When you’re looking for a weight loss program, it’s wise to look for one that will meet your needs and set you up for long-term success.
In general, look for programs that focus on steady weight loss — about 1-2 pounds a week.
While you’re choosing a program, ask these questions:
- Does the staff include qualified counselors and health professionals such as registered dietitians, doctors, and exercise physiologists?
- How limited are the food choices?
- Who sets your weight loss goal: you, or someone else?
- What percentage of people complete the program?
- What is the average weight loss among people who finish the program and at one year?
- What percentage of people have problems or side effects? What are those problems?
Is there a maintenance program to help keep the weight off once you lose it?
- Maintaining weight loss is important, so there should be a plan for this.
- What is the total cost, including any foods or supplements that are required?
- If you plan to lose more than 15 to 20 pounds, have any health problems, or take medication on a regular basis, talk to your doctor before you start any weight loss program.
If you plan to use a very-low-calorie diet, definitely see your doctor first and check in with him/her throughout your diet.