You’ve been exercising each day regularly but aren’t really shedding the kilos. Have you been watching your diet?

A recent study has shown that eating less is far more important than exercising to lose weight.

Everyone knows that the key to weight loss is to consume fewer calories than you burn. For most people, it’s easier to lower their calorie intake rather than burn more calories through increased exercise. That’s why consuming lesser calories is generally seen as being more effective for weight loss.

But a calorie is a calorie no matter what it comes from. You can gain weight eating too much healthy food as well as unhealthy food. It’s just a lot easier to overeat and consume more calories from junk food than from healthy food. But it can be done.

This is where a change in behaviour and habits helps. Exchange dense calorie-packed foods for foods that are less calorie-dense and more nutritionally dense. These are foods that bulkier, less energetically rich, have more or higher quality protein, are lower on the glycemic index and are more fibrous.

Eat five to six times a day, or about once every three hours, to maintain your blood-sugar level. Try and fit in two to three 200-calorie snacks, in addition to your main meals. Ideal snacks contain lean protein, healthy fats and complex carbohydrates. Frequent eating can also help to reduce feelings of anxiety and depression, and keep energy levels high through the day.

That said, exercise is very important to keep lost weight off. People who are not physically active are more likely to gain weight after their weight loss.

Aim to do aerobic (cardio) exercise, such as running or biking, for at least 150 minutes a week. The intensity should vary from moderate to vigorous so that you increase your cardiac capacity without overtaxing your body. Two times a week, also do a 20-minute session of resistance training, such as weight lifting.

Make it a habit to sit less throughout the day. A study published in the journalDiabetologia revealed that the more sedentary you are, the more you increase your risk of heart disease and diabetes.

Reduce calories, eat better, exercise, and most of all, remember that this practice must become a part of your lifestyle.

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Written by Sri Lakshmi

Sri Lakshmi

Post-pregnancy was a challenging time for Sri Lakshmi, who found herself suffering from weight gain, acute back pain and fibromyalgia; her husband, coincidentally was grappling with ailments of his own, a prolapsed disc and IBS. All of this triggered a need in her to pursue a healthier lifestyle, a passion that soon grew to a professional interest. A decade later, this former telecommunication engineer who is a BFY-certified fitness trainer, is now pursuing accreditation from the ACE. She feels fitness hasn’t just made her stronger, but more in control as a person, and believes HealthifyMe users stand to gain from her insights too. Judging fitness levels based on their activity levels, stamina and attitude towards food, she hopes to help you make sustainable routine changes that help you lifelong rather than just attain a specific goal. She counsels against sudden changes in food or activity, preferring a gradual shift instead. Never make it about all or nothing, she says, as goals become more cumbersome. Wise words!

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1 COMMENT

  1. I strictly follow workout for obvious reasons of course. It strengthens the body from inside, makes us rough and tough by staying healthy at all times. Strictly against the diet plan. But yes if you are obese then dieting becomes important.

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