ik wil afvallen waar begin ik

I want to lose weight: where do I start?

Losing weight. It's a word everyone is often confronted with. Both during a weekday casual chat with a friend and in the media. Maybe even when we look at ourselves in the mirror. But what does it actually mean? Is it just numbers on the scales or is there more to it? You don't have to be on a strict diet. Nor does a war of attrition in the gym have to be an issue.

This blog takes a closer look at what it really means to achieve and maintain a healthy weight. You will find concrete advice, strategies and tips to incorporate healthy habits into your daily routine. They will not only promote your weight loss, but also your overall well-being.

wat is gezond gewicht insentials

What is a healthy weight?

When most people think of a healthy weight, they often immediately think of the Body Mass Index (BMI). This easy-to-calculate formula has been used for decades. It's used to assess whether someone falls within a weight range that can be considered 'normal'. However, a lot of experts agree that BMI is an inaccurate, even outdated tool to assess a person's health.

BMI is calculated by multiplying a person's weight (in kg) by their height (in metres) squared. Despite its practical and multiple uses, this index has some important limitations.

The Harvard School of Public Health argues that the Body Mass Index does not take into account some essential elements. More specifically, they refer to body composition. This is the ratio of fat, muscle and bone. Athletes and very muscular individuals may have a high BMI, for example. This doesn't mean they're in poor health. On the other hand, people with a 'normal' BMI may have a high percentage of visceral fat. This is linked to a higher risk of metabolic diseases.

Moreover, the Body Mass Index also doesn't take into account ethnic and racial differences in body composition. Research has shown that population groups can have different fat distributions for the same Body Mass Index. This calls into question the usefulness of BMI as a universal health measure.

Of course, weight does often say something, so we don't need to get rid of BMI altogether. But a broader approach that takes into account other aspects makes sense.

1. Measuring the ratio of body fat to muscle mass is important for assessing body composition. Using tools such as bioimpedance, DEXA scans or even girth measurements can provide valuable information about a person's physical condition.

2. Fat distribution: Visceral fat, also known as abdominal fat, is associated with a higher risk of cardiovascular and metabolic diseases. That's why health indicators such as waist circumference can be an interesting parameter.

3. Metabolic health: Measurements such as glucose, cholesterol and blood pressure levels can give a lot of information about overall health. A person may have a 'normal' Body Mass Index (BMI) but unbalanced metabolic health indicators, and vice versa.

4. Physical activity and muscle strength: Good health and a long life, ask for good physical fitness and muscle strength. Regular exercise, especially resistance exercises, helps improve physical fitness and overall health.

An assessment of not only weight, but also body composition, fat distribution, metabolic health and physical fitness is therefore useful.

By looking at health from a more global point of view, you can ensure to have a better understanding of your weight. This allows you to deal with it in a sustainable and healthy way.

Weight loss goals

When you take the step to lose weight, it's extremely important to set realistic goals. First and foremost, goals that take into account the long-term perspective. People are too often tempted by quick fixes and promises of immediate results. Unfortunately, these methods can be not only ineffective, but also detrimental to your health.

Why are realistic goals important?

Unrealistic expectations can lead to a lot of frustration and discouragement. This makes us more likely to give up. According to a study published in the Journal of Obesity, people who set overly ambitious goals are less likely to sustain their weight loss in the long term.

On the other hand, achievable goals offer the opportunity to take smaller, but more importantly, more steps. Victories that can be celebrated over and over again. This increases motivation and a sense of achievement. For example, aiming for 0.5 to 1 kg of weight loss per week is both reasonable and sustainable. Something that benefits not only your weight itself, but also your overall mental well-being.

Think long-term

It's important to see weight loss as a sustainable lifestyle change rather than a temporary fix. This means adopting healthy behaviours that you can sustain in the long term.

According to researchers, restrictive diets and intensive exercise programmes are not sustainable. They can lead to periods of losing and regaining weight, also known as 'yo-yo dieting'.

It's also important to focus on overall health rather than focusing solely on weight. A lot of other factors are important besides losing weight effectively. Just think about increasing your energy levels. Not to mention increasing self-confidence.

concrete doelen vermageren eetpatroon insentials

What are concrete goals?

