Editor’s note: The following article is sponsored content from Methodist Health System.
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Weight loss is hard. After working so diligently to lose the pounds on a restrictive diet, the majority of people gain them right back and often gain more than they lost. What kind of diet guarantees weight loss for life?
“The key to losing weight and keeping it off is best achieved by changing your lifestyle,” said Brenda Herrod, board-certified nurse practitioner in women’s health at Methodist. “Healthy habits don’t require you to throw everything out of your refrigerator and force you to spend a lot of money on a special shake or only eat certain foods approved on the diet.”
Most diet companies are focused on financial gain. They know people are desperate to lose weight and will pay almost any amount of money to lose weight fast. While quick weight-loss plans or pharmaceuticals may work fast, you are almost sure to gain it back when you return to normal living.
“The best long-term results take effort, discipline, sacrifice and plain old hard work,” Herrod said. “You need a plan that will lead you to optimal health, the physique you have always dreamed of, and something you can live with the rest of your life.”
Herrod says it takes 21 days to form a habit and offers these six tips for making lifestyle changes resulting in a healthier life.
» Evaluate your “Why.” Remind yourself frequently why you are doing this. Only you can do it for yourself, so you must take initiative.
» Change your mindset. Be positive and 100 percent optimistic you can do it. Believe in yourself. Want it more than anything in the world.
» Set short- and long-term goals and a have a plan to achieve them. Break it down into details, such as, “I will exercise for 30 minutes five times a week.” Start with smaller goals, and make them specific, measurable and realistic.
» Join a supportive network of people with the same goals. The synergy created between those with similar goals can be incredible. They will help keep you inspired and on track. By encouraging and energizing others, you will build more momentum within yourself, too.
» Take care of yourself and deal with the stress in your life. Get adequate sleep and relaxation. Lack of sleep is linked to obesity and many other health problems.
» Be proud of your progress every step of the way. By reaching your goals through lifestyle changes, you will feel empowered, gain confidence, and realize you can do anything you put your mind to. The longer you live this lifestyle, the better results and more benefits you will enjoy.
“To be successful you must allow yourself time, stay committed and be positive you will achieve your goals,” she said. “It’s OK to have days when you lose your focus. Be good to yourself and realize that one bad day does not make you a failure. You can start over the next day with a renewed focus.”
Enjoy the process. Making a life change allows you to grow and learn the most about yourself. It’s also the best way to ensure a healthy, happy and fit life.