Updated 09 December 2013

10 tips to lose weight

Need to shed some weight? Get rid of those extra kilos for good with these 10 expert weight loss tips, compiled by Health24's DietDoc, Dr Ingrid van Heerden.


Are you desperate to shed some weight? Get rid of those extra kilos for good by following our list of 10 expert weight loss tips, compiled by Health24's DietDoc, Dr Ingrid van Heerden.

  • If you are a very precise and organised person who likes to be in control of your life, then counting calories/kilojoules is probably going to work for you
  • If counting calories/kJ is not your scene, and you need support during weight loss, try joining slimming organisations such as Weigh-less or Weight Watchers, who provide plenty of support via their counsellors and group sessions
  • If you have any health problems such as metabolic syndrome, or type 2 diabetes or insulin resistance, or heart disease, then get the help of a registered dietician who will individualise your slimming programme and assist with your multiple dietary needs
  • Start exercising (if physically possible) because although your may not burn very many kcal or kJ during your exercise session, you will have increased the rate of energy turnover in your body for up to 24 hours and this will use up a lot more energy than your brisk walk or gym session
  • Reduce your fat intake because fatty foods and visible fat in the form of spreads, sauces, dressings and fat on meat, are the most energy-dense foods you can eat.

    Keep the following in mind:

    Energy contents:

    Carbohydrates 4 kcal or 17 kJ/gram
    Proteins 4 kcal or 17 kJ/gram
    Alcohol 7 kcal or 29 kJ/gram or ml
    Fat 9 kcal or 37 kJ/gram
  • Eat low-energy foods to fill you up - for example: most fresh fruits and vegetables, high-fibre foods and fat-free dairy products, have low kcal or kJ values and can be used as fillers to prevent hunger
  • Eat very high energy foods in small quantities - 1-2 teaspoons of oil on salad, 1 tablespoon of ice cream on a bowl of fresh berries, 1 tablespoon of grated Cheddar on pasta with a vegetable sauce, - start inventing your own clever energy-saving ideas.
  • If you find it difficult to lose weight despite sticking to the rules, then find out if you are not suffering from insulin resistance which can hamper weight loss. Ask your doctor to send you for the relevant tests and consult your dietician if you do have insulin resistance. The dietician will provide you with a low-fat, low-GI (glycaemic index) diet.
  • Don’t start using slimming pills and potions no matter how persuasive the advertisements are. You could ruin your metabolism and your health.
  • Don’t force your body to lose weight if you are already skin and bone, rather be sensible and consult a dietician to help you eat a balanced diet.


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