No dieter enjoys seeing the numbers of the scale move down slowly. However, it’s healthier when weight is lost at a slower rate. Instead of giving up, be encouraged.
Although most dieters are in a hurry to lose weight, it’s actually better to lose those pounds slowly rather than rapidly. According to Weight Watchers, losing two pounds per week or less is considered healthy. Here are a few advantages to losing weight at a slow pace.
Slower Weight Losses Last Longer
When a dieter loses weight too rapidly, chances are he (or she) won’t keep it off as long as if the weight came off at a slower rate. Why? That’s probably because metabolism slows down the faster the weight melts off. At first, the weight comes off fast, but then after the body adjusts to fewer calories, weight loss tends to slow down because metabolism also winds down. However, this is actually beneficial because weight won’t return as quickly when not dieting.
Losing Weight Slowly Teaches Dieters Good Eating Habits
Rather than considering your weight loss program a diet, think of it as a change of lifetime eating habits. Too many dieters determine to lose weight by a certain date, such as an upcoming wedding, school reunion, etc. Rather than adopting this mindset, just decide to change eating habits for a lifetime instead of a small chunk of time. This takes the pressure off trying to reach a particular goal by a certain date. In other words, don’t aim for a quick fix, but focus on developing healthier eating patterns.
- Make better food choices – For example, eat more protein than carbohydrates. Fill up on whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, as well as getting other daily food groups, rather than consuming empty calories containing no nutritional value. A well-balanced food plan is found in the Weight Watchers program.
- Eat three balanced meals daily – Never miss a meal, even if you don’t feel like eating. By skipping meals, dieters can actually sabotage weight loss rather than help it.
Encouragement When Weight Loss is Slow
Even though losing weight slowly may be healthier, dieters can still get discouraged. Instead of being tempted to give up, follow these suggestions:
- Take body measurements – Rather than fret those weeks when you’ve only lost .2 pounds or even worse, stayed the same, or gained some, take those body measurements. With a tape measure, record chest, waist, and hips measurements. Chances are, if you’ve been following your weight loss program, you have lost a few inches.
- Stay positive
- Buy or try on smaller-sized clothing
- Use a bathroom scale indicating .2-pound increments –
- Compare lost weight to objects – By comparing even a fractional weight loss with actual objects, you can receive a good idea of what you have lost. For example, if you’ve lost “only a pound,” stick a pound of butter around your stomach. Then, take stock of the overall weight loss. Ten pounds would equal a 10-pound bowling ball. Twenty to thirty pounds, a toddler. A fifty-pound weight loss is about the size of a five-year-old, and for a 50-70 pound weight loss, you’ve lost a large dog such as a boxer.
Losing Weight Slowly but Steadily
Several weeks of the scale not budging could be due to a weight loss plateau. If this is the case, it’s natural to be concerned, so make some adjustments to get the scale moving again, such as cutting more calories or enhancing your exercise routine. Just remember that weight loss at a slower rate is healthier whenever discouragement tries to force you to give up on your diet.