Social Media Use in Education
How to Use Social Media to Aid Weight Loss
Weight loss can be difficult to do, especially if you're going at it alone. These days, if you need a little extra support or need new dieting ideas, you can use a variety of online resources to help. Social media outlets, like Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, can be very useful if you're trying to lose weight. Studies have showed that those people who are connected via social media have more success losing weight.Whether it's sharing your success, tracking your progress or sending out pictures of new recipes, social media can offer you a health-focused community, support and new resources to help make you more successful.
Finding Weight Loss Tools on Social Media
Find a weight loss community.One of the biggest benefits that social media has for weight loss is that it helps build a sense of community support for users. You're connected with thousands of others who are also looking to lose weight. Check out sites like Weight Loss Buddy, SparkPeople, and Diet.com, which are weight loss sites with a strong community.
Interact as regularly as you can.Although you may be a more passive social media user, you'll do better if you interact with your social media outlets more often.
- Don't only sign up for groups or friend others. Get as active as you can. That means friending others, liking pages or pictures, sharing photos, tracking your progress, commenting on other's progress, etc.
- The more active you are with the social media community, the more information, support and community you'll receive in return.
- If you're on a weight loss Facebook group and participate regularly in commenting or providing support, you're more likely to get support back from other members.
Download weight loss apps.Although many apps are not necessarily a specific social media outlet, they do have some similar qualities and many connect with social media outlets and can enhance your diet.
Sharing Your Weight Loss Journey on Social Media
Keep yourself accountable.Staying accountable during weight loss is essential. Accountability is what helps keep you on track with your weight loss plan, but also helps you maintain your weight loss long-term. Social media allows you to track yourself in a variety of ways. Social media is a great outlet to not only keep yourself accountable, but also can give you tools to stay on track.
Tweet your progress.One great social media outlet to use for your weight loss efforts is Twitter. It can be as personal or anonymous as you'd like. However, this tool is a great way to stay on track.
Visually track your progress on Instagram.Instagram is another social media outlet that can help you visually stay on track. Many times pictures are more useful and more fun compared to written updates.
- Instagram is similar to Twitter in the sense it offers a little more of a limited capability. However, instead of tweets, you upload photos with comments or captions.
- This can allow you to upload pictures of the foods you eat, the numbers on the scale, pictures of your morning run or pictures of yourself as you continually lose weight.
- Many times, seeing pictures of others as they lose weight or having to post a picture of yourself, is motivating enough to stay on track.
Adopting Healthy Habits
Exercise regularly.In addition to using social media and apps to help you lose weight, you'll also need to change your lifestyle. You can use social media to help you with lifestyle changes, too. One thing you will want to focus on is exercise. Regular and consistent exercise can help you lose weight and then support weight maintenance once you hit your goal.
- Use Pinterest to search for new exercise routines. Try searching for keywords like "Cardio routine," "30 day HIIT challenge," "Abs workout," etc. Not only will you find new exercises to incorporate into your routine, you will also find daily, weekly, or monthly fitness plans you can follow.
- Try following a motivational Facebook page like Yoga Journal Pose of the Day, which will keep things fresh by emailing you three different yoga poses every day.
- YouTube is a goldmine when it comes to exercise videos. Try searching for "Zumba dance routine" or "Cardio workout" to find thousands of exercise routines to choose from. It can also be helpful if you're not sure about a particular exercise. For instance, if you're not sure you're doing squats correctly, search for "Squats proper form" and you can watch experienced trainers demonstrate the technique.
- Include at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity cardio activities each week. This can be walking, jogging, cycling, hiking, dancing or swimming.Also include one to two days of strength training each week. This helps build lean muscle mass and can help increase you metabolism over time.
Watch your calories.If you want to lose weight, you'll need to exercise and monitor how many calories you eat each day. Cutting out a few calories and monitoring your diet will help start weight loss. Smartphone apps are great tools when it comes to counting calories, as most people have their phone on them at all times. As soon as you sit down to a meal, log your calories using an app like MyFitnessPal. This app provides you with the maximum calories you can eat each day to reach your weight loss goals. Log what you're eating into your food diary and check out chat forums for recipes and advice.
- Other popular calorie counting apps include Lose It!, FatSecret, and Cron-o-meter.
- To help get your weight down, consider watching your total calorie intake. When you cut out a healthy amount of calories, you can slowly lose weight over time. Aim to cut out about 500 calories total from your diet, which will result in about a one to two pound weight loss each week. This is a safe and sustainable rate of weight loss.
- Do not cut out more than 500 calories or eat fewer than 1,200 calories daily. This will leave you too hungry, lacking in energy and promote slower weight loss long-term.
Monitor your portion sizes.Monitoring calories is important; however, you also need to support your calorie counting by measuring out the appropriate portion sizes of the foods you eat. Dieting apps like Calorie Counter, MyPlate Calorie Tracker, and Lose It! include information on portion control. Try an app like Pertinacity, which can help you estimate portion sizes by comparing the amount of food on your plate to the size of your fist.
- When you're measuring protein, include a 3–4 oz serving at every meal. Weigh out 3–4 oz or measure out about a 1/2 cup of protein-rich foods.
- If you're serving yourself fruit, choose 1 small piece or measure out about a 1/2 cup of cut fruit.
- For vegetables, your portions should be bigger. It should be about 1 cup of vegetables or 2 cups of leafy salad greens.
- Grains also need to be measured. Weigh out about 1 oz per serving or measure out a 1/2 cup per serving.
Eat a balanced diet.Reducing your calorie intake and exercising are key to losing weight; however, if you're not eating a balanced diet, your weight loss may not be as great as you'd like. Social media is a great resource for diet plans and recipe swapping. Try searching "Nutrition" on Facebook and join a group in which community members suggest healthy recipes. Pinterest is another great resource for healthy recipes; just try searching "Healthy chicken recipes" and you'll have tons of delicious dishes to choose from.
- If you join an online weight loss community, chances are there will be tons of resources for healthy, balanced meals. The website FitDay offers online consultations with Registered Dietitian, who can help you come up with a detailed meal plan.
- A balanced diet helps provide your body with every essential nutrient it needs. Without those nutrients, you can experience fatigue, slow weight loss and nutrient deficiencies over time.
- To eat a balanced diet, start by eating something from every food group each day. That means including a source of protein, fruits, vegetables, dairy and whole grains daily.
- In addition, eat a wide variety of foods from those groups each day. Don't just eat the same foods. This will limit your intake of a variety of nutrients. Instead choose a variety of fruits, vegetables, grains and protein sources throughout the week.
Manage your stress.Another part of your lifestyle that's important to manage is your stress levels. Stress is not only frustrating to deal with but, can also make weight loss much more difficult. Using social media to connect with friends and loved ones may help reduce stress in women.
- Social media can be a great tool to keep you accountable during your weight loss efforts.
- In addition, it's a great source of community support.
- If you're not familiar with many social media outlets, start by using just one service at a time. If you master it, then try making and using other accounts.
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