Many overweight people have lost dozens of pounds during their lifetime. Unfortunately, it is usually the same ten pounds over and over again! If you are serious about long-term weight loss to improve your health, you need to understand the principles of natural weight loss.

If you are overweight and have tried every diet going, you will already be frustrated by the fact that dieting is not as simple as calories in, calories out. You will have heard people boast that they lost x pounds last week, and they binged on ice cream and pizza. Meanwhile you stuck rigidly to the diet sheet, no cheating, and the scales did not even budge half a pound. There are number of issues that need to be addressed before that stubborn fat can be shed forever.

Food and Nutrients
Starving does not work; the body simply slows right down to preserve what it sees as a famine ahead when it may need all the fat it can preserve. Instead, outwit your body's natural inclination to hold onto its layer of fat by substituting one food for another. Eat an average portion three times a day consisting of whole, natural foods. Fruits and vegetables, especially eaten raw, along with plant-based proteins such as legumes and nuts should be the bulk of your new diet for natural weight loss.

For drinks, think water: mineral water, filtered spring water and, when you need a change, use herbal teas to flavor water, drinking it hot or cold. Green tea is excellent for flushing toxins through the body.

Address Emotional Eating
We often look for food as a comfort or a reward when we feel low or need a treat. Emotional eating and dieting are not compatible, so address those habits that probably go back to childhood by seeking a diet partner. Support from someone who is also on a diet will have a huge impact on your success or lack of it. Share recipes, weight loss targets and new discoveries, even by email, and gain new determination and freedom from using food as a crutch.

Restorative Sleep
Logic tells you that working late should burn more calories than lying in bed for eight hours or more, but in the complex issues of dieting, the opposite is actually the case. It is only when you give yourself 6-8 hours of sleep to counter the stress of the day that your body begins to feel it is safe, emotionally and physically, so that it can shed its protective padding. High stress living means our adrenal glands are working overtime in fight-or-flight mode with adrenalin and cortisol hormones running high. Far from burning off calories, our bodies are in preparation for a crisis.

When you combine healthy food and drink with exercise and restorative sleep, natural weight loss will certainly follow.