If you're a type 2 diabetic, you've probably been told to lose weight, to diet and to exercise in order to improve your health. But where do you begin? Figuring out what kind of diet and what kind of exercise to do can literally take you in a thousand different directions, regardless of who you are.
Simplification is key in figuring it all out, but one common formula is often used to help people lose weight: there are 3,500 calories in 1 pound of fat, so if you create a 3,500 calorie deficit in your diet through eating and exercise, you could lose up to a pound. Potentially, that is. This simple formula isn't the same for everyone.
Let's play through some scenarios so you can adapt the formula for yourself.
Let's say you're exercising 7 times per week.
We have all heard that exercising only 3 times per week can greatly improve our health. And, any exercise is better than no exercise! But we've all met people who skip breakfast, walk to the mailbox three times a week and are sorely disappointed when they don't lose 20 pounds in a month. Sadly, it doesn't quite work that way!
Realistically, a person walking a vigorous mile in 10 minutes burns about 100 calories.
At this rate, their heart rate should be elevated and they should be sweating.
If this person walks 5 miles in 50 minutes in a day, that equals about 500 calories burned.
If this person does this 7 days a week, that's about 3,500 calories burned, or about 1 pound of weight loss.
All 50 minutes do not have to be done at one time and not every person going to be able to do a mile in 10 minutes.
Let's say you change your diet.
If a person cuts their calorie intake by 500 calories a day for 7 days a week, this decreases the total weekly calorie intake by 3,500 calories, or 1 pound per week.
Combining these two exercise and diet changes will help bring about a weekly weight loss of 2 pounds. If half of each idea is carried out, then you might see one pound lost weekly.
Every person is different, though, and many factors must be considered. But in simplistic terms, this formula can help us realize that we are not going to drop 20 pounds in a month by simply skipping breakfast and walking to the mailbox three times a week!
If you're overweight, your weight probably didn't appear overnight, so don't expect to lose it overnight, either. But don't be discouraged! Talk to your healthcare professional or dietitan to get a more personalized plan. This is an excellent guideline for beginners that can be easily adapted.
Blasting is an excellent first step!