Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Eat Less Versus Exercise More: Where to Begin?

Situation:  My husband and I have tried to lose weight in the past, but we never took it seriously and gained back any weight that we lost. This time we’re going to do it right. We know that if we want to keep the pounds off, we need to change our eating and exercise habits, but taking both on at once is overwhelming.
 I said that we should focus on our eating habits, but my husband feels its more important to start exercising first. Any suggestions on how we should get started?Strategies: That is a terrific question! In general, it is better to treat changing your eating habits and becoming more active as two sep- arate events. Why? Different behavior changes that are begun at the same time are more likely to be abandoned at the same time, but if the changes are made separately and one is discontinued, it will have a minimal impact on the other. When it comes to weight loss, your best bet is to start by reducing food calories. Pick a healthful eating plan and take a few weeks to get comfortable with  it. Because a reduction in your food intake has a greater potential to bring about noticeable weight loss than exercise does, a few weeks of reducing your calories should have you both feeling good about your progress. Then, once you feel comfortable with the changes in your eating, start on exercise. By having both changes in place within a month or so of beginning your weight-loss effort, you’ll get the advantages of both without being overwhelmed by too much change at the beginning.

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