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Diet Questions?
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Louise_WebMD_Staff posted:
Do you have a question about how to lose weight? Then this may not be the board for you unless you want to know how to add exercise to your weight loss program.

Elaine Magee can help you understand good nutrition on the Food and Cooking Community

Dr Pam Peeke can help you shed weight on Diet Community with Dr Pam Peeke

Turn to our WebMD Diet Clubs for support

Some other resources:

Diet Health Check which is a personalized diet assessment that helps identify weight loss pitfalls and recommends short-term attainable goals.

BMI Plus Calculator to find your caloric needs to meet your goal

Food and Fitness Planner can help you plan your food and exercise to meet your goals

You can find evaluations of a large range of diets on our Diets A to Z page.
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MrsDebbieG responded:
When I am entering my Food and Fitness Planner WebMD suggests I should consume 1200 calories a day. Do I get to add calories to that goal according to how much I work out? For example if I burn 250 calories walking do I get to consume 1450 calories per day? What if I work out in an intense Cardio Kick Box class and burn 500 calories? How many calories do I consume per day? Thanks, MrsDebbieG
 
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Louise_WebMD_Staff responded:
It depends. Did you say you were sedentary when you filled it out? If so, then you could add those in. However, if you are losing 1-2 lbs a week without adding in the extra calories, then that exercise has already been accounted for in your calorie prescription.
 
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3Queens responded:
How can HCG help with weight loss and what are the side effects? Will the use of this hormone increase your chances of becoming pregnant.
 
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Louise_WebMD_Staff responded:
Here is an article on HCG Diets that can help you learn more. A notable quote is "Scientific studies have demonstrated that hCG injections do not cause weight loss, and regulatory actions by the Federal Trade Commission and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have curbed their use in the United States," says Quack Watch.org owner and director Stephen Barrett, MD.

I encourage you to join one of our Diet Clubs. You can use any plan you want while getting support from our other members.
 
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danni_michelle_2004 responded:
I am 20 years old almost 21 and i am at leaste 100 pounds overweight. i have ballooned up over the corese of 4 four years, every since i met the love of my life. i just reciently joined a gym. I smoke and lose my breath often. I try to work out for atleast an hour but i dont know if i am doing what i need to to take the stomach weight off.i dont know how do diet correctly either. If anyone had any advice for things to help please let me know
 
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No1UKnowHere responded:
If you are a hundred pounds overweight, just about anything you do will help.

First - stop smoking.

Second - stop smoking.

Third - stop smoking...

Sorry if I sound like a broken record, but I watched my dad die of SCLC in 2003 and I don't wish that on anyone. Plus, if you don't stop you won't be able to exercise properly and lose weight.

Have you seen a doctor? If you're 100 pounds overweight that should be your first stop. Make sure you're healthy enough for exercise.

After that, you need to diet - but don't just cut your calories to nothing or you'll fail without question. You're body will go into starvation mode and you'll keep the weight you have and maybe even gain more.

You need to change your lifestyle, but keep your caloric intake up.

I don't know your weight or bodyfat percentage, but I'll guess at 225 pounds and definitely greater than fifteen percent.

At that weight/percentage, you should be eating roughly 3500 calories per day over the course of seven meals.

First things first - NO SUGAR and no empty starchy carbs.

Breakfast would look like this:

6 egg whites 2 whole eggs 2 oz grilled chicken 2 2/3 cup steamed spinach 2 tbsp peanut butter or 18 almonds or 3 oz avacado 6.5 oz peeled ruby red grapefruit

That's about 49 grams of protein, 30 grams of carbs, and 25 grams of fat.

The rest of your meals should follow those ratios, but taper the amount of carbs down to about 15 grams for the last two meals. Concentrate on lean meats like turkey, chicken, pork, fish, lean ground beef, sirloin...etc Carbs should be good, low-gi stuff like green beans, baked sweet potato..etc. Fat should be "good" fat from almonds, cashews, natural (no sugar) peanut butter, Enova...etc. And drop processed foods like teevee dinners and such for raw stuff you cook yourself at home. I prep a few days food in advance all the time.

When you plateau - meaning you reach a point where you don't appear to be losing any more fat (and you will), simply cut your carbs back by a couple of grams per meal. Fat loss will pick up again. Keep repeating, and you can drop a couple of grams of fat here and there, but don't cut protein until you've dropped at least fifty pounds or so. You need to keep your muscle on your bones - Trust me. Once you've dropped fifty pounds you can re-work your diet to reduce overall calories and keep going.

