Is Your Weight Loss Healthy?

Is your weight loss healthy? While experts agree that most of us should lose weight, it is equally important that it be done in a healthy way. Here are five easy tips to consider.

1. Lose weight slowly. While we would all love to lose all those extra pounds overnight, it won't happen. In fact, it shouldn't happen. Losing weight too quickly puts a strain on your bodily functions and could set you up for some serious health problems down the road. If you lose more than one to two pounds per week, you are also more likely to gain it all back again and then some. The idea is to lose weight gradually so you are learning new habits to carry you through the rest of your life.

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2. Eat less. Despite the many diet books and articles out there that claim there are certain "secret" foods that help you lose weight, it all really comes down to this: To lose weight you must either eat fewer calories and/or burn more calories. By consuming fewer calories, your body will have to rely on your fat stores for energy. That's why you lose weight.

3. Eat sensibly. Your body needs a certain amount of a variety of nutrients to function properly. That's why you need to eat a variety of fruits, vegetables, protein and whole grains. If you stuff yourself with junk food that does absolutely nothing good for you, you won't have time or room for the healthy stuff your body craves. It's really easy to eat right-- just follow the food pyramid.

4. Get moving. Our bodies were made to move. By exercising, you are burning more calories and building muscle that helps burn the fat off. Again, it's really a very easy way to make your weight-loss healthy: just three ten-minute walks each day can help you burn calories and fat. If you have more time, take a longer walk or check out other activities that get you moving. You don't have to become a professional athlete, just get off the couch.

5. Skip the lotions and potions. All those weight-loss pills and powders are mainly a way for manufacturers to get your money. While most of them are harmless, if used correctly, the weight may come right back once you start taking them. There are some concerns about long-term health risks with some of these products. You are likely to be better off if you just keep away from them.

There you have it: five ways to keep your weight loss healthy. With common sense and patience, you will get the body you've always wanted.

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