Losing weight is not about looking prettier, slim, or attractive; it’s always been about being healthy and fit so that you don’t end up with issues related to your body. In fact, weight loss has a direct impact on a person’s self-esteem as well, and as people say, a healthy body and mind is what would lead to a happier life.
In today’s world, teenagers are the most affected people due to weight gain as they are bullied, teased, and given constant reminders to lose weight, which eventually makes way for unhealthy practices to shed weight “fast.” But this article on “weight loss for teens” would guide you in the correct way and inform you about what changes you’d have to make in your diet and lifestyle for a sustainable way to lose weight.
We recommend you consult a dietician or a doctor before starting any such weight loss practice, as they can help you in your journey.
Benefits of Losing Belly Fat
As a person transitions into their teenage phase, their body goes through several physical, emotional, and hormonal changes, and some of these changes might affect them adversely, such as gaining weight. It might have an impact on their social life, and it could also be a cause for many psychological problems, such as depression as well.
Therefore, maintaining the correct body weight as per your BMI would benefit you in the long run. In some cases, people with obesity issues are also prone to diabetes, high cholesterol, heart disease, depression, high BP, and even cancer. Moreover, it’d also have an effect on your joints; they’d have to bear more pressure than normal if you’re obese, which could turn into arthritis at a later stage. Along with all this, you must also remember that there’s no trick to “how to lose weight fast for teens.”
Sustainable Weight Loss Tips
Instead of searching on google, “how to get skinny fast?” it’d be in your best interest to understand and accept that losing weight is not a miracle that could happen over a day or two. In fact, this idea of quickly losing weight could become harmful to your body because a lot of teenage girls and boys turn to fad diets to do so. However these diets might show good results initially, but once you return to your regular routine, you’d gain weight at double the speed.
It’s essential to follow the proper routine and diet plan if you want your weight loss journey to be successful. Here’s how to go about it.
- Set Realistic Goals – Now, the first step is to set realistic and achievable goals regarding your body image. To do so, you’d need to change your mindset and understand that you’re losing weight to improve your health and for no other reason. You can’t expect yourself to shed 6-7 kgs in a day or two; otherwise, it’d only lead to disappointment.
- Reduce Sugary Beverages – It’s a well-known fact that beverages, such as colas, energy drinks, fruit juices, etc. have loads of added sugar in them, which is one of the main reasons for weight gain. Such sweetened beverages could also lead to diabetes, fatty liver disease, acne, and so on.
- Start with Physical Activity – By doing physical activity, we don’t necessarily mean joining a gym; the goal is not to sit around a lot and keep your body in movement to get rid of that excess fat. You could choose any activity that interests you, such as swimming, yoga, biking, etc., as it’d help you burn calories. In addition, such activities have an effect on your mood as well, which makes you less prone to depressive symptoms. Without exercise or any physical activity, losing weight is impossible.
- Consume Nourishing Foods – The most vital weight loss tip is to have a good intake of nutrients in your diet. Teenagers’ bodies are still in a developing stage, so they require a good amount of nutrients instead of caloric food items. They should include vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and protein rich food, such as eggs, chicken, and nuts, in their meals. These are known as healthy fats.
- Don’t Avoid Fat – Just because you want to lose weight doesn’t mean you should run away from fats. Eating food with fat content is also good for your growth and development, so don’t avoid it altogether. What you should do is choose healthy fats over unhealthy one, such as avocados, fish, olive oil, etc., instead of fried food or baked items.
- Don’t Follow Fad Diets – One of the main rules of dieting is to not follow just any diet blindly without making sure that it works well for you. Such fad diets don’t have long term effects on your body and can even do more harm than good because they are restrictive and hard to follow. Being consistent is the key to sustainable weight loss.
- Don’t Skip Meals – What a lot of teenagers don’t understand is that skipping meals isn’t going to help them lose weight; in fact, it’d have the opposite effect because you’d want to eat the entire day due to hunger. Eating a balanced meal is what you should focus on because it keeps your energy up, and you wouldn’t feel like having snacks in between meals.
- Avoid Diet Foods – There are a lot of brands selling drinks and eatables in the name of diet foods, but trust me, none of it helps. All these items are full of calories, and artificial sweeteners, which could have adverse effects on your body, such as migraines, weight gain, or stomach related issues. Such food items don’t contain any nutrients as well. You should also avoid weight loss supplements.
- Incorporate Mindful Eating Practices – It’s essential to develop a healthy relationship with food and be aware of what you’re putting in your body. Binge eating is quite common among teens as they eat their food while watching television or while using their phones. If you start focusing on your food while eating, it’d have a positive impact on your weight.
- Stay Hydrated – The most basic rule for shedding stubborn fat is to intake a good amount of water instead of relying on energy drinks, juices, etc. Drinking water also suppresses your urge to eat snacks or other junk food, especially when you aren’t hungry.
- Don’t Compare Yourself to Others – An unhealthy and unconscious habit of ours could be to compare ourselves with others who we think are better than us. Teenagers are especially prone to doing so because of their dissatisfaction with their bodies. They make the wrong people their role models and wish to become like them, but it’s crucial to understand that everybody’s journey isn’t the same. You should feel good about the fact that you’re on the right path.
- Don’t Take Too Much Stress – Stress has always been one of the main factors for weight gain because it increases cortisol levels, which leads to more hunger pangs. You obviously can’t control the stressors in your life, but taking too much stress would negatively impact your weight loss journey. You should try some stress-relieving methods after consulting a school counselor or psychologist to help you.
- Get Adequate Sleep – Sleeping for an adequate amount of time is quite an important aspect of shedding fat. Teenagers are required to sleep for 9-10 hours a day to function correctly.
Role of Parents in the Weight Loss Journey
When a teenager is working on losing weight, there might be times when they become demotivated or lose hope due to not getting the desired results. During such times, parents need to be the biggest cheerleaders for their children and encourage them in every way. Here’s how you can also be a part of your child’s weight management.
- Keep a good supply of healthy foods at home.
- Exercise with your child, or do any physical activity they are interested in, like walking, playing basketball, etc.
- Support them by eating healthy meals yourself.
- Cook baked items on your own instead of buying from outside, as this would reduce the calorie content to some extent.
- Constantly offer positive affirmations to them, and remind them that they are doing this to stay healthy and not to lose fat.
What If You Are Unable To Lose Weight?
If you’ve been following everything in the right manner, focusing on your diet, exercising, and looking after yourself, but still, it’s not helping you lose weight, then there might be a few reasons for this.
- Medical Conditions – Due to certain medical conditions, such as hypothyroidism, PCOS, depression, etc., losing weight might become slightly harder for you than others. You should consult a doctor if you feel that you’re facing a hard time shedding fat. However, these conditions don’t mean that you can never lose weight, so don’t give up.
- Eating Disorders Warning Signs – Eating disorders, such as bulimia, anorexia, etc., are more likely to develop during teenage years and would affect the person’s weight loss practices. In case a parent or anyone notices warning signs mentioned below then you should consult a doctor or a psychologist.
- Constant dieting
- Evidence of purging or vomiting food or taking laxatives
- Avoiding social situations with food
- Extreme exercise routine
- Overly conscious about body weight or shape
- Social withdrawal
- Avoiding eating food
- Sudden weight loss or gain
Keep repeating the mantra “my body doesn’t define me” until you start believing it. It’s a good practice to stay healthy and fit; therefore, you should be careful about the weight loss regime you follow for managing your weight, but make sure you do it for the right reasons. Weight loss for teens is beneficial in a lot of ways; therefore, we hope you’re successful in your journey to lose weight, and our article helped you do that.