To help you set realistic goals, here are some concrete tips:

1. Evaluate and adjust your diet: Instead of denying yourself things, focus on including nutritious foods in your diet. For example, put a large portion of vegetables on your plate every meal and a little less meat and potatoes.

2. Start with modest goals: Step by step. For example, start by walking for 30 minutes every day, five days a week. Then gradually increase the intensity or duration of your workouts.

3. To improve sleep quality, it's recommended to get 7-8 hours of sleep per night. Sufficient rest is essential for weight management and overall health.

4. Incorporate healthy stress management methods into your daily routine. For example, consider meditation, yoga or creative activities.

5. Regular monitoring and changes: Opt for a food diary or app to monitor your progress and change your goals when necessary. According to a study published in the Journal of Diabetes, Obesity, and Metabolism, regular monitoring is linked to greater long-term success in weight-loss efforts.

It's vital to set your goals realistically. That way, you're much more likely to lose weight effectively and also succeed in the long term. You also experience losing weight more positively when you choose a balanced and sustainable approach. So remember that every small step is important and that patience and perseverance are essential here.

hartig ontbijt bloedsuikerspiegel insentials

Importance of a healthy diet

A healthy diet goes beyond just counting calories. It's about keeping blood sugar levels stable throughout the day. It's crucial to avoid frequent spikes in blood sugar levels for optimal health. For example, if you were to replace a sweet breakfast with a savoury one, that already offers numerous benefits immediately. It helps keep those blood sugar levels stable.

Choosing nutritious food instead of empty calories is also essential. Therefore, opt for fresh fruits and vegetables. Lean proteins are also a good choice. Nutritious food will not only ensure weight loss. It also promotes your overall health.

Moreover, planning your meals in advance can have a significant impact. It reduces the urge to buy ready-made meals or eat junk food. By planning meals and snacks, you can better manage quantities and ensure that each meal is balanced and nutritious.

miracles don't exist

Importance of exercise

Physical exercise plays a crucial role in weight management and maintaining good health. It's not only about burning calories, but also about strengthening our bodies and minds. Two categories of exercise are often suggested: strength training and cardio, each with their own benefits.

To cardio, or not to cardio?

While some people at the gym only know the treadmill, others mainly work up a sweat under a bunch of heavy weights. There's often debate or confusion about the sense and nonsense of cardio training, but both make sense in their own way.

The benefits of strength training

Strength training is important for strengthening muscles and improving body structure. In the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, research has shown that regular strength training can not only increase muscle mass, but also improve bone density and boost metabolism in the long term.

This is beneficial for people who want to improve their physique and maintain their vitality as they age. Therefore, strength training is also very useful during menopause!

The great advantage of strength training is the after burn effect, which means you continue to burn energy at rest for a long time. This is because strength training causes minor damage to muscles. To repair this muscle damage, the body needs a lot of energy.

The benefits of cardio

In addition, there's cardio training such as running or cycling. This is very effective for improving cardiovascular capacity, as well as burning calories as long as the workout is long enough. It's recommended for people who want to improve their endurance and cardiovascular health. According to research as published in the European Journal of Applied Physiology, it has been shown that cardio can optimise weight loss and improve cardiorespiratory function.

The benefits of hiking

Often overlooked, walking or hiking is a very accessible physical activity. It's adaptable to all fitness levels and can be done almost anywhere. It's essential to get into the right heart rate zone. Usually this is between 50% and 70% of your maximum heart rate. This is necessary to burn fat and improve cardiovascular health without weakening your joints.

Applying these 3 key pillars on a regular basis can not only help you achieve your weight loss goals. It'll also improve your overall health. That way, you can bring a sustainable routine into your life that will promote your long-term wellbeing.

slaaproutine vermageren

Importance of good sleep and stress management

Weight loss is not just about diet and exercise. In this complex process, elements such as sleep quality and stress management must also be taken into account.

There's a link between sleep and body weight. Research suggests that sleep deprivation alters hormones that regulate appetite. This leads to more hunger and less healthy food choices. In fact, when sleep deprived, the body produces more ghrelin, a hormone that stimulates appetite, and less leptin, a hormone that signals satiety. This can lead to a tendency to consume more calories. Usually this is in the form of snacks high in sugar and fat, compromising weight-loss goals.

