Finding it a struggle to manage your weight? Understand how you can do so and achieve your healthy weight, by learning more about a balanced diet and getting useful exercise tips to help you get started on a fitness regime
Trying to manage weight can be difficult and confusing at first, but once you learn how to get started on a proper exercise and diet programme, you will start to see big improvements in your health and weight. The key is to set realistic goals.
Adults and Older Adults should try to aim for weight loss of not more than 0.5 to 1kg per week or 10% from baseline weight.
Here are some helpful tips and advice to get you started on the right track to your ideal weight and fitness level:
1) It is recommended that adults get at least
150 minutes to 300 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity per week to see an overall improvement on health and fitness.
Examples of muscle-strengthening activities:
3) Having difficulty starting an exercise programme? We’ll provide you solutions to some of the most common barriers you may have.
Is an activity tracker necessary?
Don’t let exercise myths keep you from reaching your target weight and goal. The sooner you learn the real facts, the closer you’ll be to achieving your ideal weight.
Myth 1: Women who engage in muscle-strengthening exercises will get big muscles.
Fact: Muscle strengthening exercises is an important factor in preventing age-related muscle loss. Women should do such training to improve strength, bone health, and to tone up.
Myth 2: In order to get into shape or lose weight, I have to run or do other vigorous exercises.
Fact: Any form of aerobic exercise can help a person get the benefits of exercise. Brisk walking or moderate intensity aerobics are great ways to burn calories.
Get Fit the Techie Way
Myth 3: You need special clothes / attire in order to exercise effectively.
Fact: No special clothing is needed. Safe and effective exercise can be performed wearing comfortable sports shoes and loose-fitting everyday clothes.
Myth 4: Daily lifestyle physical activities such as taking the stairs, standing more than sitting, and taking leisurely walks don't make any difference when it comes to weight loss.
Fact: Everything counts. While daily lifestyle activities may not improve aerobic fitness, they still burn more calories than simply sitting in front of your TV or computer. Along with your regular exercise programme for weight loss, daily lifestyle activities can help enhance your weight management.
Myth 5: I can also lose weight by using vibrating machines.
Fact: To lose weight, one must do 150-300 minutes of aerobic exercise per week. There is no scientific evidence suggesting that spot reduction exercises such as vibrating machines or ab machines result in weight loss.
Myth 6: After I lose weight and I am happy with my weight loss, I can cut back on the amount of physical activity I do.
Fact: This is a common mistake made by those who are eager to lose weight.
The key to managing your weight successfully is by ensuring that the calories you consume do not exceed the calories you burn.
Go for lower calorie options
Take in fewer calories by controlling the type and amount of food and drinks you consume.
You can go for:
Swop to Wholegrains
Be it bread, rice or noodles, natural is best! The less processed your options, the more wholegrain it contains – it also helps satisfy your appetite faster, and for longer.
When prepared well (i.e. with less fat and sugar), wholegrains, fruits and vegetables are relatively lower in calories. They are also a rich source of antioxidants so you get more goodness in these foods for every mouthful of calories you consume.
Don’t fret about limiting your wholegrains to just bread and rice. Singaporeans can enjoy a wider variety of wholegrain products such as wholegrain noodles, kway teow, mun tou and biscuits.
Go for Healthier Choice Symbol (HCS) ProductsConsume more HCS products as these are generally lower in fat and sugar and hence lower in calories too.
Myth 1: Certain foods, like grapefruit, celery, or cabbage soup, can burn fat and make you lose weight.
Fact: No foods can burn fat. However, fruit and vegetables are naturally low in calories and high in fibre. Incorporating more fruits and vegetables into your diet if you’re trying to lose weight is a good strategy as they make you feel full on fewer calories.
Myth 2: I shouldn’t eat between meals when trying to lose weight.
Fact: You can eat between meals and still lose weight, as long as the total amount of calories you consume is less than the calories you use. If you choose to eat between meals, eat smaller main meals and choose healthier snack options (e.g. fresh fruits, low-fat yoghurt) to keep your total calorie intake within your allowance.
Myth 3: Skipping meals or taking meal replacements can help you lose weight.
Fact: Our body, especially the brain, requires a regular supply of glucose from food to function optimally. Stick to a regular eating schedule as missing meals may lead to impulsive snacking and overeating and may lower the rate at which the body burns energy. In the long run, such dietary habits may also lead to nutrient deficiencies.
Myth 4: 'Going vegetarian' means you are sure to lose weight and be healthier.
Fact: Vegetarians, like non-vegetarians, can still make food choices that contribute to weight gain such as eating large amounts of high-fat foods (e.g. deep-fried items) or foods with high sugar content (e.g. soft drinks). Vegetarian diets should be carefully planned to make sure they are balanced. Nutrients that non-vegetarians normally get from animal products but may be lacking in a vegetarian eating plan include iron, calcium, vitamin B12 and zinc.
Myth 5: Cut out desserts
Fact: You don’t need to cut out all sweet foods to lose weight. People who deprive themselves may end up eating more. You can treat yourself occasionally but don’t overindulge – just have a small portion of dessert to satisfy your sweet tooth.
Myth 6: Never eat at night
Fact: It doesn’t matter what time you eat; what’s important is how many calories you consume. If your total calorie intake is less than the calories you use, weight loss will happen.
Myth 7: Meal replacements can be used for weight loss
Fact: Meal replacements can be used for weight loss but only under medical supervision as there are various factors a doctor or a dietician will consider when prescribing meal replacements. They are usually prescribed for a short period as meal replacements are not a long term solution for weight management. They also lack the full complement of beneficial phytochemicals to keep our bodies healthy.
Read these next:
This article was last reviewed on
22 Nov 2023
Directory of Screening Locations
Questions on Smoking, Tobacco Use and Health
Environmental Tobacco Smoke
Screening for Colorectal Cancer
Benefits of Quitting
How Much Exercise Is Enough for a Healthier You
View More Programmes
Find out more about pre-diabetes, diabetes and how you can prevent them by making some changes to your lifestyle.
There’s a lot about e-cigarettes that many of us are unaware of – what are they exactly, and are they safe? Read on to uncover truths and myths clouding it!
Explore our suite of self-care tools and resources to help you better understand and manage your mental health.
Browse Live Healthy
In partnership with