Pssst…Want to Know the Secrets to Permanent Weight Loss?

Shocked Weight Loss Girl

When it comes to weight loss, people have a tendency to imagine it’s something they can set their minds to for a brief period, achieve and then move on with their lives eating the same junk food and leading the same sedentary lives they were leading prior to weight loss. Unfortunately, weight loss isn’t like a gadget you spend money on and expect to work. In order to achieve permanent weight loss, what you really need to do is focus on making lifestyle changes. Do you keep swivelling in a chair all day and find no time for exercise? Change that. Do you tend to binge or eat when you’re bored? That one’s got to go too. Do you indulge your sugar cravings on a regular basis? You definitely have to keep a check on that as well!

Sure, if you want to lose weight immediately, there are a hundred fad diets out there to get you the results you want. There are even magic pills and tummy reduction belts that promise the moon. But rest assured, this kind of weight loss is not permanent.1 The minute you turn your head away from your diet, your body will surely replace all the weight you lost and then you’ll be back in square one – only with less motivation to attempt it all over again. The secret to permanent weight loss is about first gauging your activity level, your need for energy and focussing on consuming just enough calories per day to help you burn excess fat deposits by way of physical activity.

So, the first thing you do is calculate your Body Mass Index. If your BMI is normal, you will need to pursue a moderate exercise regimen combined with a certain type of diet depending on whether your daily activity level is low, moderate or high. This will differ radically if your BMI indicates that you are overweight, obese or even under weight. A good way to gauge your activity level would be to check if you do some kind of intense aerobic activity at least three times a week for 30 minutes. If so, your activity level may be considered moderate. Anything more than three times a week and/or up to 60 minutes per session may be considered high. Once you have these details, it is important to follow a healthy balanced diet made up of fresh vegetables, whole grains, fresh fruits and lean meats and poulty.2

On the path to permanent weight loss, it is easy to neglect your nutritional needs. Many people focus on reducing calories without paying any attention to the kind of calories they take in. For example, a low protein diet may result in an un-toned body that not only jiggles but is also under-nourished. So it isn’t just important to lose the flab but also ensure that you have a healthy, toned, muscular body that stays that way for good. This is why it’s vital that you pay attention to the kind of food you eat.

Some of the lifestyle changes you need to make to ensure permanent weight loss are:

  • Maintain a food journal – at least initially, this helps you keep track of your food habits. You will also tend to be more conscious of what you put in your mouth and avoid emotional eating
  • Permanent weight loss is almost never easy when a healthy breakfast isn’t part of the game plan. A bowl of high fibre cereal and a plantain should take care of your nutritional needs at the start of the day. Research has show that dieters who skip breakfast are less likely to achieve their weight loss goals than those who take time to eat breakfast.
  • If you want to snack on something in between meals, choose a fruit. Fruits have very few calories so it’s totally okay to snack on fruits even all day long
  • Make sure you include enough protein in your meals. Protein is not only known to suppress the appetite, it also helps develop lean muscle mass which is essential to maintain a good metabolic rate.
  • You can never really hope to achieve permanent weight loss if you don’t also focus on cutting down on your portions. Some people find it easy to give up on calorie-high foods but ensure that they make up for it with large portions of food at every meal. This won’t get you anywhere. So if you are particularly hunger-stricken, it may be a good idea to begin with a bowl of salad or have a glass of water before you go for your meal
  • Don’t forget exercise. While a balanced diet and self control is one part of the deal, the only way you can hope to burn those excess fat deposits is by ensuring you have a serious cardio routine. Find time to do moderate exercise 150 minutes per week. Divide it up any way that is convenient for you.
  • Another secret to permanent weight loss is ensuring you don’t feel deprived. Many dieters make the mistake of completely abstaining from their favourite foods and sugar treats. While it may work and get you the results you want initially, it will soon sneak up behind you and bite you at a weak moment when you’re feeling deprived and you’ll end up binging. Before you know it, your entire weight loss program will go crashing to the ground. So wise up and allot a day every week for indulgence. It could simply mean you order your favourite take-out for lunch or have a dessert you particularly love after dinner. There’s no need to go overboard and since you get to do it every week, the temptation to go to the other extreme is minimized.

Remember that permanent weight loss is only possible when you make permanent lifestyle changes. You want to follow a weight loss program that you are able to use for the rest of your life and not just as a temporary fix.3 Weight loss and maintenance is a lifestyle choice – one that allows the body to burn excess fat permanently.  Just like we don’t get overweight overnight, it’s going to take a good long while to melt those fat deposits. But if you stay committed to your exercise and diet routine, there is no reason you shouldn’t be able to achieve permanent weight loss in the near future!


 1 Weighing the Evidence in Diet Ads. (Nov 2004) Retrieved from Federal Trade Commission at: www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/health/hea03.shtm

2 Diets. (2011) Retrieved from MedlinePlus at: www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/diets.html.

3 Characteristics of Safe Weight Loss Programs. (2011) Retrieved from Michigan Health & Wellness at: www.michigan.gov/surgeongeneral/0,4675,7-216-33084_33098-102780–,00.html


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