Although there are many different diets that will help you shed unwanted pounds, long-term weight management often proves to be a more difficult task. After all, who wants to eat nothing but water, carrots, and grapefruit for the rest of her life? To lose weight and keep it off, you need to come up with a plan that is realistic for your personality and lifestyle.
Most diet plans focus on a 1,200, 1,500, or 1,800 calorie diet, but requirements for weight maintenance will be higher. The number of calories you need to consume to maintain your current weight is based on your height, weight, age, sex, and activity level. There are several websites that offer free calculators you can use to determine your recommended daily calorie intake.
For weight management, your diet should include a variety of healthy and nutritious foods. Ideally, your diet should include lots of grains, fruits, and vegetables. Weight Watchers, one very popular program for weight control, also suggests focusing on ways to obtain lean protein and fiber to help keep you feeling satisfied between meals.
Generally speaking, there are no "bad" foods that must be avoided if you are interested in weight management. It's not a good idea to indulge in fast food every day or to make a habit of grabbing a candy bar from the vending machine in your office each morning, but the occasional treat will help you avoid feelings of deprivation. When you're trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle, it's best to make moderation your goal.
Technically, it's possible to control your weight through diet alone. However, exercise should always be looked at as an important part of a healthy lifestyle. If you don't want to join a gym and you hate formal team sports, simply look for smaller ways to incorporate more physical activity into your day. Biking to work, taking a walk on your lunch break, or playing at the park with your kids after supper are all good ways to burn extra calories and achieve your weight management goals.
While people interested in weight management shouldn't weigh themselves on a daily basis, it's a good idea to get in the habit of tracking your weight on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. Knowing approximately how much you weigh at any given time will make it easier to control your weight. If you see the pounds creeping on, simply renew your focus on healthy eating and regular exercise.