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November 05, 2018 4 min read

By Ana Reisdorf, MS, RD

Obesity is a common problem that is becoming more widespread in the U.S. with every passing year. Excess fat not only means you can’t wear those body-hugging jeans anymore, but it brings a host of health problems with it. It is essential to stay fit if you want to avoid health issues down the road.

The following weight loss tools and tips can be of great help in formulating a weight-loss plan for yourself:

Fitbit 

The Fitbit is great for tracking weight loss and motivating you to go that extra mile. For instance, you can increase the distance of your walk or run on a daily basis and keep tabs on the number of calories being burned. It’s important to get up and move throughout the day because the more active you are, the more calories you can burn. Seeing positive numbers on the Fitbit gives you a self-confidence boost to continue with your fitness regimen.

Walking

This is perhaps one of the most common and extensively used weight loss techniques. You don’t need to go to the gym or buy fancy workout clothes to lose weight. Just go for walks on a regular basis, maintain consistency in your routine, and soon your will lose those excess pounds.

Weight-Loss Apps

Tracking the food you eat with a weight-loss app can help you understand where you're going wrong. For instance, you might be overeating, but are unaware. Even if you feel you are eating healthy meals and snacks, the portions could be too high, and the balance of nutrients may be off as well. Tracking ensures you are accountable for actions and can make changes accordingly. There are numerous weight-loss apps — many of them free — that can be used to scan food labels, create custom recipes, track macronutrients and set goals.

Portion Control

Portioning out food properly and accurately is arguably the most effective step you can take when it comes to weight loss. Portion control containers make it easy to color code by food type, or you can sort foods in different compartments. For example, you can portion out calorie-dense items like nuts or starches. There’s even a meal-prep bag that comes with three, full-size meal containers, an ice pack and room for two shake/beverage bottles — so you can portion all your meals to take to the office and bring along your INVIGOR8 shakes!
 
Individual containers can be tossed into backpacks and handbags. And you can opt for stackable jars that save space while portioning snacks like dried fruits and keeping your protein powder or vitamins handy. Once you get your portions under control, the weight will start melting away.

Measuring Cups

These items are come to mind for use in baking and cooking, but they work wonders for weight control as well. An extra scoop of granola or too much shredded cheese can mean the difference between losing 1 pound and gaining 2. Always keep measuring cups and spoons close at hand when you whip up meals, and soon the weight-loss results will be apparent. Consider purchasing a set of collapsible measuring cups so you can carry them along while traveling.

Personal Blender

Do you like a refreshing protein shake after an intense workout, or do you prefer to drink one in the morning that is packed with antioxidants? Whatever your choice, whipping up a healthy shake is a great way to get more nutrients into your body. Using a regular-size blender can make portion control more difficult, so stick with a personal-size blender with a blending vessel that doubles as a portable bottle.

Fitness Bands

Do you flash back to the '80s when you hear the term “fitness bands”? Resistance training with these things is one of the best ways to stay fit when you have no time to get to the gym. Since they’re lightweight and portable, it’s easy to keep them handy for when you’re watching TV or to throw them in your suitcase when you’re travelling. Strengthening exercises for your shoulders hips, arms, legs and glutes can get you back in shape in a few weeks. Professional-grade bands come in different resistance levels and can help increase flexibility and strength, and tone muscle without adding bulk.

'Smart' Water Bottles

Drinking more water can help you lose weight faster while improving your overall health, but with your busy schedule it might not be feasible to keep tabs on water intake throughout the day. Instead, opt for an insulated water bottle with a consumption tracker. These bottles track the amount of water you consume in a day, keeping you accountable and subtly encouraging you to drink more water.

Negative Energy Balance

How many calories do you need daily? It’s simple: Multiply your weight in pounds times 12 to calculate your weight maintenance number, or the number of calories you need to maintain your weight at your present exercise level.

To lose weight, you need to create a negative energy balance — that is, decrease the calories you take in (eating less) and/or increase the calories you burn (exercising more). Of course, it’s best to opt for a combination of eating less and exercising more.  But to give you an idea of what to expect from simply cutting back on calories, if you eliminate 500 calories per day from your weight maintenance number, you can lose about 1 pound per week. Just don’t go below 1,200 calories per day because it will be difficult to get adequate daily nutrients below this amount.

It’s debatable as to whether body weight is the best indicator of overall health, but it definitely helps to know where you stand if you’re trying to drop a pants size. Weighing yourself helps keep you mindful of your progress. But don’t be obsessed about hopping onto the scale every day; weight loss takes time so be patient, grasshopper.

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