Maintaining Weight Loss
Benefits of maintaining weight loss
Losing weight is difficult for many people, but it's even more challenging to keep
the weight off. Many people who lose a large amount of weight have problems keeping
it off over time. One theory about regaining lost weight is that people who eat fewer
calories to diet also have a drop in the rate their body burns calories. This makes
it harder to lose weight over a period of months. A lower rate of burning calories
may also makes it easier to regain weight after going back to a more normal diet.
For these reasons, you shouldn't follow a very-low-calorie diet or try for quick weight
It's best to shoot for losing no more than 1/2 pound to 2 pounds a week. You'll need
to add in long-term lifestyle changes to make it more likely that your weight loss
will be lasting.
Getting to a a healthy weight offers health benefits. These include lower cholesterol
and blood sugar levels, lower blood pressure, less stress on bones and joints, and
less work for your heart. It's vital to get to and stay at a healthy weight to get
the most health benefits over a lifetime.
Keeping extra weight off takes effort and commitment, just as losing weight does.
You can reach your weight-loss goal through a a combination of changes in diet, eating
habits, and exercise. In some cases, people turn to weight-loss (bariatric) surgery.
Medicines can also help you maintain your weight loss.
Tips for staying at your goal weight
You can use the same tips to stay at a healthy weight that you used to lose your extra
If you used a weight-loss program to lose weight, keep following it. According to
the National Weight Control Registry, more than half of people in the registry used
some type of program to reach their weight-loss goal.
Exercise is a key part of staying at a healthy weight. You can get results even with
moderate exercise such as walking or using stairs. Aim for activities that burn 1,500
to 2,000 calories per week. Adults should try to get at least 150 minutes of moderate
physical activity each week. Or 75 minutes of vigorous physical activity each week.
You can break up your exercise time into smaller amounts each day.
Exercise pays off. Among people in the National Weight Control Registry, 94% got more
exercise to help them reach their goal.
Add calories back in slowly. Once you have reached your weight-loss goal, you can
try eating a few more calories. Try adding about 200 calories of healthy, low-fat
food each day for one week to see if you continue to lose weight. If you do, continue
to add calories from healthy foods until you have the right balance of calories to
stay at your weight goal. It may take some time to do this. A nutritionist can help.
Keep using behavioral strategies for staying at a healthy weight. Be aware that stress
can make you want to eat more.. Also use exercise and physical activity, or meditation
to cope with stress instead of eating.
If you slip back into old habits, it doesn't mean you have failed. Instead, pay focus
on what your diet and on exercise to help you get back on track. Also try to figure
out what caused you to slip back and find other ways to cope.
Weight cycling is losing and regaining weight multiple times. Weight cycling is also
called "yo-yo dieting." This cycling may raise certain health risks. These include
heart disease, high blood pressure, gallbladder disease, and high cholesterol. The
best strategy is to reach and stay at a healthy weight through physical activity and
One myth about weight cycling is that a person who loses and regains weight will have
a harder time losing weight later compared with someone who has not gone through a
weight-loss cycle. Most studies show that weight cycling does not change how well
your body burns fuel. It also doesn't affect how well you can lose weight in the future.
Weight cycling also does not increase the amount of fat tissue in your body or affect
whether fat ends up around your stomach.
Talk with your healthcare provider if you have questions about weight loss.