Lose Weight Safely

If You're Overweight, Slim Down for Better Health
Overweight people have an increased risk of high blood pressure, heart disease and other illnesses.
Losing weight reduces the risk.

Ask Your Doctor About Sensible Goals
Your doctor or other health worker can help you set sensible goals based on a proper weight for your height, build and age and your current health.

Exercise 30 Minutes
Do at least 30 minutes of exercise, like brisk walking, most days of the week. You may have to build up to that based on doctor's recommendations. Ensure you do a proper warm-up for about 5 minutes before exercising, and a 5-minute cool down and stretching after exercising to avoid injury. Stretching cold muscles might cause injury.

Eat Less Fat and Sugar

This will help you cut calories. Fried foods and fatty desserts can quickly use up a day's calories. And these foods may not provide the other nutrients you need.

Eat a Wide Variety of Foods

Variety in the diet helps you get all the vitamins and other nutrients you need.

Watch Out for Promises of Quick and Easy Weight Loss

Fad diets aren't good because they often call for too much or too little of one type of food. As a result, you may not get important nutrients you need daily. Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably isn't true.

What About Diet Pills?

Diet pills you buy without a prescription won't make a big difference in how much you lose each week or how long you keep the weight off. If you do use them, read the label carefully. Because of possible side
effects, like high blood pressure, never take more than the listed dose. Also, be careful about taking cough or cold medicines with diet pills you buy without a prescription. These medicines may contain the same drug used in diet pills, or a similar drug with the same effects. If you take both products together, you may get too much of the same type of drug. This can hurt you.

For More Information

If you have questions, call the Food and Drug Administration's toll-free number: 1-888-INFO-FDA (1-888-463-6332) or look online at www.fda.gov.

-- Information courtesy of the Food and Drug Administration