Weight Loss Without Exercise?
By Jeany Miller
From the Diary of a Fat Woman Blog Series
I’ve not had a good week in terms of weight management. I looked in the mirror a couple of times while I was shopping or out with a friend only to realize I have actually gained weight (at least it looks that way; I don’t own a scale, so it’s hard to say for sure). I am at my wit’s end with myself because I know this weight is going to be increasingly difficult to lose, and I’m not even attempting to shed so much as one pound. I just continue with my same old routine, day in and day out, telling myself I’ll start exercising/dieting/paying attention tomorrow – but tomorrow never comes.
One of my acquaintances recently lost 100 pounds by joining Weight Watchers. She told me in great seriousness that she never exercised once during this incredible journey – as all that she did was follow the Weight Watchers regimen to a tee. And, she continued, she doesn’t plan to ever exercise because she doesn’t enjoy it in any way, shape, or form. Instead, her goal is to continue watching what she eats to maintain her current weight.
Is this possible? Can a person actually lose 100 pounds and keep it off just by altering their eating habits?
Some doctors believe this method really works. Dr. Oz, for instance, insists that calories do count when trying to measure weight loss efforts, but those calories need to be healthy. Therefore, you need to avoid calories from trans fats – partially hydrogenated oils that are found in many baked goods and packaged foods – as well as calories from added sugars and syrups, saturated fats from four-legged animals, all skin on poultry, and palm and coconut oils. As he says, “Your food choices may be why a reduced-calorie diet isn’t working.”
There’s also the question of how many calories a person should eat each day, which depends on such factors as age, size, height, sex, lifestyle, and overall health. Recommended daily calorie intakes also vary across the world. According to the National Health Service (NHS), UK, the average male adult needs around 2,500 calories per day to keep his weight constant, while the average adult female needs 2,000. Meanwhile, U.S. authorities recommend 2,700 calories per day for men and 2,200 for women.
It’s interesting to note that, in the U.K., where people are typically taller than Americans, the recommended daily intake of calories is lower. Rates of overweight and obesity among adults and children in the U.S. are considerably higher than in the UK.
The NHS stresses that, rather than precisely counting calories, people should focus more on eating a healthy and well balanced diet, being physically active, and balancing how many calories are consumed with the numbers burned each day.
Is there a fool-proof way to lose weight? I know what most people would say: yes, simply eat right and exercise. But the problem is that not every regimen works for every person. Another often-heard phrase is “diet smart, not hard.” Under this plan, you eat the amount of food that feels right only if your diet is based on lean proteins and unsaturated fats – lots of veggies, fruit, and whole grains. Still others tell you not to worry about weight, but waist size. The ideal for women is 32-1/2 inches, and for men it’s 35.
When I find a weight loss method that works, I’ll let you know.