The year 2009 is nearing the end and millions of people are thinking what they are going to do the next year. Is your New Year’s resolution to lose fat? If it is, then the time to start is now. The most important part of fat loss is knowledge. People simple do not know enough about nutrition and exercise to be successful. I have a few simple fat loss tips that are really helpful.

1. Use exercise to create a calorie deficit rather than diets

The hardest part about weight loss, is staying on a diet. We all know how hard this can be and some diets are especially hard. People believe that starving themselves is the best way to go, but it is not. The less you eat, the harder it is for you to stay on your diet. Do not make your diet plans very strict or they will backfire on you. Instead you should focus more on calorie burning through exercise, because it is much more effective. First of all you do not have to starve yourself and therefore you are less likely to fail. Exercise raises your metabolic rate. The faster your metabolic rate is the more calories you burn and strict diets slow down your metabolic rate. Exercise is good for your health and diets are now. By the way both weight training and aerobic training are essential.

2. Do not skip meals and eat more frequently

Another important thing you have to consider is consistency. You have to eat the right amount of foods, the right frequency and not skip meals. Some people do not eat breakfast very often and even think this helps them. But in fact skipping meals will slow down your metabolic rate and of course if you skip meals then your next meal is most certainly too large. 5-6 small meals a day, which consists of the right amount of proteins, carbs and fats is important. As I said before, be consistent. You can not lose fat successfully if you eat correctly for 2 days and skip meals the third day.

3. Do not stay on negative calories for too long

I am sure you have friends or family who are on diets. For some people it has become a habit to go on diets. But these people fail most of the time, as you have surely noticed. Why? Well, the problem is that if you stay on very low calories for too long, then your body will fight back and force you to eat. Sooner or later people will give up and eat way too much. Do not torture yourself like that. It is necessary to give yourself a break and increase your calories from time to time. For example you can be on negative calorie balance for 3 days and on the fourth day increase your calorie by just a bit. You can not hold your breath forever right? So you also can not stay on a negative calorie balance forever.

4. Lose fat slowly and be patient

The biggest mistake or one of the biggest mistakes that people often make, is rushing. Take your time and be patient. There is no need to lose more than 1-2 pounds per week. Yes, there are people who lose 5 or more pounds or more, but they are also very likely to fail because they also lose muscle. The key is to lose fat, not muscle. When you try to lose too much weight too quickly, then you will lose muscle. If you are able to lose 3-4 pounds per week, without losing muscle mass, then fine. Losing fat is not a race.

You may want to start a healthy weight loss program now or you have just in the weight loss battles.  In any situation, there are at least 3 things to look at in the early stage of a weight loss program.

1) Choose your battles

When you first start in a healthy weight loss program, avoid yourself to be overwhelmed by too much information.  It is especially easy to get caught up in the small battles among low fat and low carbohydrates (low carb) diet theorists about food like coffee, diet sodas, sugar alcohol, cake,  cheese, wine etc. Please do not get sucked in.  Some of my friends simply cannot imagine how to live without coffee. So, you do not need to give up things when you join a healthy weight loss program. The important concept in healthy weight loss is that you are trying to make changes on a continual progress basis. The name of the weight loss game is direction, not perfection. If all that is standing between you and a healthier low-carb diet is a couple of diet colas, keep the colas for now. Maybe you will give them up later or maybe you won’t, it is alright.  Just learn to choose your battles and remember, you do not have to do everything all at once.

2) Avoid junk food, no matter high-carb or low-carb

Affecting by advertisement and some misconception, a lot of people think that they can eat any things as long as it is labeled low carbohydrates or low-carb. This could easily result in the following scenario: an overweight population of “low-carbers” with swelling waistlines and skyrocketing health issues. A typical scene of this scenario scrolls through Disneyland, where you can easily see these “low-carbers” grasp a vat-size cup of sugar-free soda with one hand, with another hand holds any of a zillion “carbohydrates free” snack food yet to be invented – hot dogs on low-carb buns, low-carb cotton candy, low-carb popcorn etc.

What do you think after over eating all this low-carb foods?  Now you know why you need a healthy weight loss program. For healthy weight loss purpose, cutting carbohydrates alone is not enough.  You just need to cut the junk food.  We have to learn, unfortunately, that in most cases the food industry is not our friend.  If carb-free becomes just another slogan like low-fat did and we become addicted to carb-free, but high calorie, chemically enhanced junk food, we will have traded one idiotic notion for another and our health will be the same bad shape it was before.

3) Invest some time in your kitchen

Let’s look at some statistic at the past. People spend $6 billion on fast food in 1970. In the year 2000, people spent $110 billion on fast food, virtually 18 times of what people spent in 1970. Fully 90% of the money spent on food in the United States is spent on processed food. Besides, the typical American eats 3 fast-food burgers and 4 orders of fries per week. That is why some people say that people nowadays exchange our health for convenience. If you concern about your health and your weight, and want to join a healthy weight loss plan, it is time to stop eating processed food. In fact, you can spend a little time in the kitchen, preparing your own food for healthy weight loss purpose. Buy some cookbook or get some eating smart tips, then cook your own breakfast and make your own snacks.  A sharing from a dieter who succeeded losing pounds said “Treating food in this new way is definitely a challenge and a learning experience, but it beats my old way of eating that left me fat, tired and depressed.”  It is your choice now of whether want a healthy life and diet habit.

In a healthy weight loss program, we need to identify very clearly, that that is no free lunch in this world. You need to put effort to learn all these things for your health and healthy weight loss effects.  There is no shortcut for healthy weight loss. You need to adjust your diet habit, perform right exercise, and make use of some supplements. These are the right approach in a healthy weight loss program.