Why wait for January 1? Get ahead of the “resolutionists” and start your weight loss efforts today! It might be hard to do during the holiday season, but just imagine how good you’ll feel (and how many pounds you’ll have lost) if you’re well on your way to your goal when everyone else is just getting started!
Today, we kick off a three-part series on losing weight safely. We’re not talking crash dieting or eating nothing but Twinkies — we’re going for a steady approach that meets your nutritional requirements and still encourages weight loss. It’s not flashy and new, but it’s the best way we know to work off those pounds.
First of all, when you want to lose weight you need to reduce your total calorie intake per day. Yes, it’s hard. You’re right, it’s not fun. Unfortunately for you, me and everyone else — it’s just the way it is.
For women, approximately 1200-1500 calories per day is a good goal to lose 1-2 pounds safely per week. For men, approximately 1500-1800 calories per day is a good goal to lose 1-2 pounds safely per week. It is very difficult to get all your nutritional requirements if you fall below these calorie levels.
Make sure you eat from all the food groups in the food pyramid. Never eliminate an entire food group. Your goal should be simply to reduce portions from all the food categories (this will reduce your calorie intake).
The one exception would be a goal to increase your intake from the vegetable category! Your choices of vegetables should be primarily the non-starchy, green leafy variety, which are lowest in calories (for example, broccoli, spinach, salad greens, cauliflower, green beans and carrots).
Coming up next week, we’ll tackle eating out at restaurants and the importance of fiber. For now, resolve to make healthier meal choices and eat less every time you sit down to eat. It makes a difference!