How to Lose 100 Pounds

How to Lose 100 Pounds

Losing weight is never easy, especially when you are facing a large goal. Learn how counting calories, exercise, and lifestyle changes can help you lose 100 pounds.

By Madeline Vann, MPH

Medically reviewed by Pat F. Bass III, MD, MPH

More on Weight Loss

Five Secret Weight Loss Tips

If you are trying to lose 100 pounds, beyond diet and exercise you may need to examine other areas of your life to understand how best to achieve weight loss.

People who have 100 pounds or more to lose know all about what they should be doing to lose weight, says Gail Curtis, assistant professor at Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, NC. In addition to nutrition and exercise, Curtis says it is important to consider stress, your sense of fulfillment, your work and home environment, and even people in your life who may be sabotaging your best diet efforts. Then you can concentrate on developing and sticking to a weight-loss plan.

How to Lose 100 Pounds: It Starts With Counting Calories

Counting calories is going to be a part of this process. Here are guidelines to follow:

If you want to lose a pound a week, you have to cut out 3,500 calories, or roughly 500 calories a day.
You never want to eat fewer than 1,200 calories a day, “and that’s on the low end,” says Curtis. You can always increase your physical activity, however.
You can safely aim to lose 1 percent of your body weight per week; a woman weighing 250 pounds should aim for a 2.5-pound loss per week, eating about 1,250 calories less per day.
Counting calories involves not just the food you eat, but also the calories you burn through exercise.
Keep a journal of what you ate, how much you exercised, and your thoughts and feelings at those times, and limit yourself to one weekly weigh-in to avoid focusing too much on the scale.
Good nutrition is key, says Curtis. Many people who want to lose 100 pounds are used to eating foods that are high in calories and low in nutrition. The challenge is to practice the reverse: Learn to eat the correct portions of foods that are low in calories but high in nutrition, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat dairy.

The Right Mentality to Lose Weight

How to Lose 100 Pounds: Break It Down Into Stages

How long it will take to lose 100 pounds varies — a 250-pound woman might need 40 weeks or more to achieve her goal — but Curtis recommends that you develop weekly and monthly goals that will help you track your progress and avoid becoming overwhelmed or discouraged. Attainable, feel-good goals include:

Being able to get down on the floor and play with your children or grandchildren
Being able to walk around the mall without feeling short of breath
Being able to do 20 minutes of physical activity three days a week — mornings are best, says Curtis (and work up to 30 minutes most days of the week)
Eating four servings of fruit or veggies every day of the week
Eating a healthy breakfast every day that includes a low-fat protein
How This Man Lost 100 Pounds

How to Lose 100 Pounds: Exercise Is Non-Negotiable

Being physically active is an essential part of losing 100 pounds. “This was the biggest challenge for our clients,” says Curtis. “They would say they couldn’t do it because of their ankle or their back pain. But everybody can do an exercise program.”

Curtis recommends:

If you have a lot of joint pain, start with chair or water-based exercises.
Try walking short distances and gradually building up your endurance.
Involve a physical trainer or an exercise buddy as you get moving again.
How to Lose 100 Pounds: The Aftermath

Many people worry about how their body will look once they lose 100 pounds. This “depends on your age and condition of the skin,” says Curtis. “Some people’s skin will retract. For some it will not.” Once you reach your goal, if you find that sagging skin bothers you, you might want to investigate cosmetic surgery to remove excess skin.

Of course, the health and fitness advantages of losing 100 pounds, plus how much better you will look and feel in clothes, will more than make up for any after-effects of your overweight. With determination and a few smart diet strategies, you can achieve your goal.

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Amazing Health Benefits of Berries

Get a Powerful Punch From a Petite Package

Berries are tiny, tasty, and tantalizingly colorful – and they’re also powerful allies for your health, protecting everything from your head to your heart.

