A Journey to Better Health 1. I mastered more new things on this fat reduction issue. Want to share your own success story? She stays motivated to stay in shape by competing in bodybuilding competitions. Calories in versus calories out, to an extent. She takes kickboxing classes and has run a marathon.
2. Soleil Moon Frye
In , the "Journal of the American Medical Association" published a trial comparing the heart disease risks of people on a variety of different popular commercial weight loss programs.
The researchers enrolled participants with known risks for cardiovascular disease and assigned them to adhere to one of four weight loss programs for two months. After one year, the researchers concluded that each diet modestly reduced the body weight and several heart disease risk factors.
Adherence to the diet, however, was low. Those who were able to follow their diet experienced a reduced risk of potential cardiac disease symptoms. Weight loss programs are luring customers in with phony claims, exaggerated performance promises and even flat-out lies. The average amount of weight lost in testimonial advertisements was 70 lbs. Some ads insinuated that customers could conceivably drop 8 to 10 lbs. Diet plans are not cheap. In , "Forbes" magazine compared the cost of a weekly menu from 10 popular diets.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that more than 66 percent of Americans are either trying to lose weight or maintain their current weight. Weight loss programs are profiting from the fat epidemic in this country.
Video of the Day. The Top 10 Weight-Loss Programs. Mix your preferred drinks with a splash of the low-cal option, then increase the ratio as your taste buds adjust. And don't forget to keep pouring that ultimate beverage, says Magee: Down some water before a meal and you won't feel so famished, says David Anthony, an information technology consultant from Atlanta.
Magee, who also writes the "Healthy Recipe Doctor" blog for WebMD, adds that for the compulsive snacker it's a great idea to keep no-calorie beverages at hand "as a way to keep your mouth busy and less likely to snack on junk food. Going to a party? Grab a low-cal drink in one hand and keep it there. Not only does it make it harder to graze the buffet, but you'll also be less tempted to sip endless cocktails, too.
Finally, keeping your body refreshed with plenty of water may also help your workout, says Anthony. Staying hydrated means "I can exercise more, and longer, than if I don't drink water. With the massive meals served at so many American restaurants, it's easy to go Dutch -- with the dinner plate.
That way, we don't feel stuffed, and we save some money. You can share more than just a meal out. Why not double up on a bicycle built for two? Go halves on the cost of a personal trainer? Maybe split a gym membership? The American Heart Association knows what we love: And they also know we need to get more exercise. So why not combine the two, they ask?
Try dancing to the music when you tune into your favorite music show, or practice some stress-relieving cardio boxing when your least favorite reality contestant is on camera. During commercials pedal your stationery bike, walk the treadmill, or slip in a little strength training doing bicep curls with cans of your favorite fizzy beverage as weights.
Or get inspired to really focus: Put in a high-energy exercise DVD and get motivated by the pros onscreen. It doesn't matter exactly what you do, so long as you're up and active. Aim for at least 15 minutes, says the AHA. If you get really engrossed, you just might outlast the last survivor. That's because while a small portion served on a large plate can leave you craving more, a smaller plate gives the visual signal that you already have more. We know we've had enough because we see the bottom of our bowl or plate.
And don't forget smaller bowls, cups, and spoons. For example, try savoring a bowl of ice cream with a baby spoon. Not only does the pleasure last longer, but your body has time to register the food you've eaten. When your weight loss efforts lead to boredom or too much self-focus, get occupied with something else.
So take a break from the siren-call of the tube, and get occupied with things that have nothing to do with food. For some, that might mean becoming involved with local politics, discovering yoga, or enjoying painting. Or maybe you want to help a child with a science project, repaint the bedroom, or take a class.
Have a life outside of weight loss. Then at least eat your meals at the table. While cultivating that virtue isn't exactly painless, it may help to know that keeping weight off generally gets easier over time. That's the result of a study published in Obesity Research, where researchers found that for people who had lost at least 30 pounds -- and kept it off for at least two years -- maintaining that weight loss required less effort as time went on. So if you crave the results reported by successful "losers" like these -- improved self-confidence, a boost in mood, and better health -- cultivate patience.
You may find your way to sweet and nearly painless weight loss success. If 10 tips for painless weight loss or maintenance aren't enough, how about trying some of these ideas from WebMD's weight loss community members?
Women's Health Feature Stories. Add, Don't Subtract Forget diet denial: Try adding foods to your diet instead of subtracting them.
Forget About Working Out If the word "exercise" inspires you to creative avoidance, then avoid it. Go Walking Walking when the weather's nice is a super-easy way to keep fit, says Diane Virginias, a certified nursing assistant from New York.
Continued No sidewalks in your neighborhood?