Trying to lose weight? Be safe

Brooklyn Spencer, staff writer

As spring and summer inch closer and the thought of looking good in a prom dress lingers in the minds of teenagers, they may try to lose weight in order to look their best. Also, hotter months often means less clothing and more of your body becomes visible.
Dieting, weight loss and overall wellness is something health teacher, Justine Howell, knows a lot about.
“Losing weight is a process, its not something that can happen quickly and still be considered healthy. People who lose weight quickly are going to be 98 percent more likely to gain the weight back or more once they stop doing whatever diet they were using,” said Howell.
It’s important to know boundaries and how to be help someones body when losing weight. A persons health is more important than their size. Everyone needs to eat an appropriate amount of calories for their body type, but when losing weight, they should burn 500 more calories than they consume. People need strong bones and muscles to exercise, therefor, eating less than 1050-1200 calories is counterproductive, according to Kathleen M. Zelman, MPH, RD, LD in her article How to Lose Weight Fast and Safely on WebMD.com.
Long-term fasting and starving oneself are some of the most unhealthy things they can do while trying to lose weight. It lowers their metabolism and can weaken the immune system.
Setting realistic goals is important in losing weight and not gaining it back. Aiming to lose one to two pounds per week is healthier than losing too fast. When one drops weight quickly, they often lose more water weight and muscle than actually burning fat says Donald Hensrud, M.D. at the Mayo Clinic.
Weighing yourself regularly, counting calories, and having a food journal are helpful tools. By recording every inch and every pound a person loses, accurate results appear and not what the brain “sees” in the mirror.
Health teacher, Justine Howell, had a lot to say on nutrition and wellness and is very passionate about this topic.
“Exercise and eating smaller more frequent meals are also proven ways to speed up your metabolism, which will cause you to burn more calories, thus losing weight. Do not starve yourself! That is the worst option ever! Instead, cut back on calories, but try not to get below 1000 in a day.Your body still has to have energy and nutrients to function properly.”