We all want it, we all dream of it. Let's face it: weight loss is one of the highest and noblest ideals of modern men and women. With a lot of tasty food within easy reach and with a lifestyle split between the office chair and the home couch, putting on weight has never been easier. However, beauty standards have changed since the days of Rubens, a painter famous for his penchant for beautiful buxom ladies. Today's ideal of beauty tends to borrow some of the trails of Siamese cats; the skinny body and the intense look. And so, many people voluntarily subject them to hard diets hoping to shed some of those pounds separating them from beauty standards.
One of the most important parts of a successful weight loss effort is to set a realistic goal. A target weight that is either too high nor too low. Setting the goal too high is among the biggest mistakes overweight people make. Every diet has a different pace and this pace is modified still ahead by the metabolism and genetic makeup of each individual. This means that not all diets will help one shed pounds at the same rate and that not all people following the same diet would lose weight in the same way. Setting the goal too high opens the door to disappointment, loss of motivation and failure when the target weight proves to be still far away after weeks of restrictive dieting.
Setting the goal too low is also a bad idea. If the diet is not a true test of willpower then it's all for nothing. A lax diet that features all sorts of fears can hardly be called a diet and losing four pounds in four months is hardly a challenge or an achievement. A danger that many occasional diets ignore is the response of their own bodies to diets. The body learns to see diets as periods of low consumption and makes it harder to shed the fat it sees as critical for survival. Frequent and half-hearted diets are likely to trigger this response sooner.
One last advice for all people interested in diets is: take care. Health care experts agree that the maximum weight lost in a week's time should stay around 1 pound (half a kilogram). This is a realistic target for most people and a safe one, too. Losing weight too fast could mean that the body is not getting all the minerals and nutrients it's supposed to get and will result in too few energy being available for the internal organs. Dieting or not, one should always watch the intake to make sure one is not overeating nor starving oneself.