Most weight loss programs suggest you lose a pound to two pounds a week. Is it possible to lose more? The answer is yes, but not necessarily on a consistent basis. Your body burns only so many calories every day. It takes a 3500 calories deficit to lose a pound. Is it possible to remain healthy and still lose more than 2 pounds a week? Crunching the numbers will help clear the issue.
How many calories are necessary for your body to maintain weight?
While the numbers vary, based on activity level, gender and weight, using the average helps make it clearer. For women, it’s between 1600 and 2200 calories and for men between 2200 and 3000. If you exercised every day for an hour at high intensity, you might burn an additional 800 calories. So, for women, the maximum calorie loss could be between 2400-3000 calories lost if you ate nothing and exercised at high intensity each day for an hour. That would be an average weight loss of five pounds, but it’s not only not sustainable, it’s extremely unhealthy.
It’s about more than just losing weight, it’s keeping weight from returning.
One of the biggest weight loss problems many people face is keeping weight off permanently. While you can use starvation techniques to shed weight, the minute you go back to normal eating habits, that weight will return. It takes lifestyle changes to make that weight loss permanent. Quick weight loss programs don’t give you that time to develop permanent habits. Getting into the habit of eating healthier and working out regularly can help you shed a pound or two a week and help you keep it off permanently.
The more you weigh, the more weight you’ll lose initially.
While a pound or two a week is a good goal for most people, the more overweight you are, the more weight you can expect to lose initially. Someone who is 80 pounds overweight will burn far more calories than someone who is just ten pounds overweight. You can understand that when you consider how many calories you’d burn if you carried a 70 pound weight around all day. It simply takes extra effort, so it burns far more calories. As you lose weight, your weight loss will start to slow.
- The more muscle tissue you have also can determine how much weight you lose. The more muscle you have, the more calories you burn every day. It boosts your metabolism and makes losing weight easier.
- Exercising plays an important role in continuing weight loss. It builds muscle tissue that increases calorie burning as you’re losing weight, which decreases the amount of calories you burn.
- Using a starvation diet to lose weight faster can actually make it harder to shed pounds. Your body goes into starvation mode, slowing metabolism and some of the pounds you lose come from loss of muscle mass.
- Losing weight too fast can have side effects, like depression, gallstones and wrinkled skin. You’ll feel better and look better when you opt for the slower, yet more effective technique and aim for a pound or two a week.
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