It is really simple. I’m going to tell you what I do. I am 5’7″ and range anywhere from 118-125 and rarely workout. I was a varsity athlete in college and learned all about eating healthy, best workouts, etc, which I have taken with me, but I just don’t have the time or the desire to work out much. As a result, I monitor my weight purely through caloric intake.
Don’t eat more than 1,200 calories per day. Don’t eat less than that, but don’t eat more than that. While certain foods are “healthier” than others, the ONLY thing that matters in weight loss when it comes to diet alone is your calorie intake.
For each pound of weight you lose, that means you need to eat roughly 3,000 calories less. If you eat 1,200 a day AND DON’T workout, you are burning an additional 800 calories per day since most women burn 2,000 per day. Now, if you are working out, add the number of calories you are burning during that workout… let’s say 500 to that 1,200, which means you should be eating 1,700 per day to sustain the caloric intake requirements without jeopardizing your metabolism. If you cut your caloric intake too much, your metabolism will slow down, which means the calories you need to function on a daily basis decreases and it becomes a vicious cycle.
The diets that are popular such as Weight Watchers work on this basis. Where each meal is assigned a number of points and you can eat up to xx points per day… this points system is based purely on calories.
While eating only chicken and steamed vegetables sounds like what most people would recommend (since it is low calorie and high in nutrition), if you feel like eating a donut, do it. Just make sure your intake doesn’t exceed 1,200.
Once you reach your goal weight, you can increase your caloric intake up further to where you are eating the same amount you burn each day, but to lose weight you MUST create a calorie deficiency.
Just remember, even if you binge on chicken and vegetables and eat until you can’t eat anymore during the day because you think that it is “healthy,” if you keep exceeding that caloric limit that you need to lose weight, you still won’t lose weight.