Lose weight, not hope

The post-festive time of the year comes with a lot of difficulty and pressure to cope up with the diet and fitness routine. If you are struggling to shed the weight and constant work towards losing those extra inches is not giving any positive results, don't get disheartened; 'don't lose hope', because that's the first rule of following any fitness regime.

Nmami Agarwal, Founder & CEO, Nmami Life, feels that weight loss should be a healthy and a long term goal. There is no particular time or age for weight loss. If you feel or have noticed that you have gained weight, if you have high BMI or you find difficulty in breathing while walking a little or climbing up the stairs, or experience breathlessness generally, if you are advised so by a doctor, well then it's time to start off with weight loss.

But the question is how to set goals for the same? To which she answers, "Since weight loss is a very personal journey – it should be set in a way that you achieve the desired goal within a realistic time frame. Also, your goals should not discourage you even if you fail initially. Health or weight loss goals can help you work towards a healthier lifestyle."

"Keep the goals attainable, short term and realistic. Also, target to achieve your goals timely," she suggests.

Vidhya Ramasubramanium, Chief Nutritionist, Cloudnine Group of Hospitals, Bangalore feels that the most significant way to lose weight is to first understand and stop the gradual intake of white sugar in your diet. "The villainous word "sugar" can include an entire array of foods that could have high sugar content – inclusive of sweets, ice-creams, desserts such as cake, fudge, mousse etc. In case you are someone with a sweet tooth, it is always a good to mull over eating fresh fruit, dark chocolates or jaggery to get over your cravings for sweet. Honey is also another interesting sweetener with a lot of health benefits – one of which could be weight loss," she asserts.

Further suggesting the simple tricks to stay firm in the journey, she recommends starting the gradual reduction of calories and increasing the water intake.

Whereas, Nmami notes that to change the lifestyle, and attain the desired goals, one needs to be disciplined, track the progress, stick to commitment, enjoy the healthy meals, and also adjust goals as needed.

The experts also feel that being in the stressful life – desk jobs, preparing for competitive exams – it is important that one fights stress eating and cravings.

"You can combat your unhealthy cravings by adding various healthy snacks or fruits to your diet. You can easily prepare your snacks at home by adding whole grains and no sugar. Various snacks like energy bars, whole grain cookies, banana chips, mixed nuts, and fruits like berries, apples, oranges are a healthy way to satiate your hunger pangs," they suggest.

Apart from this, planning your meals on time with correct nutrition can also help in lowering down the cravings.

It's important to understand that stress eating can also lead to weight gain. Therefore, moving your body in some way produces mind-good endorphins that leads to healthy eating instead of overeating.

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