When it comes to losing weight and staying fit, there’s usually no shortage of advice. Websites, magazines and numerous advertisements all promise they can help you lose your weight for good. But with so many weight loss options, how do you discover which right for you? Here are some basic tips for how you can choose – or discover – the right weight loss plan.
Consult with an Expert Nutritionist
It is always important to work in conjunction with your GP to lose weight. Having expert guidance is especially important if you’re currently obese or suffering from medical conditions such as diabetes. Before starting any weight loss program, it is best to talk to your GP.
Why is Getting Medical Advice?
Many patients ask why it is so important to get medical advice before embarking on a weight loss plan. Here are the 5 top reasons medical advice is important:
Your GP and dietitian can help you assess whether any existing medical problems are contributing to your weight gain or obesity. For example, thyroid levels are often low in women over 40.
Your GP can also help you determine if any of the medications you’re currently taking are impacting your weight. They can also suggest an alternative medication that is still effective but has less propensity towards weight gain.
3: Rule Out Other Factors
It is important to rule out factors that might make a particular weight loss plan a bad or unworkable.
It is also important to get guidance on what certain weight loss programs may be right for you. Your GP can refer you to a weight loss support group. Having a supportive environment can help a lot for many people.
5: Injury Prevention
If you’re very overweight some forms of exercise might be detrimental for your joints and ligaments. You don’t want to start exercising and have to stop due to injury. So consult with an exercise physiologist or a physiotherapist, rather than a general trainer. This will help minimise your risks of injury.
Consider your Lifestyle & Personal Needs about Eating, Exercising and Weight Loss to get Fit
Just as it is with body contouring plastic surgery, there is no one-size-fits-all weight loss program.
Since every individual is unique, a weight loss consultant or medical professional will ideally advise a custom weight loss plan. Some people who are already active but just over-consume calories may simply need to change their nutritional intake behaviour. Others who eat healthily but never exercise, may respond well to building walking and strength-building exercises into their daily routine.
Yet for some of us, proper diet and exercise may have no effect on our overall body weight or BMI. You and your weight loss support team should take into account important factors that contribute to your health and BMI. These include:
- Stress and how it impacts your eating
- Food preferences
- Eating patterns throughout a day
- How you might use food to reward and/or console yourself after either a bad day or sad event
- Weight loss goals – how realistic they are
- Past success or past weight loss attempts that did not result in weight loss
- How past efforts impacted your psychological or emotional view of losing weight
Before starting any weight loss plan, it may help to think about these factors:
1: Your Experience With Past Diets
Take time to assess your past diets. Consider whether you like or dislike them, and whether you are able to adhere to the diet. What parts of a certain eating regime really worked for your lifestyle and day-to-day activities? And what parts didn’t?
2: Personal Preferences
Do you like to diet on your own? Or do you prefer to lose weight with friends or weight loss support groups? Does dieting or exercising with a friend (or group) help motivate you to lose weight? Or do you find it discouraging?
3: Your Time and Budget
Do the activities of weight loss programs interfere with your daily routine? Does the cost of such a program fit your budget? Weight loss programs require you to purchase prepared meals or supplements, or visit medical facilities or support meetings. This may impact your budget.
The upside is that usually you’ll save on buying other foods. So the net effect on your budget may be less than you think; but in modern times, it IS usually a bit more expensive to eat better (and good gyms aren’t cheap either). So look at it like an investment, however, in you fitness, health and body shape.
Choose a Safe and Effective Weight Loss Plan or Program
Don’t go radical unless your GP says it’s a “must do”. A wide array of weight loss regimens promise “rapid” or “dramatic” weight loss, which is tempting. However, a slow and steady weight loss (up to 2 kilos per week) is typically a safer recommendation. Your optimal weight loss plan should include the right amount of nutrients, according to your body chemistry needs and genetics.
Diets to avoid:
- Weight loss plans or diets that direct you to eat large food quantities of a certain type of food
- Unrealistic weight loss plans that severely restrict what you can eat in any given period of time
- Weight loss plans or diets that require you to completely remove certain food groups from your day to day
- These diets might be fine for healthy individuals, but may also result in nutritional problems
- Can place excess stress on your internal organs
- For example, a high protein may impact your kidney health especially if you have a pre-existing kidney disorder.
Choose a Flexible Weight Loss Program
It may help if you look for a weight loss plan that is not extreme and maintains flexibility and choice in what you eat. It should ideally be balanced across the day, not designed to deprive you of certain food groups (unless you’ve been confirmed as being allergic to certain foods such as a diagnosed gluten intolerance condition).
The best weight loss plans include those that allow you to eat various foods from all of the major food groups, as well as being able to purchase these in your local grocery store rather than through some distribution chain. Be sure to also choose a full program that includes individually-appropriate (or physio approved) physical activities and exercises that can help you boost your weight loss – and keep your endorphins properly elevated to help keep you on track.
The Skinny On Weight Loss and Weight Loss Plans – Be Healthy
Successful weight loss – and staying physically fit over the longer term – require an ongoing commitment to making healthy lifestyle changes in your diet, exercise and even sleeping habits. (If you sleep poorly or lack sleep, or live a very stressful lifestyle, you may end up eating more and gaining more weight than if you had proper sleep and a good work-life balance.
If you’re getting ready for body contouring surgery and need to lose weight before your operation, please send us an enquiry form below, so that our team can aim to assist you in finding the support you need to prepare for your body surgery.
Read the Diet & Nutritional Disclaimers: Every Person is Different and Your Results will Be Unique.
Whatever weight loss plan you follow, you may not lose weight under the same timeline as others because so many factors are involved, so be sure you take into account that results vary from person to person.
Remember that everyone’s weight loss is unique. So try not to compare your body, eating regime or weight changes to those of other people, even if they’re on a similar weight-loss or diet plan. Instead, seek professional advice and opt for a customised plan, and give yourself credit for what you are accomplishing. Remember that long-term weight loss is usually best when slow and steady, and accompanied by lifestyle changes that support a healthier, fitter and lower BMI outcome.
And don’t forget to stay hydrated by drinking enough water – without enough water (H2O) in your system, despite your best weight loss eating plans, your body may not actually release the excess kilos!
References and further Reading on Health and Wellness and Diets
- Health and Wellness for Life. Human Kinetics. pp. 112–. ISBN 978-0-7360-6850-5. Human Kinetics; Human Kinetics (Organization) (2010).
- Dietary protein intake and renal function Published online 2005 Sep 20. doi: 10.1186/1743-7075-2-25 PMCID: PMC1262767 William F Martin, Lawrence E Armstrong, and Nancy R Rodriguez; Nutr Metab (Lond). 2005; 2: 25.
- High-protein diets: potential effects on the kidney in renal health and disease. Friedman AN1. and other references listed below.); Am J Kidney Dis. 2004, Dec;44(6):950-62.
About Dr Barnett: Dr Geoff Barnett is a highly-experienced, renowned Plastic & Reconstructive Australian Surgeon who is based primarily in Hawthorn (Melbourne, Victoria). He is our team’s leading body lift specialist and also performs other types of facial rejuvenation and body shaping plastic surgeries. He performs body lift and rejuvenation surgeries on men and women and operates in accredited hospitals in Melbourne, with highly experienced anaesthetists and a top surgical support team.
Dr Geoff Barnett and his elite surgical support team treat numerous patients who have turned their lives around after weight loss. To discuss your options, please arrange for an initial consultation with Dr Geoff Barnett by submitting a confidential Enquiry Form.