How to make weight loss easier—and tastier
Losing weight can be very difficult. And if you do lose weight, keeping it off can be even more difficult.
On this page, I reveal three steps that can make losing weight, and keeping it off, much easier. It’s still going to be a challenge, but it’s going to be far less of a challenge, which means that your chances of succeeding will be significantly increased. First, let’s go over a few key points about weight loss.
1. The formula for losing weight is simple
Your body needs a certain number of calories (more accurately referred to as kilocalories) each day to fuel your bodily functions and physical activities. In order to lose weight, each day, all you have to do is consume fewer kilocalories than your body needs.
That’s it. That really is the gist of weight loss. As long as you eat fewer kilocalories than your body needs, you will lose weight—even if you only eat chocolate!
2. Not all kilocalories are equal
Even though you can eat nothing but chocolate and still lose weight, you obviously must never do such a thing. To promote optimal health, you must primarily consume nutrient-dense foods that provide your body with everything it needs for survival, growth, and repair. As you’ll learn below, this certainly does not mean that you have to struggle through boring meals every day.
3. Some foods make weight loss much more difficult
The foods that you eat can affect your metabolism. Some “healthy” foods can slow down your metabolism and make weight loss much more difficult. They can even encourage your body to store fat! Other foods can speed up your metabolism and encourage your body to burn fat. Knowing what foods to eat and what foods to avoid can therefore make losing weight much easier. More on this in Step two.
4. To keep the weight off, you must enjoy your new diet
Most people who lose weight through dieting put the weight back on again because they can’t sustain the new diet, usually because it’s tasteless, boring, and lacks diversity. In order to stick to a new diet, it must include a wide range of easy-to-prepare meals that excite you, keep you feeling full, and make you happy, in addition to providing you with everything you need for health and well-being.
5. To preserve your muscle mass when you diet, you must lift weights
When you diet and put your body into a state of caloric deficit, your body can burn your muscles for fuel if it thinks that they are not being used. Initially, it burns glycogen stores in your liver, before moving on to fat stores. However, it doesn’t like using up fat stores because fat is a rich source of energy and is also required for heat insulation, so the body soon turns to unused muscle mass.
Loss of muscle is not a bad thing only if you’re a guy but also if you’re a girl because muscle is what gives you your shape and curves. If you lose muscle and then put all of the fat back on again, your body will look less shapely and toned than it did before losing the muscle! The best way to avoid losing muscle mass when you diet is to lift weights, which will tell your body that your muscles are in use and important.
6. Rapid weight loss is not good for you
If you do manage to lose weight, it’s very important that you do not lose weight too quickly. The reason is that rapid weight loss increases your likelihood of losing muscle mass, even if you lift weights. What’s more, if you were significantly overweight, rapid weight loss could leave you with ugly, loose skin. In extreme cases, rapid weight loss can even damage your liver!
The three steps
Now that I’ve laid down those key points, I can reveal the three steps to successful and permanent weight loss. As you will notice, the three steps address the concerns raised in the key points.
Install the MyFitnessPal app on your phone. (If you don’t have a phone, you can use the MyFitnessPal website, which provides the same functionalities.) The app and website are free. Once you set up the app, it will tell you how many kilocalories you have to eat each day to lose weight. You’re going to add everything you eat and drink to the app, and it’s going to count your kilocalories for you. It’s also going to show you if you’re getting enough of the right macronutrients, vitamins, and minerals, which is useful if you want to be healthy. Adding your meals is easier than you think, and the process becomes increasingly easier the more you use the app. All you have to do is consume the number of kilocalories the app asks you to consume, and you will lose weight. It’s as simple as that. I explain below how to set up the app for successful weight loss.
Note that you will not have to count kilocalories for the rest of your life. After several months of using the app to count your kilocalories, you will learn portion sizes and portion control, after which you can stop counting kilocalories and use portion size estimates.
Download the Metabolic Cooking package. The package will make losing weight, and keeping it off, much easier, not to mention tastier. The package includes a cookbook that contains 250 genuinely tasty, nutrient-dense, and easy-to-prepare recipes (breakfasts, dinners, lunches, desserts, sides, snacks, and smoothies). The recipes are designed to boost your metabolism and encourage your body to burn fat. The package also includes various guides that will teach you everything you need to know about tasty fat-loss cooking, including what ingredients encourage your body to store fat and what ingredients help your body to burn fat. You will never again have to struggle through bland weight loss meals that bore you to tears. Instead, you’ll be able to enjoy tasty and exciting fat-burning meals that will make you happy, boost your energy levels, and keep you feeling full for longer. This in turn will increase your likelihood of sticking to your diet and keeping the weight off. Best of all, the whole package only costs $10.