Berries Help Manage Diabetes

Berries are sweet, but not the kind of sweet that should send people with diabetes running. “Because they come with fiber, they can use that in a diabetic diet as a serving of fruit,” Copperman says. In general, it’s better to eat fruit whole rather than drink juice, which is much higher in sugar and doesn’t contain fiber. And even though the health benefits of berries still count when they are included in another food, the nutrition boost is better when you choose fresh blueberries over a blueberry pie or a muffin.

Obesity Treatment

Obesity Treatment

The method of treatment depends on your level of obesity, overall health condition, and motivation to lose weight.

Treatment includes a combination of diet, exercise, behavior modification, and sometimes weightloss drugs. In some cases of severe obesity, gastrointestinal surgery may be recommended.

If you are overweight, losing as little as 7-10 percent of your body weight may improve many of the problems linked to being overweight, such as high blood pressure and diabetes.

Slow and steady weight loss of no more than 1-2 pounds per week is the safest way to lose weight. Too rapid weight loss can cause you to lose muscle rather than fat. It also increases your chances of developing other problems, such as gallstones and nutrient deficiencies. Making long-term changes in your eating and physical activity habits is the only way to lose weight and keep it off!

Whether you are trying to lose weight or maintain your weight, you must improve your eating habits. Eat a variety of foods, especially pasta, rice, wholemeal bread, and other whole-grain foods. Reduce your fat-intake. You should also eat lots of fruits and vegetables.

Making physical activity a part of your daily life is an important way to help control your weight. Try to do at least 30 minutes of physical activity a day on most days of the week. The activity does not have to be done all at once. It can be done in stages: 10 minutes here, 20 minutes there, providing it adds up to 30 minutes a day.

Overweight Treatment

Overweight Treatment

Your body weight is controlled by the number of calories you eat and the number of calories you use each day. So, if you consume fewer calories than you burn, you will lose weight. You can do this by becoming more physically active or by eating less.

You didn’t put on extra weight overnight so it is equally unrealistic to take it off quickly. Record a goal that you can reach in one month that is 4 to 8 pounds less than you weigh now. Set a goal you know you can achieve.

Here are some very simple changes that you can start today that will greatly improve your chances of weight loss success:

Eliminate Red Meat
If foods like burgers are basic to your current diet, cutting out red meat can go a long way in helping you make healthier meal choices. Build your meals around fish or poultry.

Cut out fried foods
Grill, bake, roast, broil or boil your food. This also means doing without French Fries and snack foods like Potato Strings, Chips,…

Start with a soup or a salad
By starting dinner with a soup or salad, you will curb your hunger, which will in turn help you keep portion sizes in check and prevent you from overeating.

Stop Cola consumption
For every 20 ounces of Coca-Cola you drink, you’re consuming 250 calories. If you’re trying to consume around 1500 calories a day in order to lose weight, you can blow your entire calorie budget on soda!

Drink water
Reach for the goal of eight glasses a day. Even if you don’t drink eight, you’re drinking more than usual.

How Safe Is Quick Weight Loss?

How Safe Is Quick Weight Loss?

You might want to drop extra weight as fast as possible, but the most long-lasting loss often comes at a slow, and safe, pace.

Tempted by the fad diet that promises 15 or even 30 pounds of weight loss in the first month? While it would be lovely if excess weight could safely melt away (ideally before bikini season), quick weight loss is unlikely, and prolonged extreme weight loss is not safe.

Weight Loss: Understanding That First Drop

“We usually recommend about a half a pound to two pounds a week, which is a lot less than what these fad diets promise,” says Emily Banes, RD, clinical dietitian at the Houston Northwest Medical Center.

Banes acknowledges that some people may experience quick weight loss in the early stages of a new diet, but says it is important to be realistic about what to expect over the long haul. “If you have a lot to lose and you start on a diet and lose more than two pounds a week, that’s not necessarily a bad thing, but know it’s going to slow down,” warns Banes, adding that some of the initial weight loss probably is water weight.

