Reducing Weight Through Diets
It’s the age of instant gratification. Anything that you want is available readily enough. If you want to eat a patty or a pizza or any other food, you don’t have to prepare the dough from scratch and so on. All you need to do is call up the nearest pizza outlet and order a pizza of your choice. Or just open your refrigerator, as most processed foods are available, ready to be opened and eaten. But have you ever thought what this increase of consumption in processed foods means? It is this trend that is the main reason for the increase in obesity now as compared to the 1980’s. More than being a cosmetic concern, obesity is the major health concern of the day. Being obese, you are at an increased risk for diabetes, heart troubles and exposed to certain kinds of cancer.
So what do you do to reduce your weight? Go in for dieting. Did you know that these diets help you in reducing weight, but only till you strictly follow the diet? Once you get back to the normal dietary habits, the lost weight returns. So how can you lose weight permanently? Permanent weight loss takes time and involves a change in eating and exercise habits.
Before starting on any diet issue, you need to understand the term calorie. In scientific terms, one calorie is the amount of heat necessary to raise the temperature of one gram of water by one degree Celsius. You often hear the term calorie associated with foods. In food terms, a calorie is the amount of food required by the body to produce one unit of energy. All foods are not equal in terms of calories. Fat gives about nine calories per gram whereas for carbohydrates and proteins the figure is four calories. When you eat food, your body burns it down and in the process, some heat is generated. This heat is the calories that this food gives.
What you eat daily is your diet. Reducing your daily intake and hence the number of calories, with a limited selection of food comprises a reducing diet. A reducing diet is a diet that is limited in quantity but includes all the food groups and not limited to one kind of food.
Whatever goes into your mouth is processed to give out energy and the method, which produces this energy, is known as metabolism. The calories that your body requires to maintain its basic function are known as basal metabolic rate (BMR). Your BMR is 10 times your current weight in pounds if you are a woman and 11 times if you are a man. To maintain your weight you need 30-50% more calories in your diet, above the BMR.
Is exercise necessary to lose weight?
No diet is successful without following an exercise schedule. Exercise helps you in keeping your body fat down and improves the ability of your heart, lungs and blood vessels to utilize oxygen. It also promotes the burning of fat efficiently for energy. This helps in preventing fat deposition in the body and you do not gain weight, rather lose it more efficiently. At the same time, exercises build your muscle strength, thus improving your skeletal structure.
How should you lose weight?
The simple answer to this question is to take in fewer calories and exercise regularly. This can be done either by eating less or by increasing your physical activity. But always remember, not to cut down your calories drastically. Your intake should be sufficient to meet your target weight and maintain the basic functions of the body. If this is not done, the body shifts to a state of starvation and reduces the metabolic rate and instead of burning fat, starts burning muscle. The only way to prevent this is to avoid drastic cut down in your food and to increase your physical activity substantially. The most important thing is not to set unrealistic goals. Set goals that can be achieved.
These recommendations do not promise any quick weight loss but will help you understand the importance of certain key elements that are necessary for maintaining your weight.