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Obesity and Weight Loss

             Concerns of obesity are affecting more women all the time. The most difficult aspect they have in losing weight is maintaining weight loss. This is due to the body's efforts to conserve energy during food restriction (Hill, Sparling, Shields and Heller, 1987). Weight loss is achieved through formulas or food supplements (i.e., Slim-Fast) or restricting food intake. Most obese women, those having a body mass index greater than 30, do achieve some success with noticeable amount of weight lost. However they do not realize the nature of the lost weight. Dieting with or without exercise has certain effects on fat and fat-free tissues of the body. Studies suggest that aerobic and resistance training, while dieting have certain effects on body composition and the composition of the lost weight. Most obese individuals do not realize that their goal of weight loss should be loss of fat mass while maintaining fat-free mass or lean body tissue. Numerous studies have been conducted using low calorie and very low calorie diets combined with various forms of exercise. .
             Several methods are used to regulate caloric intake while dieting. These include formula diets or monitoring food intake. Many studies use a fixed formula diet of a low caloric value to achieve a regulated diet. The range of these diets varies from a very low calorie diet (VLCD) at 400 kcal/day (Xavier Pi-Sunyer, 1992) to a low calorie diet (LCD) at 800 kcal/day (Wadden, Bartlett, Leitizia, Foster, Stunkard, and Conill, 1992). Each diet varies in the amount of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats they contain. All the studies do however, meet the recommended daily allowances of all micronutrients either within the diet formula or with the provision of multivitamin tablets ( Kreitzman, 1992). In a study by Ross, Pedwell and Rissanen (1995) total energy requirements were estimated then multiplied by a factor of 1.5 and reduced by 1000kcal/day to achieve a dieting level.

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