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There is a time in everyone’s life when you start experiencing mild discomforts like a pain in the joints, lethargy, bad mood and more serious ones like hypertension, diabetes etc. Often, doctors will tell you that these problems are associated with the excess weight that you have gained.
What is Metabolism?
Metabolism is the ability to convert the food that you eat into energy. When you are young, metabolism is high, but as you age, this ability slowly comes down. Stress also causes a further decline in metabolism.
The food that we eat contains 2 groups of nutrients:
- Macronutrients: Protein, Fats, and Carbohydrates
- Micronutrients: Vitamins and Minerals
Of these groups, macronutrients are converted to energy, whereas the micronutrients help in proper functioning of the body.
Why does excess weight gain happen?
Excessive weight gain occurs when the quantity of macronutrients taken into the body far exceeds the metabolic rate.
When the body is unable to convert all the food into energy, the excess is converted into fat and stored in the body to be converted to energy as needed.
The excessive weight gain is because of all this extra fat stored in the body.
What is “excessive” weight gain?
Your weight should be in proportion to your height. Your bone structure is built to withstand a certain amount of weight, which is appropriate for your height. Anything more than what the bone structure can withstand qualifies as excess weight. This extra weight puts a pressure on the skeletal system and your heart.
The amount of energy that food provides to the body is measured in calories. If the number of calories obtained from food is less than what the body needs, then it is called a calorie deficit. To go through weight loss, the body must always be in a calorie deficit state.
How to set weight loss goals?
- Determine your ideal body weight. The ideal body weight would depend on your gender, activity level, age, and There are a lot of tools online which will help you determine this.
- Set small goals. The ideal weight loss rate is about half a kg to one kg per week (one to four pounds). Small goals are easier to achieve to and track. Achieving smaller goals will help you keep motivated.
- Your final target goal would be to reach your ideal body weight. Never lose sight of the target goal.
- Once you reach your target goal, revise it to maintain it at that level, and then aim to become more fit.
- Use a tracking application like MyFitnessPal to track your goals and progress. It will give you a clear indicator of where you are and what you need to achieve.
Patience is the key. You did not gain all that weight overnight, so you will not be able to lose it overnight as well.
How to achieve your weight loss goals?
1: Calculate how much calories your body needs. There are plenty of online tools and mobile apps that allow you to do this.
2: Plan your diet in such a way that you are in a deficit state.
3: Focus on clean eating and exercising, along with the diet.
4: Experience the benefits that you are gaining with the weight loss, such as better sleep, more stamina and a general improvement in the mood. These benefits on the side will provide you with more encouragement to keep losing weight.
5: Reward yourself occasionally to celebrate your goals and to keep you going. However, take care that you do not undo all the hard work by binging.
6: Get a buddy or a fitness tracker to track your progress. It is a great motivator.
7: If you happen to fall off the wagon, do not give up. It is OK to lose track occasionally. Just continue your diet and exercise from the next day.
8: Take help from a personal trainer or a dietician, if you feel the need to do so.
9: If you hit a plateau during your journey, try things like increasing or decreasing your calorie intake, changing the food type that you eat, by fasting intermittently or increasing your activity level.
10: Always weigh yourself at the same time of the day, and never more than once a week.
Remember that the scale can fluctuate because of a lot of reasons, like weighing immediately after eating, or water retention. Try not to lose focus because of these factors.