Who better to listen to when it comes to losing weight and keeping it off than people who have lost weight and kept it off.
The National Weight Control Registry was started in 1994 to identify adults who have lost weight and kept it off. Specifically, the registry’s 6,000-plus members have lost at least 30 pounds and kept if off for at least a year. Recently, they were asked how they did it and seven common themes rose to the top. Warning: None of these will make you slap your forehead and say, “Aha! So that’s how you do it! You’ve likely heard all of these before, and you’ve heard them because, at least for the 6,000-plus members of the National Weight Control Registry, they work. Without further jabber, the seven common themes for weight loss are:
- Be active. More than half (54 percent) of NWCR members expend more than 2,000 calories each week. This equals about 200 minutes per week of moderate-intensity exercise.
- Turn off the television. About 63 percent of NWCR members watch television for fewer than 10 hours per week.
- Enjoy a low-calorie, low-fat diet. The average NWCR member consumes 1,380 calories per day, and less than 30 percent of these calories come from fat.
- Keep your diet consistent. Resisting the urge to “splurge” on holidays or weekends, NWCR members eat the same foods on a regular basis.
- Eat breakfast. Most NWCR members (78 percent) eat breakfast each day. This helps curb hunger and overeating later in the day.
- Show some restraint. NWCR members exert great control over their eating habits, and they rarely overeat.
- Keep track of your progress. Weighing in at least once a day and keeping track of food intake is essential for most NWCR members.