Start weight training. Although this step isn’t necessary for losing weight and keeping it off, as explained above, it’s extremely important for preserving your muscle/shape as you lose weight. On this website, I’ve provided free, professionally designed training programs for both men and women. Take advantage of them.
Other ways to get active
In addition to training, there are lots of other ways in which you could increase your activity level, many of which can be quite enjoyable. For example, you could:
- go for a walk every night and listen to an audiobook
- cycle through parks or nature reserves
- join a swimming club
- start martial arts or yoga
- take up a sport, such as tennis, squash, or soccer
- take up a physical hobby, such as dancing or gardening
- go hiking or camping.
Other ways in which you could increase your activity level include the following.
- Use an exercise bike or strider as you watch TV.
- Work on foot by placing a platform on your desk.
- Sit on a stability ball instead of a chair at work.
- Stop taking the car everywhere you go.
- Get off the bus/train one stop early and walk the rest of the way.
- Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
- Go for a brisk walk during your lunch breaks.
How to set up MyFitnessPal for successful weight loss
Let’s now go over how to set up MyFitnessPal for successful and healthy weight loss. The process doesn’t actually need much explaining. Setting up MyFitnessPal is quite straightforward.
During the process of setting up your MyFitnessPal account, whether you do it on your phone or on the website, you’ll be asked for your personal details, goals, and activity level.
- Your personal details are your height, current weight, gender, and date of birth.
- Your goals are your weekly goal (how much weight you want to lose per week) and your goal weight (the weight you are ultimately aiming for).
- Your activity level is the amount of activity that you undertake in an average day, not including any exercises or physical activities outside of your job.
For your weekly goal, choose “Lose 1 lb per week”. I realize that this isn’t much, and you probably want to lose more; however, this is the recommended amount if you want to avoid losing weight too quickly. Remember, if you lose weight too quickly, you will also lose muscle and may even end up with ugly, loose skin! For the first couple of weeks, you’ll probably lose more than one pound per week anyway—especially if you’re significantly overweight. That’s fine. The amount you lose should soon settle down.
When you select your goal weight, be realistic, and start with a simple goal. That way, you’ll be much more likely to achieve it and feel encouraged. For example, if you currently weigh 210 pounds, make your goal weight 205 pounds, which is easily achievable. Once you achieve your first goal, you can change your goal weight to 200 pounds and start your second goal.
Once you enter all of the necessary information into MyFitnessPal, the app will calculate the number of kilocalories you have to eat each day to achieve your weekly goal. All you have to do is add to your diary the meals that you consume and the exercises and activities that you perform. The more exercises and physical activities you add, the more kilocalories you will be able to eat!
How to add your meals and exercises
I explain how to add your meals and exercises to MyFitnessPal in this blog post, where I talk about MyFitnessPal in more detail. Just remember that you have to add everything that you eat and drink (except water, which is optional). This includes alcoholic beverages, dressings, seasonings, and condiments, the kilocalories of which can really add up.
Increase the protein ratio to avoid losing muscle
After you have set up MyFitnessPal, you can adjust the ratio of macronutrients (carbohydrate, fat, and protein) that you have to eat in the Goals section of the app. The default ratio is 50% carbohydrate, 30% fat, and 20% protein.
To reduce your likelihood of losing too much muscle as you lose weight, increase the protein ratio to 30% or even 35%. The extra protein in your system will ensure that your body has enough protein to rebuild muscle tissues that are broken down for energy. Note, however, that if you truly want to preserve your muscle, you must lift weights.
After adjusting your protein ratio, you will also have to adjust the ratios of carbohydrate and fat to ensure that they collectively equal 100%. I leave you to decide what percentages to choose based on your preferences. Keep in mind that, as revealed in the 2015–2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, the USDA recommends the following daily ranges for men and women aged 19 and over:
- Carbohydrate: 45%–65% of kilocalories
- Fat: 20%–35% of kilocalories
- Protein: 10%–35% of kilocalories
Keep MyFitnessPal updated
In addition to adding your meals and exercises to MyFitnessPal, every couple of weeks, you also have to update your current weight to inform MyFitnessPal of your progress. The app will then recalculate your caloric needs and ensure that you keep losing weight. If you don’t update your current weight and keep consuming the same number of kilocalories per day, your weight loss will slow down and stop.
Note that whenever you edit your current weight, MyFitnessPal resets your custom settings, so you will have to re-adjust your macronutrient ratio settings if you changed them.
To summarize, the easiest way to lose weight, and keep it off, is to:
- Count your kilocalories using MyFitnessPal
- Eat fat-burning meals that boost your metabolism, keep you feeling full, taste great, and make you happy. To learn more, check out the Metabolic Cooking package.
You should also lift weights to preserve your muscle/shape as you lose weight by starting a training program.
I hope that this little guide helps you to lose weight and feel great. If it does, please contact me and let me know.