Healthy Weight Loss

If you’re overweight or obese, you may already know that healthy weight loss can reduce your risk of diabetes, heart disease and a host of other health problems. You’re probably also aware that extra weight saps your energy and complicates the already significant risks of a sedentary lifestyle. Even with this knowledge, however, it may be difficult to start a weight loss diet.

How Should I Start a Healthy Weight Loss Program?

Reduce your caloric intake and increase your caloric output. When one matches the other, your weight will stabilize. As long as intake remains lower than output, you’ll experience weight loss. Diet and exercise both play a role in this process.

Since healthy weight loss is such a common goal, the information available may overwhelm you. Creators of new pills, weight loss diet options, machines or fads will always try to capitalize on your situation. Don’t let this affect you. Your goal is simple, clear and within your reach–regardless of your starting point.

Steps on Starting a Healthy Diet

The first step to planning a healthy diet is determining how much weight you’d like to lose and how quickly you’d like to do so. Your weekly healthy weight loss goals should correlate with your starting point. Doctors generally recommend losing one or two pounds per week. Consult a doctor or personal trainer if you need help setting your goals. Consider speaking with a registered dietitian to assist you in your weight loss journey. A dietician can create a weight loss diet plan that’s customized based on your individual needs.

Prepare to be patient and realistic. You can lose weight, but it may not be immediate or at a predictable pace. Even if you exercise more and reduce caloric intake at the same degree for several weeks, some weeks may show greater weight loss than others. Healthy weight loss isn’t an exact science. The only certain truth is that a lifelong change in habits will eventually lead to a lifelong change in body mass.

Put your body into motion more than you currently do, and feed your body less than usual. If your caloric intake drops and your output rises for a consistent period of time, you’ll lose weight.

Remind yourself that getting exercise and eating a healthy diet feel good, though it may not seem so as you begin. Anticipate the best feeling of all: A sense of accomplishment after you’ve made a permanent and healthy life change.

Some Weight Loss Diet Tips

As you proceed with your healthy diet, here are some helpful tips:

  • After a healthy meal, think about how your body feels. Remember this feeling the next time you’re tempted by a cheeseburger.
  • Be steady; patience is sometimes even harder than sit-ups.
  • Have courage! New things are always difficult at first.
  • Welcome support, but be aware that it’s human nature to resist change. Your loved ones may derail your resolve, even unconsciously, out of a desire to maintain the status quo. Don’t be deterred.

Resources (2010). Healthy weight loss and dieting. Retrieved August 31, 2010, from

Mayo Clinic. (2010). Weight loss help: Gain control of emotional eating. Retrieved August 31, 2010, from