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I am currently cutting back and trying to lose some weight (as always), but this time I am sticking with it even if i have a bad day, but I am not sure how many calories I should be eating. I was talking to a friend who said if I am always hungry I am not eating enough. I thought I was eating around 1500 calories a day, but after food journaling I realized I was closer to 2400 daily calories. So I cut back my food intake and have added low-fat string cheese, apple sauce cups, fresh carrots, and grape tomatoes to my diet, and am trying to cut out the 100-calorie packs of snacks and only do fruits and veggies. I never thought I would say this, but yes I am hungry, but I don't want to eat and I don't want to starve at the same time. Am I cutting too many calories too quickly?
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Weight loss is a very complicated issue, but the equation for shedding pounds is simple. It comes down to two simple things: a) the energy you expend i.e. physical activity and b) the energy you take in i.e. what you eat. You lose weight by burning more calories than you take in. You can do this by either eating less, exercising more, or a combination of the two.
Losing a significant amount of weight, and keeping it off, is going to take more than counting calories. It is going to take a major change in the way you live. Recent studies suggest that the most efficient way to lose weight is to exercise at a moderate rate at least 5 days a week for 55 minutes each day. If you’re current level of activity is minimal, I recommend starting with walking about 30 minutes per day, and work your way to challenging your heart rate more as you get stronger. On the diet side of things, I would stop meticulously counting calories and start eating a reasonable well-balanced diet. This includes eliminating fast food, high-calorie beverages (most fruit juices), junk food, snack foods, and heavily processed foods. Instead of focusing on calorie content, focus on eating healthy foods (i.e. vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and lean meats).
Another quick tip is to not be fooled by “low-fat” snack or processed foods. The amount of calories you eat is more important than the amount of fat. Too many calories from carbs are just as bad, if not worse, than too many calories from unsaturated fats. If you plan healthy meals and start doing something active every day, you will start losing weight in no time. Try to think of it as a new way of life and you will be happier, healthier, and less miserable while you drop the pounds. Good luck!
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