It's easy to get answers about health and nutrition! Just send your question by email to [email protected] and Dr. Harlan will respond to selected questions of general interest. Answers will be posted in the Ask Dr. Gourmet newsletter (sign up now!) and archived in the Ask Dr. Gourmet section of the website.

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Ask Dr. Gourmet

What is a healthy weekly weight loss?

How much weight should you lose doing it healthy each week? I was hoping maybe you could give me a few hints as to what I should be looking for and what to avoid.

Dr. Gourmet Says...

Feet on a scale that does not show numbers but instead reads, 'help!'

The best research that we have says to lose about one pound per week on average. Losing weight much faster increases the likelihood of long term failure by rebound weight gain.

Often when folks are getting started they will lose more weight in the first few weeks, but then it will slow down. The key is to find the calorie balance over time where you are taking in fewer calories as well as burning more through exercise so that you lose between about 1/2 pound and one pound per week. Take it slow and be patient and you'll lose the weight - and keep it off.

Thanks for writing,

Timothy S. Harlan, MD, FACP, CCMS
Dr. Gourmet