Losing Weight Without a Fad Diet

So you’re out having coffee with a friend at your favourite café, and you over hear the woman on the table next to you proudly announcing how she lost 4 kilos in a week! “Can you believe it” She exclaims “all I had to do was eat cabbage soup for breakfast, lunch and dinner!”

You ‘re probably thinking that losing 4 kilos in a week sounds great, but ask yourself this, could you live a lifetime of eating cabbage soup for three square meals a day? I know I couldn’t!

Fad diets will always be in fashion because we want results – and we want them now! These fad diets will entertain fast results with minimal effort but what are they really doing for you?

These fast fix methods often set you up for failure because there comes a point when you can no longer stomach another bowl of high octane, gas inducing cabbage soup!  And what generally happens from here is that you go back to old habits and put all the weight back on – sometimes more!

The good news is that you can lose weight without following a strict fad diet routine. The key to weight loss is understanding how your body works in relation to the fuel you put in (food) and your daily output (movement). Food is merely a source of energy for your body. So what goes in must come out (through movement and exercise) for you to maintain your current weight. And if what goes in outweighs the output, you store this unused energy as extra kilograms.

So essentially you need to have an energy deficit (otherwise known as a calorie deficit) for your body to lose weight.  Counting your calories is a good way to ascertain how much energy is going into your body each day. Then on the other side of things, wearing a heart rate monitor during exercise will give you calorie expenditure figures. Then it’s a matter of working out the sums.

For you to get a complete account of your specific energy requirements you’ll also need to work out your Basal metabolic rate (BMR). Your BMR is simply a measure of how many calories your body needs just to function. The equation for BMR is;

Females 655.1 + (9.46 x weight in kg) + (1.85 x height in cm) – (4.48 x age in yrs) = your BMR

Males 66.47 + (13.75 x weight in kg) + (5 x height in cm) – (6.76 x age in yrs) = your BMR

Calculate your BMR plus calorie expenditure (exercise). Then subtract your food intake, which will give you the answer – You may have a calorie surplus or a deficit. And for weight loss, it’s the deficit you want.

For example, you burnt 500 calories in your workout, your BMR is 1450 and your food calories add up to 1300. That leaves a calorie deficit of 650.

500 + 1450 – 1300 = 650

As a blanket guide, for men to lose weight they would consume between 1300 -1800 calories per day (as the total sum after calculating all of the above). And the figure for women is between 1200 – 1500 calories.

So if you’ve read all the way down to here and thought, “wow that seems a like too much hard work”, just simplify things by eating a well balanced diet, while being mindful of portion size, and move your body. Set about scheduling a regular exercise routine. These small lifestyle changes will go a long way over time. And before you know it, the figure on the scales will have dropped. Sounds much nicer than cabbage soup don’t you think!