I'm Overweight & I Want to Lose Weight

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A frustrated woman is sitting behind a scale. (Image: Highwaystarz-Photography/iStock/Getty Images)

The first step toward losing weight is acknowledging that you're overweight and making the decision to do something about it. Once you're committed to making a change, you need to make a plan and stick to it. Avoid fad diets or gimmicky weight-loss plans that promise quick results. Instead, adhere to the tried and tested method of eating healthy, exercising and controlling your calories.

Step 1

Calculate your body mass index by dividing your weight in pounds by the square of your height in inches -- your height multiplied by itself -- and multiply the result by a conversion factor of 703. For instance, if you weigh 230 pounds and are 7- inches tall, you would divide 190 by the square of 70 and multiply by 703 to get a BMI of 27.3. A BMI of 25 to 29.9 is considered overweight.

Step 2

Create a weight loss goal to reach the healthy BMI range of 18.5 to 24.9. For instance, if you are 70-inches tall your healthy weight would be anywhere between 129 and 173 pounds. A healthy rate of weight loss is 1 to 2 pounds per week.

Step 3

Add physical activity to your routine. The American College of Sports Medicine recommends getting at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity per week to lose weight, but notes that exceeding 250 weekly minutes will yield better results.

Step 4

Eat a diet that emphasizes fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy products and low-fat protein sources like lean meats and beans. Avoid saturated and trans fats and foods with added sugars.

Step 5

Create a calorie deficit of 500 to 1,000 calories per day to meet your weekly weight loss goal of 1 to 2 pounds. To create a calorie deficit you need to burn more calories through exercise and activities than you consume.

Tip

Don't skip meals in your effort to reduce calories. This will slow your metabolism and slow weight loss, too. Instead, reduce portion sizes.

Warning

Always consult a physician before beginning a weight loss program. Your doctor can determine if your weight loss goals are reasonable and help craft an exercise plan and diet that fits your specific needs.

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