is where most of your energy comes from. You just need to ensure you don’t go overboard with them. Unfortunately many people find it all too easy to do just that as foods high in carbohydrates are often very filling and for this reason can make up way too much of our meals. If you have trouble curbing your appetite so you don’t keep filling up on calorie-laden carbs, try the pills from the Dragons Den weight loss pill episode. Dieticians though recommend you have at least 100 grams of carbs daily; healthy sources are whole grain pastas, bread, and cereals.
On top of protein and carbohydrates, you should be getting at least 20 grams of fiber as well. A diet with enough fresh fruit and vegetables, whole grains, nuts and seeds will typically supply this. Last but not least, restrict your fat intake. Although some fats are essential in a balanced diet, too much of the wrong types of fats will simply slow down your weight loss efforts. And don’t forget the water! liters a day.