Once or twice a week, treat yourself to a couple of slices of pizza and a can of coke - It will make you feel better and it'll keep your body guessing - which is where you want it. Notice, however, that I didn't say half a large pizza and a 32 ounce big gulp. Keep it real.

For exercise, do whatever you can do to keep your heart rate above 120 for as long as you can - every day. Over time, stretch it out to at least thirty minutes and then cut the time back to fifteen minutes, but increase your pace and raise your heart rate. Over time, stretch that pace and heart rate out to thirty minutes, and repeat - raising your pace and heart rate each time.

If you have high blood pressure like I did, tell them you don't want to take a beta blocker - It controls your heart rate and you'll never get it high enough. And if you do, you'll likely pass out from over-exertion. I take Lisinopril and it works perfectly.

Once you've dropped fifty or sixty pounds, you can start lifting weights to burn more fat but you should walk before you fly.
 
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No1UKnowHere responded:
I just realized I forgot the most important thing - WATER

Drink at least a gallon a day - If you're anything like me, when you get started you'll pee every fhirty minutes, but that will stop after a week or so when your body gets used to it.

Also, stay off the scale. Hit it once a week just to track progress. Your weight will fluctuate wildly every day for lots of reasons and if you keep hitting the scale you may confuse yourself or lose faith.
 
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unknown responded:
I agree.... stop smoking, stop smoking, stop smoking. It will be the absolute best thing you can do for yourself, resulting in more capability to do the exercise you will need to maintain any weight loss.

We have a great Smoking Cessation board, and for your weight loss efforts, I encourage you to post on our Dieting Clubs: 100+ Lbs. board.

Good for you for taking steps to turn your life around!
 
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straightscoop responded:
No1UK, I don't know where you get your information, but a lot of it is just plain wrong. 15% body fat for a female would be considered very athletic, almost at an elite level. There is no way someone 100 pounds overweight would have bodyfat anywhere near that level, usually it's double or triple that amount, unless they are a longtime bodybuilder and loaded with muscle. The recommended level for a female is 20-25%, and that's a female of average weight, not overweight.

Also, 3,500 calories is what it takes to GAIN a pound of fat. I would gain weight rapidly at that level, and I work out over an hour a day, 6 days a week! (I'm female and 5ft4) I don't think I've ever consumed that many calories in a day in my whole life. The average recommended maintenance calorie level for a female (by USDA pyramid standards) is 2,000. Again, that's average, and not considered a weight-loss diet. For many females who are not exercising heavily, or who are menopausal, it would be much lower. To lose weight, the bottom line is that you have to create a caloric deficit. Most diets recommend the range of 1,200 - 1,600 calories per day for a female. I'm not saying you have to starve yourself to lose, but you have to burn off more calories than you are taking in. It would be extremely difficult for a person to burn off 3,500 calories through exercise alone in a week, unless they were running a marathon. An hour on a treadmill walking burns about 250, to give you an example. Eating one granola bar that's 250 calories takes seconds.

The bottom line to losing weight is eating less calories, and moving more. As far as what those calories SHOULD be made of, I think most dieticians would agree processed foods, sodas, junk foods, simple carbs like white bread, white rice, sugar etc, should be avoiding while dieting, or only occasional choices. The bulk of diet should be healthy, nutritious foods like vegetables, fruits, lean proteins, whole grains low-fat dairy, and a little healthy fat like olive oil, avacado, flax seed, canola oil and nuts.

You can make small changes and will get there--for example, drink diet soda instead of regular, then gradually switch to water. Choose low-fat and low-calorie salad dressings, yogurt, milk, etc. instead of regular versions. Read labels carefully, and add up all the calories you are eating each day. See what you can cut back, and fill up on low-calorie foods first. (Choose plain popcorn over chips, fruit over candy bars, etc). And just do what you can in terms of exercise. The more you do it the easier it will get. Start with walks if that's all you can do, and keep walking father and faster.
 
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Shadowcatcher6 responded:
I think you've gotten some good advice, but I'm going to offer a slightly different perspective than some of what you've just been told. Hopefully this won't just confuse the issue.

Basically, losing weight is simple. You burn more calories than you eat. You don't mention diet in your post, but that really is the most important part because you can put back all the calories you burn off in an hour with a couple minutes worth of eating.

