How to Cut Calories for Weight Loss
If you want to lose weight you have to be in calorie deficit. And the obvious way to achieve deficit is to cut calories. This means that you should reduce your calorie intake to lose weight, so that you are burning off more calories at the end of each day than you consume through your food. You have to eat the right foods, too. You can’t simple eat 1500 calories of your favourite fatty food and expect to lose weight. You have to eat the foods that mobilize your fat, and that don’t force your body to store fat. But what are the easy ways to cut calories?
The easiest calories to cut from your diet
You might not like it, but if you want to lose weight you will have to cut out the junk food calories, or at least save them for the occasional treat. This means cut out the chocolate, cake, sweets, fizzy drinks, and similar types of foods. Junk foods are loaded with calories, and if you don’t burn them off they will be converted and stored as fat. If you are overweight and holder a few extra pounds, then this is what has happened to you. Over time you have consumed more calories than your body requires, and this excess has been converted to fat. Next you want reduce, not eliminate, your starchy foods. These are foods such as bread, pizza, pasta, and rice. These are good sources of carbohydrate, so you can still eat them to fuel your body, but they tend to be high in calories, so make sure you limit your intake.
Calorie intake to lose weight
Now you know what to eliminate, how much should you eat? For women, the average daily calorie consumption is 2000 calories. And for men it is 2500 calories. If you eat more than these average requirements then you are going to gain weight, as the excess calories will be converted to fat, as mentioned above. But if you cut calories so that you consume less than these average daily requirements then you will lose weight. This is because your body will have to eat in to your fat stores to make up the difference. In 1 pound of human fat there are 3500 calories. So this means a total calorie deficit of 3500 calories will burn off a pound of your fat. Spread this over a week and a daily calorie deficit of 500 calories will help you lose 1 pound per week, every week! I will reiterate this. If you cut calories so you have a daily calorie deficit of 500 calories (so women eat an average of 1500 calories, and men 2000 calories) then you will lose around 1 pound per week.
Other ways to increase calorie deficit
Cutting calories is only one way to increase calorie deficit. There are two other methods at your disposal. The greater your deficit the quicker you will lose weight, so if you want to lose weight fast then a mixture of the methods mentioned so fat should be used. Simply being more active is the next method. Just move around more. It sounds silly, but it has been researched a lot and even has a geeky name: NEAT, or non-exercise activity thermogenesis. It basically means that if you are moving around as opposed to sitting down you can burn up to 3 times the calories without specifically exercising! Think about it. How many hours a week or month do you spend on the phone? Instead of sitting during these calls, get up and move around the room. Or jump off the bus a stop or two earlier on your way to and from work. And take the stairs at work instead of the elevator. And walk to your local shops rather than drive. It really is that simple! And the final one is good old fashioned exercise. Remember, the greater you calorie deficit the quicker your weight loss. And doing the right kind of exercise can burn hundreds of extra calories every session. If you can build up to this, the fat will simply fall off. Combine all the methods above and you will reach your ideal weight, whether you want to lose a stone or more, before you know it!
First determine how much weight you need to lose
Sure, you know you need to lose weight, but it is handy to know from the start how much weight you need to lose. This way you can break your target down into manageable chunks. Set yourself a serious of milestones. If you need to lose a stone, break this down into smaller 3 or 4 pound targets. It’ll help you keep focused. You can use the BMI Calculator to help you determine if you are overweight, and if so by how much. It has a few limitations, but it is a helpful gauge to put you on the right track.