Ever since thin became a trend, people all over the world have become obsessed about weight loss. Since the 1980s when running became a worldwide craze and exercise video tapes were bestsellers, people have craved for more effective yet also easier ways to lose weight.

Doctors from the US to Singapore added to the general clamor when they pointed out that obesity rates were increasing worldwide, and that this has now reached epidemic proportions. This wasn’t just about looking good anymore. It was also a crucial health issue, because obesity led to a whole host of debilitating and even fatal medical conditions.

Now with the Internet, rumors of new diets and nutrition plans, miracle weight loss pills, and the latest workout fads spread quickly all over the world. The Internet has also made it easy for people to hawk their “surefire guaranteed” weight loss drugs, and they’ve spread the word about new diets that may or may not be all that healthy.

And it’s the same thing with workouts as well. People are selling various weight loss supplements and equipment, while trying to promote “revolutionary” workouts that will “surely” burn you fat.

It can get a bit overwhelming. So what are you supposed to do about all this? How do you go about choosing the right nutrition plan and workout program that can help you lose weight?

Actually, there’s a tested method you can follow:

  1. Listen to Experts. And by experts we mean your doctor. Your doctor has the scientific training and knowledge to give you pointers on what to do, and that’s not always the case with the people you see on TV. What’s more, your doctor knows about your health, so a plan can be developed that can work for you. If you have to talk to just one person, then your doctor is that one. Every responsible website that tries to sell you a pill, a diet, a workout plan or personal training service will make it a point to tell you to talk first with your doctor.

The other experts you may also want to consult are a nutritionist and a certified personal trainer. These experts must be certified in some way, and every developed country from Singapore to the US has certified personnel for these things.

  1. Ask for recommendations. The Internet is also full of recommendations, but then again you don’t know which endorsements are real and which ones are paid for. Advertisements, whether on TV or on the Internet, are all the same. They won’t give you the complete picture.

So what you need to do is to talk to people you trust. Start with those you know who have actually lost weight or are successful in maintaining their figure. Ask them what they do and what they eat. Take pointers, and if possible write down what you hear. Ask several people, and take note of the exercises and food items they have in common. Some things may work out for one person, but if something is working for several people then there’s a greater chance that it will work for you too.

  1. Do your Own Research. Once you have some input from the health and fitness experts, do some research. Google must become your friend. Look for reputable websites such as news publications and scientific journals. Check out the credentials of the writers and of the experts quoted in weight loss articles. You can also check out forum posts as well.

Then weigh the evidence for yourself. Make sure that what you are contemplating on buying what works for you. If you’re a guy from Singapore, for example, it doesn’t make sense to get something designed for women in the US.

  1. Do Trial Runs. Now that you have settled on a particular workout program, a home gym, a diet plan or nutritional supplement, do a trial run. In the first few weeks, check yourself for adverse reactions or unusual difficulties. It may be too strenuous for you, so don’t commit to a year’s worth of special foods, supplements or workout classes. Before you buy an expensive piece of workout equipment, try it out in a gym first.

Remember, you are not looking for the most popular or the most effective weight loss method in the world. You are only looking for something that works best for you.

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