Thursday, 22 July 2010 7:29 P.M.
Tips to Jump Start Weight Loss in the New Year
is possible to loose weight in the new year if you set specific
-- Losing weight is at the top of many a New Year's resolution
list. In addition to maintaining a healthy diet and getting enough
exercise, what else can one do to make sure those good intentions
have a lasting impact throughout the year?
research-based tips from investigators at Fred Hutchinson Cancer
Research Center that may help jump start one's weight loss progress
in the coming year.
moving each day. We all know that exercise is crucial to losing
weight, but sometimes it's easier said than done. The task need
not be daunting; all it takes to see a weight-loss benefit is 30
to 60 minutes of aerobic activity daily. "You don't need to
be athletic. Just brisk walking or dancing to your favorite music
or using an aerobic exercise machine like a stationary bike or treadmill
is all you need to do - just try to do it each day," said Anne
McTiernan, M.D., Ph.D., director of the Hutchinson Center's Prevention
Center. The exercise doesn't have to be all at once. "You can
break it into 10- or 15-minute sessions throughout the day to get
the weight-loss benefit," she said.
a food journal. "By spending a little extra time to write down
everything you eat and drink, you'll be able to see where extra
calories sneak in," said postdoctoral research fellow Caitlin
Mason, Ph.D., an exercise and health researcher in the Public Health
Sciences Division of the Hutchinson Center. "There are lots
of good online tools that can help estimate the calorie content
of common foods and track your weight loss progress over time,"
3. Set realistic
goals. "The biggest mistake people make when trying to lose
weight is trying to lose too many pounds too fast or setting unrealistic
goals," Mason said. "For long-term success, aim for a
slow, steady weight loss of about 1 to 2 pounds a week. No one wants
to lose weight only to gain it all back - and often more - a few
4. Set specific
goals. Instead of resolving to "lose weight," which is
too general, set several smaller but more specific goals, such as
eating five servings of vegetables per day, taking a 15-minute walk
at lunch each day or drinking six glasses of water per day. "Adding
healthy behaviors to your routine is often easier than telling yourself
'don't do this' or 'don't eat that,'" Mason said.
let one slip-up derail your efforts. "Don't throw your entire
routine out the window after one bad day," Mason said. "Instead,
try to identify the specific barriers that got in your way and think
through strategies to avoid such challenges in the future."
For example, to avoid the temptation of buying a candy bar while
standing in the checkout line at the grocery store, make sure to
eat a healthy snack, such as a handful of nuts or a piece of string
cheese, before going shopping.
yoga. Two observational studies conducted by cancer prevention researcher
Alan Kristal, Dr. P.H., a member of the Hutchinson Center's Public
Health Sciences Division, have found an association between regular
yoga practice and weight maintenance and weight loss. One of his
studies, published in 2005, found that regular yoga practice is
associated with the prevention of middle-age spread in normal-weight
people and the promotion of weight loss in those who are overweight.
A follow-up study published in 2009 found that regular yoga practice
is associated with mindful eating, and people who eat mindfully
are less likely to be obese. "These findings fit with our hypothesis
that yoga increases mindfulness in eating and leads to less weight
gain over time, independent of the physical activity aspect of yoga
practice," Kristal said. "Mindful eating is a skill that
augments the usual approaches to weight loss, such as dieting, counting
calories and limiting portion sizes. Adding yoga practice to a standard
weight-loss program may make it more effective."
Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, our interdisciplinary teams of
world-renowned scientists and humanitarians work together to prevent,
diagnose and treat cancer, HIV/AIDS and other diseases. Our researchers,
including three Nobel laureates, bring a relentless pursuit and
passion for health, knowledge and hope to their work and to the
Source: Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
can also use these tips to loose weight in the new year.