Even Banes’ patients who have had lap-band or gastric bypass surgery and lose weight dramatically at first will eventually slow down to what feels like a crawl, but is actually a healthy rate of weight loss. Banes says she would worry about a person’s rate of weight loss if they continued to lose five to 10 pounds (or more) a week.

Weight Loss: Safe Strategies, Best Strategies

While not everyone, including Banes, focuses on counting calories, doing the math can help guide you to a safer weight loss. Generally, experts recommend trimming 500 to 1,000 calories from your daily intake by eating less and exercising more.

A pound is the equivalent of 3,500 calories, so if you can cut 500 calories each day for a week, you should lose one pound. Researchers who analyzed data from 1,801 Minnesota dieters over a two-year period found that the more strategies dieters used, the more likely they were to be successful in losing weight at this pace. Strategies that lead to success include:

Counting calories
Increasing daily exercise (aim for 150 minutes a week or more)
Cutting out sweets and snacks
Reducing fat intake to less than 30 percent
Increasing fruit and vegetables
Decreasing portion sizes
The researchers noted that one crucial piece of information lacking from many diet strategies: persistence. Their conclusions support the fact that even though it will take a long time at the pound-per-week pace — longer than many people would like — with a slower approach you are more likely to develop the long-term healthy habits that will help keep the lost weight off.

Weight Loss: When the Rate Becomes Dangerous

If extreme weight loss means you are not getting enough nutrients — the fats, carbohydrates, and proteins needed for your body to function properly — you have entered the territory of unsafe weight loss. You may also be developing an eating disorder focused on your obsession with weight. Some of the warning signs that you may be losing too much weight are:

Thinning hair
Frequently becoming sick
Feeling cold more often than usual
Having fewer or no menstrual cycles
Disappointing though it may be, the reality is that slow and steady wins the weight-loss race. Take it easy and be patient — you will achieve your goal and, more importantly, maintain it.

Surprising Advice for Diabetes Prevention: Eat Cheese

Surprising Advice for Diabetes Prevention: Eat Cheese

Cheese lovers could be 12 percent less likely to develop type 2 diabetes, research finds. But that doesn’t necessarily mean you can eat cheese with abandon.

People with an elevated diabetes risk are often told to avoid high-fat foods, such as cheese, but a new study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition suggests that a diet rich in cheese might actually prevent the disease from developing.

The reason? Cheese’s particular brand of fat and fermentation process, researchers in the Netherlands concluded. A study of more than 300,000 people across eight European countries indicated that total dairy consumption was not associated with diabetes risk. But cheese and other fermented dairy products, such as yogurt and thick, fermented milk were inversely associated with type 2 diabetes.

Out of all the dairy products, cheese was found to lower risk the most. Researchers say that though results are promising, more research needs to be done to determine a link between fermented dairy and diabetes risk.

Fat and Your Diabetes-Prevention Diet

Because numerous studies have found high-fat diets to be associated with diabetes risk and inflammation in the body, which is linked to a host of other chronic diseases, this research does not give you a free pass to go cheese-crazy.

“Diabetes puts people at increased risk for heart disease, which is why it’s important to watch your fat intake,” says Dara Gurau, RD at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Center in Toronto. “Cheese and dairy products are higher in saturated fat, so it’s best to choose lower fat varieties of these foods such as skim milk, fat-free yogurt, low-fat cottage cheese, and hard cheeses with less than 16 percent milk fat.”

To cut your diabetes risk, Gurau also suggests avoiding the trans fats found in margarine, fried foods, and any foods that list hydrogenated oil as an ingredient. For healthy fat sources, add more olive and canola oils, nuts, seeds, avocados, and olives to your diet, Gurau suggests. She also recommends adding two to three servings of fatty fish, such as mackerol or salmon, to your diet per week. The omega-3 fatty acids found in such fish are essential for skin, heart, and brain health, and may also lessen diabetes risk.

TELL US: What’s your favorite way to eat cheese? Share it in the comments.

For more diabetes news, follow @diabetesfacts on Twitter from the editors of @EverydayHealth.