Weight Loss & Maintenance
By Christine Haas, MS, CNS, CPT, Licensed Nutritionist
Washington Nutrition Group
Weight Loss & Maintenance
Two-thirds of Americans are overweight. In most cases of significant weight gain, high blood pressure, adult on-set diabetes and other chronic illness will result. Different factors contribute to obesity, but with an effective nutrition program a significant amount of weight can be lost and maintained for life.
Different factors contribute to weight gain
The amount of calories needed each day for weight maintenance, known as resting metabolic rate (RMR) is usually determined by genetics. Each individual has a unique RMR. As we age, RMR will decrease, although an effective eating strategy can increase RMR. The environment we live in today unfortunately does not encourage healthy eating and exercising patterns. Instead, todays environment is dominated by speed and convenience resulting in more food consumption and less physical activity.
What does an effective weight loss plan look like?
Weight loss is the best prevention and cure for many chronic health issues such as high blood pressure and adult onset diabetes. Weight is lost when fewer calories are consumed than burned on a daily basis. This initial concept is understood by most, but to achieve weight loss goals and keep the weight off patients need a weight loss program that produces immediate results without hunger. An effective weight loss program must also be motivating, easy to follow at home and in restaurants, reasonably priced, nutritionally sound, physician approved, research supported and designed for a life time.
How to lose weight and keep it off.
A weight loss plan that is designed for a life time should have three phases; the weight loss phase, a transition period and a weight maintenance program. During the weight loss phase, low calorie, low fat, and nutritionally balanced meals should be combined with nutrition counseling. The timing, portion size and nutrient composition of meals should be designed to create rapid weight loss while preserving muscle tissue, and to eliminate physical hunger while providing energy. To keep the metabolism up and blood sugar levels stable, meals should be consumed six times a day.
A transition phase should be implemented carefully under the supervision of a licensed nutritionist when there are only 5-10 pounds left to lose. Weight loss will slow, but will continue while a variety of foods are incorporated. Once the goal weight is achieved, weekly nutrition support should encourage a weight maintenance plan to include healthy snacks and portion control.
For effective weight loss results in the shortest amount of time possible without sacrificing health, contact a nutritionist who has experience and success coaching clients through a comprehensive three phase weight loss and weight maintenance program.
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