Dr Hilary Jones on weight loss and the importance of sustaining the new and healthy you.

in Weight-loss

LighterLife had a combined weightloss of 55, 000 on their program, what do you make of this news?

The important thing about the LighterLife programme is that it incorporates psychological counselling with dietary and exercise advice, which all helps dieters keep the weight off. There is no point in losing the weight in the short term, you want to keep the weight off for the rest of your life.

What do you make of the obesity crisis we are facing?

We have this epidemic of obesity in this country, with more and more children becoming obese. In the near future we are going to have more people with diabetes and arthritis, heart disease, skin problems and psychological problems.

We need to get people to recognise that a healthy lifestyle just means being able to eat healthy food when you want to and enjoying exercise. It doesn’t need mean deprivation and torture. We need a healthier behaviour towards food, so we can choose nice food but we limit our calorie intake to what is appropriate for our energy expenditure. We also need to address any emotional issues that cause people to overeat, things like relationship problems or lack of self confidence.

What is the most important change people can make for a healthier lifestyle?

I would suggest doing moderate vigorous exercise on a regular basis, but exercise that you enjoy.

But the most important thing to keep you healthy in the future is giving up smoking.

A lot of people's excuses for not giving up smoking is the weight that they may gain when they give up. What would be your advice?

Some people may put on a little weight when they first stop smoking, but if your willpower is strong enough to stop smoking then you certainly have the willpower to lose weight. Nicotine Replacement Therapy will probably stop you from gaining weight, as you've got no withdrawal symptoms. 

What lifestyle choices are you suggesting people make to be healthier?

Making good choices about the food you eat, food that is both satisfying and varied. Exercising more, eating fewer calories and changing your attitude towards food. Getting into the right mindset about food is the most important, so you don’t comfort eat and you make sure you're eating for fuel, when you're hungry and you’re eating the right amount. If you do these things then you can be successful.

Are there such things as ‘superfoods’?

I feel it's advertising hype. If there was any single food that speeded up your metabolism to any significant degree, then we'd all be eating vast quantities of it. There are no superfoods on their own that are the answer to weightloss. There isn’t a quick fix medically or herbally, no matter what we might be told. The bottom line is we have to eat fewer calories, take up exercise and have a healthy attitude towards food. 

Is a detox a healthy way to kick-start a diet?

Naturally, the human body is a great detoxification system, that’s why we have a liver and a colon. Detoxes are a philosophical thing that was derived from the East, it's a discipline.

What I would prefer people to do if they wanted to lose weight is to go on a very low calorie diet of no more than 800 calories. That way you're burning off more calories in your general daily living than you are consuming. This will help you to lose weight quickly, but  that is only helpful provided you're learning to manage your weightloss in the future.

One of the programmes that addresses this is the Lighter Life programme, and it was the Lighter Life customers who achieved that 55,000 stone weight loss. LighterLife continue to monitor people and help people if they want help to maintain that weight loss.

What exercise routine could anyone can get involved with?

Any form of activity that makes you feel warmer, slightly out of breath and increases your pulse rate. 30 minutes of exercise, five times a week is all that is needed. It doesn't have to be in 30 minute chunks, it can be chunks of 10 minutes.

If you have medical problem because of your weight however, you need to be doing more exercise than that to get the weight down. Five days of 60 minutes exercise should work, but build up gradually until you have normalised your weight.

What if you don't have the time to exercise regularly?

The fittest people I know have jobs with very long hours and they get energised for these long shifts by making the time to exercise. If you're determined enough, you can do it.

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Ben Youngs has 1 articles online

Hilary Jones is a general practitioner and also a television and radio presenter, and a writer on medical issues.

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Dr Hilary Jones on weight loss and the importance of sustaining the new and healthy you.

This article was published on 2012/03/24