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Losing Weight Is Easy, But How Do You Keep It Off?

Aug 17, 2007
What? Did I say losing weight is easy? Yes, I did. It IS easy at first, it's keeping up with it that's the problem.

We all love the novelty and intrigue of trying something different and starting the next new "fad" diet plan is no exception. But unfortunately, the outcome for most of these plans is unsatisfactory. Once the novelty and excitement wear off we're usually right back to where we started.

Whether you like to eat low carb, low fat, or low calorie, no diet plan will help you keep off those pounds unless you change your eating habits for life. In fact, researchers say that most diet programs don't help when it comes to keeping off the weight. In most people studied regained weight after 6 months and were back to their old weight about a year after starting a diet plan.

The problem is that most diet plans are based on eating a certain type of food, or counting this and cutting out that and not on the way that real people eat in real life situations. In order for you to stick to an eating plan (or diet) that you can maintain for life, you need to pick one that you is compatible with the way you eat and live.

The criteria for a successful diet is simple - the key to losing weight and keeping it off is to make sure your everyday eating habits and energy intake are balanced to your energy expenditure.

The reason 95% of commercial diets eventually fail is because they violate this simple principle. They are designed for the "quick fix", not for normal everyday eating that can last a lifetime. Most commercial diets require additional time and effort to start and follow, and worse, attempt to deprive us of our favorite foods and stop us from eating at our favorite restaurants.

Here's why many diet plans fail (does this sound familier?)

- You start a new diet program. You go out and buy all the foods you need, prepare some meals in advanced and you're good to go. You're totally motivated with this new exciting program and you're losing weight and look great!

- Now your normally busy day is getting even busier. There are kids to take care of, bosses to satisfy, and of course there are always those new diet guidelines to learn and follow.

- Suddenly, your workload is increased and you have no extra time in the day for anything so you skip preparing some of the special diet meals and snacks.

- Now your stockpile of 'diet foods" is running low. You've got no time to go to the grocery store so you zip to the corner convenience store. Of course, none of the diet foods you need are to be found there so you stick some snacks into your basket (well, you have to eat something don't you?).

- Soon you find that you have no diet foods, you're back to eating just like you used to and your gaining back all that weight you lost.

The problem is that any diet that doesn't fit into your regular lifestyle probably won't work unless you make some huge changes in your life. Otehrwise, you will eventually find that the restrictions, regulations and requirements of your new diet are incompatible with your normal eating habits.

Now I'm not saying you shouldn't try a commercial diet - on the contrary, many of the diet sites have great long term menus and incorporate foods that normal people eat. They also have excellent tracking tools, forums and other helpful things that can help you stay on your eating plan. They thing is that you have to realize that this "diet" is for life and pick one that will allow you to enjoy life the way you want to, whether that be eating out a lot or conforming to the way you like to exercise.

So if you want to lose weight and keep it off, find a diet that is practical, nutritious and in-balance with your everyday energy requirements, whether it be low carb, low calorie, low fat or whatever you prefer. Do this, and you are guaranteed success!
About the Author
Lee Dobbins is the owner of Low Carb Resource where you can find more about low carb eating, the glycemic index and dieting.
Visit the dieting article archives for more dieting tips.
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