Healthy teen weight loss, similar to weight loss at any age, aims at slow and steady changes to your diet and activity level. These gradual changes help you learn healthy habits to keep the weight off. Sedentary routines, busy schedules and social norms can make teen weight loss challenging. A weight loss of 30 pounds in four months allows you to take the weight off gradually and decreases your risk of obesity in adulthood. Plan your weight loss to include changes to both your diet and activity level.
Talk to your parents and doctor to ensure you need to lose weight. Teens grow at different rates, making it perfectly normal for two teenagers of the same height to have different weights. Health care professionals use growth charts that compare your weight and height to that of other teens your age to determine if you need to lose weight or not.
Commit to your weight loss plan by writing down your weight goals, scheduling your workout routine and tracking dietary changes, activity level increases and weight loss progress.
Decrease the amount of time you spend on the phone, computer, playing video games or watching television. Sedentary activities cause your body to burn very few calories when compared to moderate to vigorous activities.
Plan 60 minutes of physical activity into your schedule on most days of the week. Physical activity does not mean you have to join a sports team or spend time at the gym. Consider taking a brisk walk, rollerblading, riding your bike, shooting hoops, swimming laps or jumping rope. Invite friends to join you in your exercise sessions to increase your motivation and commitment to daily exercise. Without daily exercise, you may find it hard to lose 30 pounds in four months.
Eat at least three meals a day, starting with breakfast. Skipping breakfast may slow your metabolism, cause you to overeat later in the day and make weight loss more difficult.
Replace unhealthy snacks with healthier alternatives. Teens enjoy chips, candy, fast food and soda. Unfortunately, these foods and drinks contain a lot of calories, but very little nutrients. To lose 30 pounds in four months, select healthier snacks that contain fewer calories and more nutrients, such as low-fat dairy products, fresh fruit, 100 percent whole grain crackers or fresh vegetables.
Control the size of your portions at all snacks and meals. Teens often grab a bag of chips or order large fries and consume more calories than they realize. Limit your portion sizes by taking smaller servings, drinking a glass of water before eating, eating slower and listening to your body for hunger and fullness cues. Reducing your portion sizes alone may allow you to eliminate enough calories from your diet to lose 30 pounds in four months.
If you cannot exercise for 60 minutes straight, consider performing three to six shorter sessions of exercise, where each session lasts at least 10 minutes. Increase the duration of your workout as your fitness level improves.