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Elements That Make Up an Effective Weight Loss Program

Elements That Make Up an Effective Weight Loss Program

Recent statistics show that one out of three people are trying to lose weight. People chose to lose weight for a wide variety of reasons. But the two most popular reasons are to look better and have more energy. Although these are good reasons to work on losing those extra pounds, I would still say that improving your health or maintaining it is the best and most important reason to lose weight.

If you’re looking for an effective weight loss program to help you reach your weight loss goals you’ll be interested in this article. There are many weight loss products and services out there, and you can easily get lost in the maze of choices and end up with a disappointing program. To help you in your search, I have listed four of the most important things to look for in a weight loss program:

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1. Well-structured exercise routines. Regular exercise is a crucial component of successful weight loss and perhaps the best predictor of weight maintenance. Exercise makes it possible to create a calorie deficit as well as use up excess calories that otherwise would be stored as fat. Therefore, no weight loss program will truly be beneficial without a well-structured exercise routine. The two most popular types of exercises for the purpose of weight loss are aerobic exercises and resistance exercises. Most fitness plans use a combination of these two types of exercises.

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2. Healthy food plans. It goes without saying that healthy eating is important if you are trying to lose weight, since your weight is largely determined by the number of calories that you take in each day minus what your body uses. If you are a typical 21st century individual, your diet is comprised of mostly of high-calorie, nutrient-deficient processed foods, and your physical activity is very minimal. This means that you’re loading yourself up with a lot of calories and use only very little, causing a steady weight gain. In order for a weight loss program to be effective, it will need to include a diet plan that helps you cut calories by promoting low-calorie, nutrient-rich foods, including whole grains, lean meats, low-fat dairy and plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables.

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3. Realistic and sustainable methods. There are a lot of programs out there that can help you lose weight; but a lot of them employ strategies that are very restrictive and would be impossible to maintain for the rest of your life. These restrictive approaches to weight loss may seem very promising, but most people who use them never really finish the whole program because of overwhelm and discouragement and many even gain weight back after quitting. It’s important that you look for a weight loss program that you know you can do for the rest of your life. As a basic rule, don’t choose a program that totally restricts you from eating certain types of food or requires you to do punishing, unrealistic workout regimens.

4. Safety. No one wants to achieve their ideal weight but end up with other health problems as a result. Rapid weight loss can lead to serious consequences that include malnutrition, formation of gallstones, fatigue, and a general feeling of ill-health. According to experts, losing 1 to 2 lbs. per week is a sensible and safe rate of weight loss. Additionally, programs that don’t require you to purchase any pills or supplements are generally safer compared to others that do. Real food is best.

Featured photo credit:  Girl trying dress in looking in mirror cheerful and happy via Shutterstock

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Last Updated on December 9, 2019

5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

Everyone experiences mental stress at one time or another. Maybe you’re starting a new career, job, or business, or you feel incredibly overwhelmed between work, parenting, and your love life (or a lack of it). It could even be that you simply feel that you have way too much to do and not enough time to do it,  plus, on top of everything, nothing seems to be going the way it should!

Yup, we all experience mental stress from time-to-time, and that’s okay as long as you have the tools, techniques and knowledge that allow you to fully relieve it once it comes.

Here are 5 tips for relieving mental stress when it comes so you can function at your best while feeling good (and doing well) in work, love, or life:

1. Get Rationally Optimistic

Mental stress starts with your perception of your experiences. For instance, most people get stressed out when they perceive their reality as “being wrong” in some way. Essentially, they have a set idea of how things “should be” at any given moment, and when reality ends up being different (not even necessarily bad), they get stressed.

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This process is simply a result of perception and can be easily “fixed” by recognizing that although life might not always be going as YOU think it should, it’s still going as it should—for your own benefit.

In fact, once you fully recognize that everything in your life ultimately happens for your own growth, progress, and development—so you can achieve your goals and dreams—your perception works in your favor. You soon process and respond to your experience of life differently, for your advantage. That’s the essence of becoming “rationally optimistic.”

The result: no more mental stress.

2. Unplug

Just like you might need to unplug your computer when it starts acting all crazy, you should also “unplug” your mind.

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How on earth do you unplug your mind? Simple: just meditate.

It isn’t nearly difficult or complicated as some people think, so, if you don’t already meditate, give it a try. Whether you meditate for 5 minutes, 30 minutes, or 2 hours, this is a surefire way to reduce mental stress.

Meditation has been scientifically proven to relax your body (resulting in less mental stress), while also reducing anxiety and high blood pressure.

3. Easy on the Caffeine

Yes, we know, we know—everyone loves a nice java buzz, and that’s okay, but there’s a fine line between a small caffeine pick-me-up and a racing heart and mind that throws you into a frenzy of mental stress.

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Try giving up caffeine for a while and see how you feel. And, if that’s completely out of the question for you, at least try to minimize it. You might find that lots of your mental stress mysteriously “disappears” as your caffeine intake goes down.

4. Attack Mental Stress Via the Back Door

That’s right: your body and mind are part of the whole being, and are constantly influencing and affecting each other. If you’re experiencing a lot of mental stress, try to reduce it by calming your body down—a calm body equals a calmer mind.

How do you calm your body down and reduce physical stress? A  great way to reduce physical stress (thereby reducing mental stress) is to take natural supplements that are proven to reduce stress and anxiety while lifting your mood. Three good ones to look into are kava-kava, St John’s wort, and rhodiola rosea:

  • Kava-kava is a natural plant known to have mild sedative properties, and you should be able to find it at your natural health food store or vitamin store. It’s available in capsules or liquid extract form.
  • St John’s wort is a natural flower used to treat depression. Again, it’s found at your local health store in capsules or liquid. Because it uplifts mood (enabling you to see the brighter side of all experiences) it helps relieve mental stress as well.
  • Rhodiola rosea is a natural plant shown to reduce stress and uplift mood, and Russian athletes have been using it forever. Like the other two supplements mentioned, rhodiola rosea can be found at your natural health store in capsule or liquid form.

While these supplements are all natural and can be very helpful for most people, always check with your health care provider first as they can cause side-effects depending on your current health situation etc.

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5. Good Old-Fashioned Exercise

This tip has been around forever because it works. Nothing relieves mental stress like running, kickboxing—you name it. Anything super-physical will wipe out most of your mental stresses once the exercise endorphins (happy chemicals) are released into your brain.

The result: mental stress will be gone!

So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed or just plain stressed, try using some of the above tips. You can even print this out or save it to refer to regularly.

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