If you are carrying around a few extra pounds or many extra pounds, having the goal to lose weight is a good thing. Reaching and maintaining a healthy weight is vitally important to good health and living a long life. Unfortunately, many people get caught up in losing weight as fast as possible.
If you have been thinking along those lines, you have probably seen and even considered the ads that make promises like, “Lose 10 Pounds in 10 Days.” That sounds great and may even be possible, but the repercussions from that kind of weight loss are not good.
I can understand wanting to lose weight quickly, but it is much smarter to be realistic about how many pounds you can lose within a certain time frame and stay healthy. The general rule for losing weight safely is to no more than 2 pounds per week.
There are methods that will help you to lose quite a bit more than that – especially during the first two weeks of the diet; but . . . I do not recommend them and I am confident that your doctor would tell you the same thing.
ALWAYS talk to your doctor before you start any diet – and listen to him/her.
I am fairly certain that what I just told about 2 lbs/week being a safe weight loss number is fairly common knowledge. In fact, you have probably heard it many times; so, why would you or anyone think that losing more than two pounds per week is a good idea?
Let’s assume that for some reason your doctor says it is OK to go on such an extreme diet. In fact, he tells you that the more you can lose right away, the better. Maybe his reasoning is that you will see dramatic results and start feeling better right away; and those two factors will be great motivators and will help you stick to your diet and exercise plan.
I doubt very much that is going to happen, but let’s say it does – it is not a long-lasting solution! The weight loss is essentially temporary and this is one of the reasons:
- A large portion of your initial weight loss will be water weight. As we all learned in one of our early science classes, the human body is mostly water. Because of that, you can delude yourself into thinking that you have lost weight simply by dehydrating yourself, which you should NEVER do. Besides being dangerous, you will gain all of it back as soon as you start drinking water again. It is possible that technically you could get away with it, but it is not a long-lasting solution.
- The weight you lose through extreme, fast diets almost always comes back, plus some extra.
Now, having made those points, there is one specific healthy strategy that will help you drop a few pounds rather quickly.
- Stop drinking sugar-loaded beverages (Coke, Mountain Dew, Big Gulp, Monster Drinks, etc.). Those beverages are essentially sugar water, coloring, caffeine and additives – loaded with empty calories.
- Coke 12 oz can 140 calories
- Coke 20 oz Bottle 240 calories
- Coke 1 Liter Bottle 400 calories
- 7-Eleven 32 oz Big Gulp Coke 364 calories
- 7-Eleven 44 oz Super Gulp Coke 512 calories
- 7-Eleven 52 oz Xtreme Gulp Coke 585 calories
Losing Weight Is Quite Simple – but Is Not Necessarily Easy
In order to lose weight, you must eat 3,500 fewer calories than you need per week to lose one pound. You can either eat fewer calories; or burn them off through exercise.
Let’s look at it this way:
Eliminate 500 calories/day = 3,500 fewer calories/week = one pound lost.
So, if you want to lose five pounds in one week, all you have to do is cut your caloric intake by 2,500 calories/day for a full week!
Eliminate 2,500 calories/day = 17,500 less calories/week = 5 pounds lost.
It sounds gruesome and dangerous to me. You must eat enough calories to sustain your body, so to cut 2,500 calories per day from you diet would be extreme. It would also be difficult to burn off that many calories (or even a portion of the number) through exercise, even if you are in good physical condition (which is not the case with most overweight people.)
For example: A 160 pound person has to jog at 5 MPH for 60 minutes to burn a measly 584 calories. Walking at 2 MPH for an hour only burns 180 calories. See what I mean? Not realistic!
The reality is that trying to lose weight fast it is not only detrimental to your health, it is very difficult. The only way to lose weight at a healthy pace is through a diet of healthy foods and a steady regimen of exercise. It is not necessarily easy, and will undoubtedly take far more time than you want it to; but it is worth it, once the pounds start coming off and staying off.