4 Easy Weight Loss Strategies
There are thousands of studies every year looking into ways to lose weight. It can get confusing knowing what advice to follow and some of the recommendations feel unrealistic in a busy life. Being a healthy weight and eating a healthy diet are not things that can be done intermittently. It needs to be a lifelong commitment. However, your needs will change over the course of your life and the strategies you use will change but here are some simple things that may help:
Eat a Plant Based Diet
Last year a review of the evidence found adopting a plant based diet could help in the prevention of obesity. In addition plant based diets tend to be of a higher quality with improved nutrient levels and fibre compared to other weight loss diets. The researchers conclude that plant based diets should be considered a good option for the treatment and prevention of overweight and obesity (1).
Get Off the Chair
Avoid sitting down for long periods by getting up, walking around or doing some stretching regularly. There’s no need to join a gym or to take up a sport just get up and move around as often as possible. Small bursts of exercise are just as good as long stints so everytime you have a spare 5 or 10 minutes use it to walk, run, dance, or move in whatever takes your fancy (2).
This does not usually mean total water fasting but is a term used for following a schedule that involves some times or days where calories eaten are significantly reduced. Allowing the body to go hungry intermittently seems to reset the metabolism and have many beneficial effects so it’s worth a try (3). There are various methods for doing this including:
- Extending the overnight fast so that it lasts 12, 14 or 16 hours every day. This can be done by eating dinner earlier in the evening and/or having the first meal of the day later.
- Spending one or two days each week eating just 500-1000 calories a day but eating normally the rest of the week.
- 2 weeks on 2 weeks off – this involves going on a reduced calorie diet for 2 weeks, eating normally for 2 weeks, then switching back to the lower calorie diet for another 2 weeks and so on.
NB: Fasting does not suit everyone so always check with your doctor or medical specialist before embarking on any dietary or lifestyle changes.
Join a Weight Loss Group
Research shows that being part of a weight loss support group, be it on line or in person, increases the chances of meeting your weight loss goals. Sharing successes and set backs and being accountable can increase motivation.
- 1. Turner-McGrievy G, Mandes T, Crimarco A. A plant-based diet for overweight and obesity prevention and treatment. J Geriatr Cardiol. 2017 May;14(5):369-374.
- 2. Lara A, Yancey AK, et al. Pausa para tu Salud: reduction of weight and waistlines by integrating exercise breaks into workplace organizational routine. Prev Chronic Dis. 2008 Jan;5(1):A12.
- 3. Obert J, Pearlman M et al. Popular Weight Loss Strategies: a Review of Four Weight Loss Techniques. Curr Gastroenterol Rep. 2017 Nov 9;19(12):61. doi: 10.1007/s11894-017-0603-8.