A Winning Formula for Losing Weight

Here’s a handy formula for losing weight: To lose one pound, cut 3,500 calories.

Play with the formula to find a balance that suits your lifestyle. For example, you can choose to eliminate 500 calories from your diet daily or burn an extra 500 calories through exercise.

“Crash diets never work,” says Robert A. Stanton, MD, president of the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine. “So if you take 250 calories out of your diet every day and add 250 calories worth of exercise, you can still lose a pound a week.”

Cutting even 100 calories a day for a year results in a 10-pound loss.

To cut about 100 calories from your diet:

  • Choose diet soda instead of the sugary kind.
  • Skip cheese on your sandwich.
  • Toss salad with one tablespoon of dressing instead of two.
  • Substitute a 6-inch corn tortilla for a 10-inch flour tortilla.

To burn about 100 calories through exercise:

  • Walk twice around the block.
  • Wash your car.
  • Dance for about 20 minutes.
  • Shop at the mall for 30 minutes.    
 

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