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Nowadays we hear about many diets, products and programs that promise rapid weight loss. Americans spend more than $30 billion every year on weight loss supplements. Why not, if people want to lose as much as a hundred pounds to be ready for summer, or shed ten pounds to fit into a wedding gown? On the other hand, some people feel they need to lose weight fast to avoid the complications related to obesity, such as diabetes, heart disease and stroke.

Whatever your reasons are, many medical experts advise against losing weight fast if it entails undergoing a starvation diet or taking products that contain laxatives, stimulants or other unsafe substances.

What It Takes to Lose Weight Fast

Weight loss experts believe one can lose at least three pounds a week safely by taking a healthy diet and getting lots of exercise. If that is fast enough for you, then all you have to do is to burn at least 500 more calories than the amount of calories you take in. That means taking only 1,000-1,200 calories and exercising one hour per day. You will also have to limit your salt and carbohydrate intake, which reduces body water retention.

Weight loss experts recommend consuming a diet with limited amounts of animal fat, starch, and added sugars. Eating fruits, vegetables, egg whites, skinless chicken or turkey breast, soy products, lean meat and nonfat dairy products also help you lose weight fast. Other tips from safe weight loss experts include:

  • Drinking plenty of water

  • Avoid stocking your pantry with tempting foods

  • Staying busy to avoid overeating

  • Eating meals from a plate on the table and avoiding eating from the fridge

  • Avoid skipping meals

  • Writing a food journal to track your eating habits

  • Avoiding emotional eating

Disadvantages of Losing Weight Fast

In spite of these recommendations some people would rather lose weight rapidly with less work-outs and fewer changes in their eating habits. They often resort to taking food supplements that promise amazing results without them having to burn calories or foregoing their bag of chips. However, these strategies are not proven safe or effective. After all, the FDA does not regulate advertised claims made by manufacturers of OTC weight loss supplements and products. These manufacturers can freely make these claims and do not need FDA approval before their products are marketed.

Furthermore, no pill, food supplement or diet has been scientifically proven to be effective for rapid weight loss.

The risks of rapid weight loss include:

  • Headache

  • Fatigue

  • Irritability

  • Dizziness

  • Constipation

  • Hair loss

  • Menstrual irregularities

  • Muscle loss

  • Formation of gallstones

  • Dehydration

  • Malnutrition

  • Electrolyte imbalance

Weight loss experts advise people who want to achieve rapid results to burn fat with a drastic reduction in calorie intake combined with regular exercise.

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