Dear Dr. Levister: Is it possible to lose weight with minimal effort or without feeling hungry? The diet industry has tried to make it sound like you can tweak your lifestyle and – voilà – you’re thin. A.G.
Dear A.G.: Well, guess what? You can’t. If you want to lose weight, you have to eat fewer calories. Just 25 percent of people who have lost weight are successful at keeping it off for five years or more. Simply put, weight loss takes time, knowledge, discipline and personal commitment.
There are 34.9% of American adults who are obese and 68.5% are obese or overweight. If you listen to the weight loss industry, you’ve been told over and over how easy it is to lose weight, just take this pill, follow that diet or buy this piece of equipment and everything will melt away in a flash. In fact, we spend over billions of dollars each year on weight loss products and services and yet we’re still overweight.
If you struggle with weight loss, as most of us do, you’ve figured out just how hard it is to lose weight. The question is, why is it so hard and is there anything you can do about it? There’s no shortcut to weight loss, but you can make the process easier with a few simple changes.
There are a number of factors that contribute to our weight gain that you already know. But it’s not just about finding time to exercise or choosing the salad over the burger–it’s about genuine commitment to make healthy decisions every day….regardless of what’s happening in your life. If you’re not ready to make some changes, losing weight will be hard.
If you don’t work out consistently enough, it’s hard to lose weight. Yes, it’s possible to lose weight through diet alone, but you’ll likely hit a plateau. You don’t need to spend hours in the gym; you only need to set up a reasonable workout schedule that you can follow each week.
For permanent weight loss, you need to pay attention to what you eat and make good choices more often than not. Maybe a structured diet eventually ends, but healthy eating never stops…there will never be a time when you’re done eating healthy. You need to be willing to replace unhealthy foods with healthier choices most of the time.