The diet suggested in your first response sounds fine to me, but I think 3500 calories is too many. I agree that you don't want to starve yourself, that's never good. But I'm a 200 pound man and I would definitely gain weight on 3500 calories a day. I agree with Straighscoop that 2,000 is probably a reasonable goal. My personal belief is that you should not be too strict with yourself in terms of exactly what you eat- you have to make this a permanent change if you want to stay thin, and few people are willing to eat exact formulas forever.

There is no evidence that drinking a gallon of water a day will help you lose weight. I know that it was a big fad a while ago, but it is not actually supported by science, or really by logic. Water doesn't burn fat. Yes, water is important, but our bodies have been finely tuned by millions of years of evolution to tell us when they need water. If you just drink when you're thirsty, that's all the water you really need.

You mention stomach weight specifically, so you should know that you can't target fat loss to certain areas of your body. You just burn extra calories, your body decides where to get the fat from.

There's nothing wrong with counting carbs and keeping track of how long your heart rate is high and so on, but the simple equation that is both necessary and suffecient for weightloss is that if you burn more calories than you eat, you lose weight, and if you eat more calories than you burn, you gain weight.

Good luck!
 
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redwingfan responded:
Losing weight is really quite simple. Reduce the calories your taking in and get some exercise. I lost 80 pounds following those two simple rules. Oh and one more thing, no fast food, I don't touch that stuff anymore! Truly, in the first few weeks the weight literally fell off. Soon after I started walking three or four days a week, then I joined a gym and started strength training, more weight gone. Then almost 4 years ago I picked up running and dropped another 20 or so pounds. I am an ex-couch potato, ex-smoker who is going to run her first 25K in May and ran a 12 miler last weekend - it can be done So start making small changes in your diet and maybe walk a day or two a week, I bet you see weightloss right away. The more weight you see falling off, the more determined you will become to lose more, that's how it worked for me!
 
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No1UKnowHere responded:
The diet I outlined for the woman above will work if she follows it but she *has* to do the cardio every day for five days a week and eventually she'll need to add some lifting in to keep muscle mass. If she follows it, there's no reason why she shouldn't be able to lose most of her excess bodyfat in a year. That's around 2 pounds a week and that's a pretty healthy number.

And the calories you burn while doing cardio are actually the smallest part of calories you burn each day - Your body burns calories for energy just to exist. The key to healthy FAT LOSS (note I didn't specifically say WEIGHT LOSS) is to make your body use the excess fat it already has for that energy and to make it require MORE energy just to exist. You do this by feeding yourself six or seven smaller meals a day, concentrating on lean proteins and good fat with very few carbs and by doing some sort of strenuous exercise for about an hour a day. That makes your engine run hotter and longer.

As I told her, at her weight, if she cuts calories down to 1500 or even 2000, she'll never succeed because her body will turn on her. She's heavy enough to start between 3000 and 3500, but cut sugar and simple carbs completely. If she does this, and does the cardio, she'll start losing fat because her body will require more energy just to exist and with nowhere to go for that energy, it will use bodyfat. Once she's lost fifty pounds she should cut her overall calories back, but not before.

And someone else mentioned water not helping with weight loss - The water doesn't cause you or help you to lose weight. The water helps your kidneys process the protein your taking in because most people don't take in that much protein every day. I drink a gallon of liquids - unsweet tea, diet soda, and water - every day.
 
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R_Weil responded:
To lose weight you must consume fewer calories than you burn no matter how much exercise you do. Even if you run a marathon every day you will not lose weight if you consume more calories than you burn. So if you?re not losing then you are consuming more calories than you burn even if you think you?re consuming few enough to lose weight. In fact, research shows that people can under estimate their calorie intake by as much as 40% to 50%. I suggest that you continue with exercise and check out the WebMD Weight Loss Clinic www.webmd.com/diet/weight-loss-clinic-what-it-is . Weight loss is hard on your own and support and professional guidance can be very helpful. The WebMD Clinic is an excellent program, inexpensive, you will get lots of support and professional advice, and you will lose weight if you follow it. You can also post your diet-related questions to these boards: http://boards.webmd.com/webx?50@@.5983fdc8 www.webmd.com/health_and_wellness/diet_and_nutrition.htm Of course, smoking cessation would be helpful too, although you may not be able to do all of it at once. You can speak with your doctor about the nicotine patch and the anti-depressant welbutrin, since research shows this combination is best for smoking cessation and reducing weight gain when you quit. But again, it may enough right now to work on weight loss. Take care, Rich


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