Constant stress can also hamper weight-loss efforts. The feeling of stress stimulates the production of cortisol, a hormone that if elevated for long periods of time can promote the accumulation of belly fat. High cortisol levels can also increase the desire to eat high-calorie foods, especially those containing sugars and fats. So even if you eat healthily and exercise regularly, high stress levels can hinder progress towards a healthy weight.

To lose weight more easily, it's important to take these 2 factors into account. How do you tackle this specifically?

  • Stick to a regular sleep routine.
  • Create an environment conducive to rest.
  • In addition, look for various relaxation methods that have been shown to lower cortisol levels. Some examples include meditation, yoga or deep breathing.

Sleeping well and proactively managing stress are partly a key to achieving and maintaining a healthy weight in a sustainable way.

Healthy habits to maintain weight loss

It's a bad idea to follow a strict diet or suddenly start exercising very intensively to maintain a healthy weight. In fact, it's vital to follow healthy, sustainable habits to achieve and maintain long-term results. Some healthy habits at a glance:

1) Food choice: think about what you're going to eat in advance. Create a menu. This will drastically reduce the urge for unhealthy habits in your diet.

2) Don't tack on overly challenging sports: opt for moderate and appropriate exercise. Not only intensive cardiovascular workouts, but also muscle-strengthening sessions. That way, you maintain your muscle mass, which is very important for maintaining a healthy metabolism in the long run.

3) A deliberate sleep routine: as mentioned above, hormones that regulate hunger and satiety can be disrupted by lack of sleep. Poorly thought-out eating decisions are often the result.

4) Manage stress levels: this is how you keep your cortisol levels in balance.

5) Consistency and patience: Last but not least; consistency and patience. They are the link to keep all your previous habits intact. Lasting results don't happen overnight. It's a way of life that you'll have to learn to implement.

The role of a burdened liver

A lot of people worry about their weight on a daily basis. This often affects self-image and mental well-being. However, problems losing or maintaining weight can sometimes be related to aspects that are less well known. Liver health in particular.

The liver plays a vital role in the metabolism of fats and sugars. When the liver is overloaded or fatty, it can struggle to perform its functions effectively. This hinders weight loss. If you have a burdened liver, it becomes almost impossible to lose weight. Several factors can cause liver overload.

A diet strategically adjusted and focused on supporting liver function and improving fat metabolism shows a lot of benefits. When you complement this with tailor-made supplements, you're even more likely to achieve your goals. Quality liver supplements containing the body's own antioxidants, boost the liver's natural detoxification. That way, you're going to boost metabolism as well. Not only does this benefit your weight, but it also markedly improves energy, sleep and general well-being.

It's vital to be aware of the impact of the liver in weight management. By looking at the root causes of liver overload, you can promote weight loss and experience long-term positive effects for overall health.

smart weight pack vermageren insentials

Discover the Insentials Smart Weight Pack

Insentials' Smart Weight Pack is an innovative solution for people who want to improve their weight management in a scientific and sustainable way. The pack contains carefully chosen science-based nutrients and aims to boost your own metabolism in such a way that your body can naturally switch to burning fat.

No miracles, just a push to get your internal stove 'burning' and thus promote natural weight loss.

The supplements in the Smart Weight Pack are specially designed to promote fat burning. Healthy diet and adequate exercise are always the basics, but supplementing with the right supplements can make losing weight drastically easier.

amandine de paepe missie insentials

Consult one of Insentials' experts

Every path to better health is different. That's why you can schedule customised sessions with experienced nutritionists and dieticians at Insentials. These health experts are here to help you achieve your goals. Whether that's sustainable weight loss or improving your diet for more energy, a customised consultation is easily scheduled.

Consultations are interactive and tailored to your specific needs. During an initial consultation, you will discuss your medical history, your current eating habits, your health goals and any dietary preferences. The team of nutritionists will then suggest a tailor-made, achievable diet, with specific recommendations for dietary supplements if needed.

At Insentials, we are committed to educating and empowering each client. The nutrition specialists are happy to provide you with theoretical insights and practical advice on how to maintain the diet in the long term. The support is useful both when your healthy habits are still in their infancy and when you just need to optimise them. The experts offer tailored support and advice.

Book an appointment with one of our nutritionists/dieticians today and start your path to better health with Insentials.

Achieving and maintaining a healthy weight is about more than some numbers on scales. It's about a broader approach that takes into account physical, mental and emotional well-being.