Losing one to two pounds per week is a healthy goal for those with a BMI of 25 or over. Losing too much weight too fast through fad and crash dieting can be harmful to your health. Losing weight through lifestyle changes of healthy eating and activity often proves to be more sustainable. Click here for more information on the rules.

People with a BMI of 25 or greater who are interested in participating in the 6 lbs. in 6 weeks challenge can start by doing their initial weigh in at any of the following locations:

  • Bolivar Drug (Formerly Medicine Shoppe),
  • The Cardiac Rehabilitation Department at CMH (enter at the community room entrance at the hospital),
  • The Southside Medical Clinic at CMH (connected to Stephens Pharmacy),
  • Polk County Health Center, and
  • The Roy Blunt YMCA in Bolivar.

The initial weigh in should be done any time during the week of January 7th. Someone at each site will take down the information and do the tracking for the participants so it is important to go back to the same weigh-in site each week to record your progress.

Provided here are 8 easy ways to start toward the goal of 6 lbs. in six weeks:

Lose weight without going on a diet? It's not too good to be true. You don't have to follow a strict diet to get the ball rolling; making these easy but effective changes really can help you lose weight.

  1. Learn to Read Labels. To lose weight it is essential to pay attention to food labels. Counting calories is impossible without this skill. You should know how to find a food's caloric content and its serving size. Comparing labels among different foods and beverages is crucial for making the healthier choices required to lose weight.
  2. Snack Smart. You can help prevent overeating and maintain blood sugar levels by eating something about every three hours. Geting too hungry will backfire on your efforts to eat healthy and practice portion control. Aim for a healthful, satisfying snack, such as an apple and some reduced-fat cheddar cheese. Eating more may seem counterintuitive, but smart snacking will help you lose weight.
  3. Eat More Greens and Produce. Whole grains and fruits and veggies do more than provide nutrients that improve your health and reduce disease-risk; they can also help you lose weight. They're naturally low in calories, so you can eat more of them and have less room in your diet for less-than-healthful foods. Plus, the fiber in whole-grain foods and produce will help you feel fuller longer (which helps you control portions and avoid overeating) and as a result, lose weight.
  4. Eat Enough, Often Enough. One of the worst ways to lose weight? Meal skipping. Many people think skipping meals is a great way to cut calories, but in the end, they fail to lose weight. You'll be more likely to overeat or even binge (when you finally do eat) if you do not eat regular meals. Plus your body may go into "starvation mode" if don't eat enough, causing you to maintain (or even gain) rather than lose weight!
  5. Drink Plenty of Water. Water helps you lose weight in several ways: If you tend to have a problem with "water weight," drinking more water can help alleviate bloating. Replacing high-cal drinks such as soda with water cuts hundreds of calories. You shouldn't wait until you're feeling thirsty to drink water; thirst can be mistaken for hunger, causing you to overeat. Proper hydration improves your sense of well-being, which will keep up your motivation to lose weight.
  6. Get Moving. It is virtually impossible to lose weight and keep it off without exercising regularly. Start out today by taking a brisk walk or riding a bike. Work your way up from 10 minutes to 30-40 minutes a day, most days a week, and you could reap health benefits and weight loss results in a matter of weeks. Plus, exercise boosts your metabolism, making it even easier to lose weight.
  7. Practice Portion Control. Measuring food may seem like a drudgery, but it will prove invaluable in your efforts to lose weight. Start out by comparing a measured standard serving of foods to your typical helping. You may find you usually consume two or even three times the recommended serving. In time you will reprogram your brain to eyeball portion sizes, a key skill for losing weight.
  8. Write it Down. What's the first thing I think anyone who wants to lose weight should do? Keep a food diary. All you have to do is jot down what, when, and how much you eat in a notebook, or you can do it online at a Web site like About.com's Calorie Count. A food diary will give you a clear picture of your current eating habits so you can identify the changes you need to make to lose weight.

From Jennifer R. Scott, former About.com Guide
Updated February 28, 2011
About.com Health's Disease and Condition content is reviewed by our
Medical Review Board  


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