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Best Weight Loss Strategy

If you want to reduce your body fat, focus on increasing the amount of exercise you get rather than decreasing your food intake. A recent national study was done using two groups of sedentary men, one group in their 20's and the other over age 65. A lot was learned from this accumulated data and it is interesting to note that there was a significant relationship between lack of physical activity and fat. Not surprisingly, the most sedentary men had the most body fat.

These studies have also indicated that the government current recommended daily allowance for calories does not correlate with the body's actual energy needs. For example, although 2400 calories have been calculated for older men, they in fact burned an average of 2800 calories daily. The leading experts now recommend that people who want to lose weight start increasing their physical activity. Just being more active in general (such as climbing the stairs instead of taking the elevator, moving around instead of sitting still, sitting up instead of lying down as well as showing some excitement and enthusiasm instead of boredom), are things that more effectively burns calories and reduces body fat. Everyone seems to have lost sight of the value of being active. Consider this, a half-hour aerobic workout accounts for far less energy expenditure than our minute-to-minute movement in the office or at home.

Millions of Americans are trying to lose weight, spending approximately $30 billion a year on diet programs and products; often they do lose some weight. But, if you check with the same people five years later, you will find that nearly all have regained whatever weight they lost. A national panel recently sought data to determine if any commercial diet program could prove long-term success. Not a single program could do so. Being seriously overweight and particularly obesity predisposes individuals to a number of diseases and serious health problems, and it's now a known fact that when caloric intake is excessive, some of the excess frequently is saturated fat.

People who diet without exercising often get fatter with time. Although your weight may initially drop while dieting, such weight loss consists mostly of water and muscle. When the weight returns, it comes back as fat. To avoid getting fatter over time, increase your metabolism by exercising regularly. Walking is one of the best exercises for strengthening bones, controlling weight, toning the leg muscles, maintaining good posture and improving positive self-concept. To lose weight, it's more important to walk for time than speed. Walking at a moderate pace yields longer workouts with less soreness - leading t more miles and more fat worked off on a regular basis. High intensity walks on alternate days help condition one's system. But in a walking, weight-loss program, you are not required to walk an hour every day as some people would have you believe.

When it comes to good health and weight loss, exercise and diet are inter-related. Exercising without maintaining a balanced diet is no more beneficial than dieting while remaining inactive. Once you have made up your mind to lose weight, you should make that commitment and go into it with a positive attitude. We all know that losing weight can be quite a challenge. In fact, for some, it can be downright tough. It takes time, practice and support to change lifetime habits. But it's a process you must learn in order to succeed. You and you alone are the one who has the power to lose unwanted pounds. Think like a winner, and not a loser - - remember that emotions are like muscles and the ones you use most grow the strongest. If you always look at the negative side of things, you'll become a downbeat, pessimistic person. Even slightly negative thoughts have a greater impact on you and last longer than powerful positive thoughts.

Negative thinking doesn't do you any good; it just holds you back from accomplishing the things you want to do. When a negative thought creeps into your mind, replace it reminding yourself that you're somebody, you have self-worth and you possess unique strengths and talents. Contemplate what lies ahead of you. Losing weight is not just about diets. It's about a whole new you and the possibility of creating a new life for yourself. Investigate the weight loss programs that appeal to you and that you feel will teach you the behavioral skills you need to stick with throughout the weight-loss process. First you should look for support among family and friends. It can be an enormous help to discuss obstacles and share skills and tactics with others on the same path. You might look for this support from others you know who are in weight loss programs and you can seek guidance from someone you know who has lost weight and kept it off.

There are success stories across the country today. On television and in newspapers, magazines and tabloids about people who have miraculously lost untold pounds and kept it off. In all instances they say their mental attitude as well as their outlook on life has totally changed.

Diets and weight loss programs are more flexible now than they once were and there are many prepared foods already portioned out. They are made attractive and can be prepared in a matter of minutes. Low-fat and low-calorie foods are on shelves everywhere.

You will probably need to learn new, wiser eating skills. You will want a weight loss regimen that gives you some control, rather than imposing one rigid system. Look for one that offers a variety of different eating plans, so you can choose the one that's best for you.

Keep in mind, too, that your weight loss program will most likely include some physical exercises. Look at the exercising aspect of your program as fun and recreation and not as a form of grueling and sweaty work. The fact is that physical fitness is linked inseparable to all personal effectiveness in every field. Anyone willing to take the few simple steps that lie between them and fitness will shortly begin to feel better, and the improvement will reflect itself in every facet of their existence.

Doctors now say that walking is one of the best exercises. It helps the total circulation of blood throughout the body, and thus has a direct effect on your overall feeling of health. There are things such as aerobics, jogging, swimming and many other exercises which will benefit a weight loss program. Discuss the options with your doctor and take his advice in planning your exercise and weight loss program.

Roy Chan, CPA, CFP

Senior Health Ezine Editor

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