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Diet Or Exercise for Easy Weight Loss?

Each week we’ll be pulling out one of your emails from our mail bag and featuring them here. Feel free to submit as many questions as you would like. All questions having to do with Nutrition, Weight Loss and Obesity-related health conditions are fair game.

“Dr. Kim,

I am currently trying to slim down and tone up, but I am not seeing any weight loss. Is it because I’m not eating the right foods? Which is more important for weight loss: diet or exercise?"

- Niki, Gardena, California


Dear Niki:

Thanks for your email. The question you ask addresses a fundamental principal of weight loss: maintaining a healthy diet. Let's start by addressing your point about exercise first. It is an absolute truth that you can lose weight by dieting alone, but you can't lose weight by exercising alone. The reason is that greater changes in your body's caloric balance can be achieved by making changes in your diet than by making changes in your exercise level. But exercise is good for a number of reasons. First, it helps keep your eating in check. Most people who exercise regularly try to limit what they eat so they don't sabotage their efforts. Why put all that effort into exercising if you're going to jeopardize it by eating unhealthy? Second, it burns calories—but not as much as you think.

People who start a weight loss program believe that exercise is going to help melt away the pounds. Unfortunately, our bodies don't work that way. Our bodies are highly efficient. Under conditions of exertion and limited caloric intake, our bodies react in such a way that it metabolizes less fat. That being said, exercising does burn calories. It also does one very important thing: it sensitizes our bodies to insulin. Insulin is a hormone that is important for maintaining even sugar levels in our bodies. You are probably aware that insulin is what's missing in people with Type 1 Diabetes. Exercise helps keep insulin levels down. This is important because insulin is also partially responsible for the accumulation of fat in our bodies. So exercise is important for weight loss in a direct and indirect way.

As for the guidelines put forth by the American Weight Loss Centers, we individualize our recommendations, taking into consideration all of the current science out there about nutrition and metabolism. Our focus in creating our dietary recommendations came from helping people maintain their weight loss through easy weight loss programs and the use of weight loss products.

There are a million and one different ways to lose weight. All the ads and late night commercials take advantage of this. They advertise a new and different way to lose weight almost every week. You'll be surprised to know that, despite all the different ways someone can lose weight, there's only one way to maintain that way loss. There's no secret here. That way needs to be an individualized approach that looks at what your needs, diet preferences and circumstances are.

What’s great about working with a medical weight loss center is that you have access to easy weight loss programs, quick weight loss plans and FDA approved diet pills under the guided supervision of an experienced doctor. Visit one of our Pasadena or Orange County medical weight loss clinics to get support and info about our medical weight loss programs and FDA approved medical weight loss pills.

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