It’s no secret to the world that Oprah has battled the bulge for most of her adult life. She’s always been very candid and up front about it. We’ve also shared in her triumphs and sympathized with her when she’s put weight back on again. And now we applaud her for what she insists is the last time she’ll be taking the on / off / on again weight loss ride. We were interested to hear what’s different about this last time and she didn’t disappoint.
She signed up with Weight Watchers around 2 years ago and this, it appears, has made all the difference in the world. The program she follows allows her to eat what she likes, so long as she remains within the allowed number of points each day.
The system allocated points to each item of food depending on their sugar, caloric, saturated fat and protein content. Most fruit and vegetables for example are 0, as is water, so you can eat, and drink, as much of those as you like. A glass of wine on the other hand is 4 points. Bread is another high scorer but if you plan your meals carefully, you can continue to enjoy the food you love and still lose weight.
This is the part that Oprah really loves. A self confessed bread addict, she has struggled with programs in the past that forced her to cut this much loved item out of her diet. And, as with exercise, if you don’t truly love and enjoy what you’re doing, your chances of failing are much higher.
Oprah also confesses that the whole ‘points juggling’ thing is a challenge she really enjoys. So if she wants to lash out big time on some sinfully rich food, or drink 3 glasses of wine at dinner, she simply rearranges her other meals to compensate points wise. And so long as she doesn’t eat more than 30 points total in a day, she still loses weight. What’s not to love about that type of diet! She also makes sure she takes at least 10,000 steps every day.
What does Oprah eat in a day? Her breakfast is generally 6 to 7 points and includes her favourite – bread. Toasted with a topping of tomato, an egg, a slice of turkey and an eighth of an avocado. She has chai tea instead of coffee.
For lunch it’s another of her favourites – soup with plenty of 0-point salads and a single teaspoon of oil. Total points 6 to 7 all up. During the day she’ll allow herself 3 points worth of snacks. Usually it’s popcorn, a hard pretzel or 11 chips. Then on to dinner and this is where Oprah often ‘lashes’ out with a glass or two of wine or a cocktail at around 4 points per glass. But the rest of the meal is generally a source of protein like fish with some vegetables and a starch to bring the meal total up to 13 to 15 points.
Oh, and as for weight loss. Well she tells us she’s lost 42 and a half pounds since starting this diet – healthily and happily. Does she also take any supplements? It doesn’t sound like it but what would she take if she did?
So what are these weight loss products
leading to many stunning celebrity transformations?
If you watch TV or read the news, you’ve possibly seen or heard about a celebrity weight loss supplement touted as the “secret”, and absolutely safe (because it's natural!) alternative. Well, today it’s a secret no longer because we’re here to tell you all about it.
A very real and significant concern when losing weight is how you'll look. You could end up with sags and bags, or you could end up lean and buff. If your body shrinks in size as you lose weight without the skin area also "shrinking," you could end up with loose skin hanging around your upper arms, waist, stomach, and other areas. By the time you attain your ideal size, the only solution for tightening up your skin is plastic surgery.
Avoid Weight-Loss Sagging
You can avoid sagging skin by starting strength training now and continue throughout your weight-loss program and beyond as you maintain your new size. That way, your skin will shrink along with the rest of you. By the time you attain your ideal size, new people you meet will have no idea that you were ever overweight. Why? Because your skin will fit your body. Do this with strength training.
Stamina, Energy, and Strength Training
You want quick results in losing weight, and you can achieve them with strength training. After only three months of two hour-long strength-training sessions a week, your body will become smaller. Your waist will be smaller, as will your upper arms, and your stomach will be flatter.
You only need to do two sessions of strength training a week. If you feel really ambitious, you can do three, but don't do any more than that. Strength training causes small tears in the fibers of your muscles. This is good, because as they repair on your "off" days the muscles become stronger and tighter. If you do strength training every day, your muscles won't have time to rebuild between sessions.
Strength Training Approaches
- Free weights.
Very popular, easy to use, widely available. Start with 2- to 3-pound weights and add weight as your body adapts to the weight.
- Stretch tubing.
A stretchy thin tube with handles on each end. Resembles a jump rope. You can purchase in several levels of resistance.
- Flex band.
A long, wide, stretchy band used for resistance training.
- Ankle and wrist weights.
Strap them on for resistance as you do strengthening exercises.
- Body bar.
A long, weighted bar used for resistance training. May or may not have additional removable weights on either end.
- A big inflated ball on which to do exercises. Seems innocent enough, but provides really challenging strength-training exercise.
- Magic circle.
A circular handheld ring, about 15 inches in diameter with handles across from each other. By compressing the circle with legs, arms, and other body parts, you can get quite a workout.
- Pilates classes and equipment.
An exercise method that creates long, lean, and strong muscles, plus very strong abs and terrific posture.
- Exercise machines.
Set the resistance of the machines to match your strength levels.
- Power-pump classes.
Lift weights while you keep pace with the music.
Muscle weighs more than fat. Because of this, a person with higher muscle mass could weigh more, and yet wear a smaller size. In addition to using your weight as a measure of attaining your ideal size, take into account your body fat percentage.
Having a higher body fat percentage brings with it significant health risks including diabetes, metabolic syndrome, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and autoimmune disorders.
When you have your body fat tested at a health club or at a health practitioner’s, you’ll receive a reading of body fat, water, and muscle percentages. All three add up to 100 percent. Assuming that the amount of water weight remains almost constant for each individual, the variables are body fat and muscle. The more muscle you have, the less body fat you have (and vice versa).
Here are ideal body fat percentages:
- Up to age 20: 14-21 percent
- Age 20 to 50: 17-27 percent
- Age 50+: 20-30 percent
- Up to age 20: 9-15 percent
- Age 20 to 50: 14-21 percent
- Age 50+: 19-23 percent
Understanding Body Fat
In body fat measurements, lower is usually best, but don’t go below the recommended guidelines. A person must have at least some body fat to be healthy. Fat pads internal organs such as the kidneys, and it also offers protection against cold weather. For women, the minimum recommended fat percentage is 12 percent. If a woman has less, her menstrual cycles could cease. Men must have a minimum of 5 percent to stay healthy.
Improving Your Muscles
By doing strength-training exercises for two to three hours a week, you can reduce your body fat percentage by as much as 10 percentage points within six months.
Having less body fat and more muscle gives you more energy, higher stamina, more muscle definition, and a higher metabolism. This means you’ll burn through calories faster and can eat more food without gaining weight.
Here's a list we compiled about the most stunning celebrity transformations.