Times of Oman
Nov 26, 2015 LAST UPDATED AT 01:09 PM GMT
Is it possible to change your weight and shape?
December 13, 2012 | 12:00 AM

The first step towards losing weight is to accept that you are overweight – that the scales are not wrong – that your dress hasn't shrunk in the wash – and that the roll around your stomach is real. You must want to lose weight for yourself – not for your husband or your children – it has to be you that want to be slimmer because it is important to you – and to your health. The amount you need to eat varies from person to person and depends upon how active you are, but the average woman needs about 2,000 calories to maintain her body weight, and for a man this figure is nearer 2,500. If you consume more calories than your body needs, then you will gain weight and put fat on your bones. The reason for being overweight is eating extra calories daily. Most people who are obese are eating just a few extra calories each day. Take Suzanne for example: she simply gave up eating her daily chocolate bar and 2 packets of chips and after 3 months she had lost weight.

What will losing weight bring you?
A very big smile, slimmer figure, a healthier body, more energy, improved confidence, and a rise in self-esteem. You have achieved something of value.

Get in control
The early months of the year are a period when we think about getting back into shape. Once festivities such as Diwali, Eid and Christmas are out of the way, we have time once again to think of taking care of our bodies. It is the time to say, "It is payback time for my body," which means – fresh healthy food, exercise, water, relaxing time, keeping junk food to a minimum.

Your body loves a regular routine and a balanced blood sugar level, which reduces cravings.

Try to limit coffee to mornings only, and caffeine drinks, such as tea, to a maximum of four cups in the day. Drink water any time and at least eight glasses of water a day. Cut out fizzy drinks and alcohol but have as many fresh fruit juices as you want.

Try to sit down and let your body enjoy your meal. Don't eat whilst sitting at your desk – take a lunchtime stroll and get some fresh air.

If you are cooking for the family, just add rice, potatoes, or pasta to their evening meal to make it easy for yourself.

Look at your fat intake
Middle Eastern and Asian cooking contain high levels of fat and salt.

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