by JoEllen Krauss

When you need to lose weight, there is really only one prescription:expending more calories than you take in. There are many supplements on the market claiming they will reduce the size of your waist. Instead, most of them waste the money in your wallet and leave you feeling worse than ever without losing the pounds and keeping them off. Before you start on weight loss supplements, do your homework and look for those few products that can really help without wasting your hard earned money.

Weight loss supplements do one of three things. Some increase your metabolism which can lead to excess sweating and the jitters. Others cut cravings for food and help you avoid that second helping. Some claim to block the uptake of carbohydrates. Be careful. Many of these products do not perform as advertised, or have side effects that can be unpleasant, or dangerous. When you find a supplement that is legitimate that can assist with one of these three goals, remember, it is only an aid to the real method of weight loss: Eating less and exercising more.

Knowing how many calories you are consuming each day is the place to start when going on a diet. Start a journal and write down everything you eat and drink. Do not leave anything off the list, not even if it is just one little bite of an ice cream bar, or a few sips of soda. Every calorie counts when losing weight and calories add up fast. Become conscious of each and every calorie by keeping a small note pad with you and writing it all down.

There are lots of online calorie counters to help you add up your daily intake. These sites also have areas where you can enter your age, sex and activity level and see how many calories you need to maintain your weight. Remember, this amount is what you need to consume to stay the weight you already are.

So, whatever that amount is, you need to eat less. Eating at least 500 calories a day less than the amount you need for maintaining your current weight is the general recommendation. However, do not eat less than about 1,100 calories a day or your body may respond by reducing your metabolism to compensate. This will mean it will be even harder to lose weight.

Once you have reduced calorie intake, add some extra exercise. A walk around the block after dinner, or parking at the far side of the parking lot and adding some extra steps will mean more calories burned. Just like calorie intake, every little movement you make means a few more calories burned. It all adds up at the end of the day.

Once you have a program of eating less and exercising more, look around and find a supplement that can assist with these basic steps in weight loss. Try one at a time and do not use more than the recommended amount. If you try one, and it has bad side effects for you, stop taking it and switch to a different kind.

Research products carefully and do not expect any magic bullets for success. Supplements are called supplements for a reason. Legitimate ones add a little extra help to the basic program of eating less and moving more. The bottom line is to lose weight, not your money.

About the author:

JoEllen Krauss writes in her spare time for Providian Medical. After giving birth to her first child she’s on a mission take the baby weight away and is always on the lookout for tips to achieve this.

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