Whether you just need to lose a few pounds or are undergoing a total body makeover, chances are you want to reach your goals as quickly as possible. Companies that design fad diets and weight loss pills prey on this desire, often promising overnight results with very little effort.
Unfortunately, most of these crash diets or ‘miracle’ pills fail, leaving you worse off than when you started. In some cases, they may even be dangerous to your health. Crash diets often restrict food so much that they result in nutrient deficiencies. Likewise, diet pills can have unwanted side effects, some of which can be serious. Rather than putting your body at risk, it is far smarter to look for safe ways to lose weight quickly. While there is no magic bullet that will give you overnight results, the following tips will help you see results quickly without jeopardizing your health:
1. Start by determining exactly how many calories you need to eat each day. The easiest way to figure this out is by using an online calorie calculator. Using your height, weight, age, activity level, and gender, these calculators can tell you exactly how many calories you need to eat to maintain your current weight.
2. Decide how much weight you want to lose each week. Most medical professionals recommend losing no more than two pounds a week. Although this may seem slow, the pounds add up quickly and you will reach your goal weight before you know it. More importantly, however, you will do it in a way that is safe and that will provide lasting results.
3. Calculate the number of calories you need to eat to reach your goal. To lose one pound, you need to cut out 3500 calories through a combination of diet and exercise. Therefore, if your goal is to lose two pounds a week, you need to figure out how to remove 1000 calories per day from your diet.
Using the figure from step one, subtract 1000 calories from the number of calories you need to eat to maintain your current weight. If you want to lose weight through diet alone, this is the number you should use for your daily caloric intake. Just make sure that the number is not lower than 1,200 calories since that is the minimum amount you should eat each day.
If you also plan to exercise, determine how many calories your chosen workout will burn each day. For instance, if you walk at 3 miles per hour for 30 minutes, you will burn approximately 130 calories. Subtract these calories from 1000 to determine how many calories you need to cut out of your diet that day.
4. Consider using an online diet tracker. These websites or apps allow you to enter your daily food intake and exercise so that you can be sure that you are staying on track with your goals.
Although tracking your calories may seem like a tedious process, before long it will become second nature. In the end, it will allow you to lose weight quickly in a way that is safe and doesn’t put your health at risk.