General Diet & Weight Loss Programs
If you want to lose weight there are tons of different programs to choose from. Some programs involve weight loss diets or diet supplements, other programs involve weight loss surgery, while some programs involve weight loss products like patches, body-toning machines, and so on.
General Weight Loss Programs – Beware Scams!
Before buying a weight loss program in a bookstore or via the Internet, be aware that the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has estimated that up to 40 percent of weight loss advertisements for diet supplements, fad diets, and other weight-loss products make fraudulent claims. As a general guide when searching for a suitable weight loss plan, avoid the following:
Diet or weight loss programs offer a quick fix.
Claims of weight loss that sound “too good to be true.”
Dramatic statements about foods or weight loss supplements are unsupported by evidence.
Claims are based on statements of a few individual dieters.
Any diet or weight loss program which bans a particular food group (e.g. carbs).
Diet & Weight Loss Programs – Created by a Professional
To ensure you receive healthy weight loss advice, either choose a diet program written by a qualified dietitian or nutritionist or – best of all – consult a professional in person and get a weight loss program tailored for your specific weight and dietary needs.
A personalized weight loss program designed by a dietitian usually has three elements.
Health, Weight & Diet Evaluation
First, a health and dietary evaluation session during which your health (inc. blood pressure, cholesterol, glucose, hemoglobin levels, etc.) is checked, your weight and weight history is recorded and your eating and general diet habits are discussed. If you are suffering from obesity – body mass index 30+ – your dietitian or health care professional may also monitor your body fat percentage and fat distribution, as this is becoming an important weight-related risk factor. Your dietary preferences including food sensitivities, allergies, and cooking habits are also taken into account. Lastly, your calorie needs, exercise routine, and fitness capacity are recorded. All these weight-related factors are assessed before drawing up a suitable weight loss program.
Based on your health and diet needs, you will receive a personalized weight loss program comprising a balanced eating plan with practical food options to suit your lifestyle and budget, plus daily exercise recommendations. The best type of weight loss and diet programs are based on lifestyle and food choices, plus a realistic exercise program. They are not based on achieving fast weight loss results or dramatic fat loss. Furthermore, you should not be required to ‘boost’ your weight loss with supplements or buy expensive fitness equipment.
Programs Should Involve Follow Up
Your dietitian or health care professional should arrange for follow-up sessions as you work through your weight loss program. This is essential to modify your diet plan, where necessary, and provide extra weight loss motivation.