Losing Weight With Optifast

Optifast is a clinically supervised program for weight loss. According to the Optifast website, with this plan you use Optifast products for full or partial meal replacements. The Scottsdale Weight Loss Center reports that Optifast is an effective way to lose weight that is easy to follow. A meal replacement diet substitutes packaged foods for at least two meals a day. This lowers your calorie intake and allows you to lose weight. If you prefer to go on your own and avoid the clinic fees, Optifast does offer products online.

Close-up of a woman drinking a meal replacement shake. (Image: Central IT Alliance/iStock/Getty Images)

Step 1

Purchase the products you need to start the program. As of 2010, Optifast offers shakes, soups and bars. Plan on replacing two meals with Optifast products.

Step 2

Start a food journal to track exercise and daily calories. This will help monitor your calories each day to keep you on the right path for weight loss. Record all foods and exercise for each day.

Step 3

Drink one shake or eat a bar for breakfast. Shakes have 160 calories, according to the Optifast website. Make note of breakfast in your journal.

Step 4

Eat a small, healthy snack mid-morning. A snack should consist of a piece of fruit or handful of nuts. This will help to curb hunger.

Step 5

Prepare an Optifast product for lunch. This can be soup, a shake or snack bar. If necessary, supplement lunch with some vegetables or a salad with low-fat dressing.

Step 6

Add a mid-afternoon snack to your diet plan. Eat raw vegetables, such as cauliflower and low-calorie dip, or snack on fruit.

Step 7

Cook a regular, nutritional dinner. Stick to lean meats, such as fish or grilled chicken. Eat plenty of vegetables. Include high-fiber foods such as brown rice to help fill you up.

Step 8

Drink plenty of water throughout the day. Monitor your water intake in the journal to ensure you drink at least eight glasses.

Step 9

Calculate your total calorie intake each day. Slow weight loss is the best way to reach a proper weight. Talk to your doctor to determine the proper daily calories for you. As a rule, if you normally eat 2,000 calories a day, cut back to 1,500 to lose 1 or 2 lbs a week.

Step 10

Exercise six days a week. This includes three days of cardiovascular exercises, such as walking, and three days of strength training. Alternate the days. For example, walk on Monday, Wednesday and Friday and lift weight on the free days. Always take one day off to rest. Make note of all physical activity in your journal.

Tip

Optifast programs may be more effective if done in a clinical environment. Clinics that use Optifast will create a program suited to you and your weight loss needs. If you are obese, medical supervision will help you drop pounds and reach a healthy weight.

Warning

Talk to your doctor before beginning an Optifast diet. This will determine that you are healthy enough to lose weight and exercise. If your calorie count is too low, you are likely to regain the weight once you go off the Optifast plan. Try to reduce calories by only 500 per day.

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