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Nobody Wants to Do It - But Most of at Least Think About it!

Updated on July 21, 2015

Nobody Wants to Do It - But Most of at Least Think About it!

You've heard the adage, 'Work is a 4-letter word!' There is another foul 4-letter word - nastier than the worst of the worst. It may shock you, but women are even guiltier of using this word than men. In fact, females are notorious repeat offenders.

(c) Copyright Kathy Steinemann

Curious? Here it is: D-I-E-T. Yes, I hate the 'diet' word, too - which is why I'm writing this article.

Something occurred to me while I was watching yet another rerun on TV. It requires a reduction of 3500 calories to lose one pound. So, how many calories would a person have to cut every day to lose one pound per year? The math is simple: 3500 divided by 365 equals about 10 calories per day. Ten calories! That's not much!

Yes, So What?

Here is where it gets interesting. If you can cut 10 calories from your daily food consumption, you will lose one pound over the coming year. Hey - I put ten times that number of calories on a piece of buttered toast! If I could do without one piece of toast a day, I would eliminate about 100 calories of butter. Add the actual calorie count of the bread (100 calories for the brand I like), and I cut a total of 200 calories. By eliminating just this one thing, I could lose 20 pounds over the next year without really dieting!

See how easy it can be? The key point is that you must be willing to accept a slow, sustained weight loss. You probably didn't gain the weight all in one month - so why would you expect to lose it in one month? Slow weight loss that doesn't change your lifestyle too drastically is easier to manage, and is kinder to your heart.

By the way, be sure to check the link at the end of this article for a longer version with even more tips - and links to websites with calorie-counters and food nutrition data.

Some Realistic Examples

Do you pick up a coffee on your way to work every morning? How many sugar packets and creamers do you use? Cut out one creamer and one sugar packet for a net saving of 45 calories, or 4 1/2 pounds per year of weight loss.

If you drink 2 cups of whole milk daily and switch to 1% instead, you will save 80 calories per day, or 8 pounds per year.

If you grab a chocolate bar on your way home from work, start reading labels. You may be able to change to a different brand and cut 50 calories or more - for a loss of 5+ pounds per year.

Order a McDonalds Big Mac without the cheese and save 70 calories.

Turn yourself into an avid label reader. Know which brands and restaurant meals will save you a few calories. Remember - the saving doesn't have to be huge. The idea is to make small changes without feeling deprived or cheated. Once you start looking at your eating patterns, you may be amazed at how many naughty habits you have acquired - resulting in all that excess padding on your body.

Add Some Spice to Your Life

Scientific studies show that spicy foods such as chili and cayenne pepper boost the metabolism for as many as 3 hours after ingestion.

Let's Review the Math

10 calories per day x 365 days per year = 1 pound of weight loss

  • Be a label-conscious consumer.
  • Check the Internet for restaurant menus with calorie counts.
  • Pick up a pocket-sized calorie counter.
  • Try spicy foods whenever possible.

Rome Wasn't Built in a Day

  • Take it slow and don't make dramatic lifestyle changes that you won't be able to maintain.
  • Don't deprive yourself of all the goodies and desserts you like - just go for modified versions or smaller portions.
  • Consult your physician if you need to lose a large amount of weight or if you have any medical concerns that must be addressed.

You can do it! Live the healthy life you want and deserve.

(c) Copyright Kathy Steinemann.

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