First, let's start with six easy, effective weight loss steps that you can follow today:
Step 1: Determine your caloric needs with this tool.
Step 2: Based on the calculations above and your goals, pick or create a plan that is 250-1000 calories below your recommended daily intake. Do not go below a daily calorie deficit of 1200. If you prefer, select from our list of free diet plans.
Step 6: Set a day each week to report your progress with a specific person that will hold you accountable.
Okay, now on to the research and dirty facts about rapid weight loss plans:
According to many scientists, nutritionists, doctors and other healthcare professionals there is no such thing as a fast weight loss diet that actually promotes long-term health and weight improvements.
Well, that is not entirely true.
There is actually a way to lose fast and keep it off long-term, if and only if, you follow an appropriate maintenance plan.
Please refer to the best way to lose weight fast if you would like more information on that approach. Please be advised though; this really is only recommended for those who have a special event sharply approaching where they need to get fit fast.
Experts on Rapid Weight Loss?
Most expert will tell you, including me generally, rapid weight loss has no benefits for most individuals purely for the reason that it’s easy to shed weight quickly (when you starve yourself which is what rapid weight loss diets are all about!), but next to impossible to keep that weight off once people conclude their starvation tactics and start eating normally again. It is inevitable – weight will just be put back on.
a rapid weight loss diet is really only good for a special event or condition, like temporarily slimming down to get into that fairy tale wedding dress you have always dreamt of wearing or being an actor who needs to transform himself into a skinny prisoner on hunger strike!
The whole point of losing weight is to get to a healthy level and keep it there. Permanence is the key word here.
Whether you need to lose weight for health reasons, or are simply wanting to get slimmer for that wedding dress, the ultimate goal has to be a long-lasting result, doesn't it? Otherwise, what’s the point of bothering? Some people might say, “Well, surely making a start is good? It is a good stepping stone?” But in fact research has proven that when the quick-fix doesn't work, then inertia, and apathy sets in, which prevents those people from ever contemplating making another go of it.
The bottom line is there is no substitute for a good, well-planned weight-loss regimen specifically formulated for you by a nutrition specialist, or professional dietician that will stimulate weight loss in a way that is manageable, and maintainable.
Long-term weight loss can be quite simply achieved…over time. That is the main difference between fast weight-loss plans, and long-term ones. Obvious, really. But if you are genuinely interested in shifting weight, and then maintaining a healthy, consistent level of weight, then a long-term weight loss plan is the only way to go about it.
Without much hardship, or stress on your body, you can lose a good 1-2 pounds a week simply by adopting a few changes in your daily diet, combined with burning a few more calories through exercise.
But there’s the catch. 1-2 pounds? Is that all, in one week? Can’t I just run it all off? Or go to the gym, and do a few Rocky moves, and watch it all be sweated away?
No. Exercise alone will not suffice. It will certainly be required as part of the long-term plan, but simply exercising on its own will not be enough. It’s what you eat that counts. There is no point running 20 miles a day in an effort to shed calories when you only go and put them back on again with your usual fat-inducing meals.
The National Weight Control Registry
According to the National Weight Control Registry (NWCR), the general perception of the public is that long-term weight loss cannot be achieved. But studies by the Registry have proved that 20% of its members adopting sensible weight loss strategies have maintained their weight loss for at least 5 years.
Change your weight by changing your diet. It doesn't get any simpler than that. But then, as the saying goes, doing the simple thing is sometimes the hardest thing to do.
That’s why nutritionists and dieticians have jobs. They are there to help formulate diet plans and exercise regimes, individually tailored to meet your specific needs. They can help get you on the right foot with carefully designed plans that will factor in all the elements of a good diet, in tandem with achievable exercise routines to fit your work or social schedule.
To achieve long-term weight loss, many things will have to be taken into account, but the focus will be on the foods you eat and the amounts, without leaving you feeling unfulfilled.
A long-term diet plan will include drinking more water, eating more fiber-foods (including more fresh vegetables), eating a lot less artificial processed fatty foods (burgers, chips, fried snacks, fizzy drinks), keeping an eye on the calorie content in foods, and cutting down on portion sizes.
At first glance, that might all seem do-able on your own, but when you actually analyze it, there is an awful lot to think about and plan, as much will depend on your weight as it is and how much you need or want to lose.
The drawback to any self-start attempt at reforming your diet is that you may get it all wrong from the beginning. The intentions maybe good, but your over-eagerness might result in over-doing the calorie-counting and under-doing the fiber, or over-dosing on water and cutting back on real food. It is very easy to think you can do it yourself and despite the best of efforts it’s very easy to get yourself in a muddle and before you know it your weight is all over the place and your head is in a spin.
And then you are back at that point we mentioned earlier about losing the drive and ambition to achieve weight loss.
That’s why www.changingshape.com is in existence, with a first-class team of specialists to help people get in shape. We don’t believe in quick-fix illusions, only real-time results…and long-term progress. Using the latest science and research, the team at changingshape.com offer personalized health and fitness programs developed by certified nutrition and fitness professionals that shape exercise and meal plans based on the specific calories and nutrients a body needs to achieve real results for continual well-being.
Matthew Johnson (Google+) is a certified personal trainer, nutrition expert and an on-line fitness consultant that started ChangingShape.com back in 2001.