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Cutting weight fast, healthy and safely

February 1, 2010 12:00:00 AM PST
We know the best way to lose weight safely is to take off about a pound a week through healthy eating and extra exercise. But sometimes life gets in the way and we need to get that fat off fast.Solution? Call in the experts. Here are some smart ways for fast weight loss.

"I've tried fasting, I've tried egg diets, I've tried grapefruit diets, those mono-foods diets," said Sandy Richman. Richman is a former "yo-yo dieter."

"You lose weight for a period of time and then it slowly creeps back, creeps back and then you're back where you started, sometimes even higher than when you started," said Richman.

Seven months ago she weighed 186 pounds. Today, she's at 124 with clothes on, due to working with NutriFit owner Jackie Keller

"The only way to lose weight successfully is to take a long-term mentality to it," said Keller.

Richman clearly did change her ways, yet there are times when losing fat fast is a necessity.

"Well, there's some quick and easy cheats that we've used when we're helping people get ready for a role or helping people get ready for the red carpet," said Keller.

Tom Cruise, Uma Thurman, Reese Witherspoon and more, Keller's wall of fame suggests her formula works.

"You're taking out everything processed, all sugars. You're eliminating all alcohol, you're eliminating all things that bloat you so that your body essentially shrinks its water stores," said Keller. "Which is, of course, not sustainable weight loss, nor is it healthy weight loss, but it's quick weight loss."

Bye-bye refined carbohydrates, hello lean protein and small amounts of favorable fats, with mini-meals throughout the day to keep mood and energy revving for the other fast-fix component: exercise.

"A lot of people, when they think about taking those five pound off really quick, they don't run right to the gym to do that," said Keller.

Yet the body responds to that immediately.

And if by chance you're taking a liquid approach, remember water and juice alone won't cut it. What you drink down makes a huge difference in your success.

"Make sure you're getting nutrient balance when you do those liquids," said dietitian Ashley Koff.

Just like solids, you need a balance of smart carbohydrates, protein and healthy fat. Example:

"Low-sodium soups where I do a vegetable puree," said Koff. "I might use as a base almond milk or soy milk, or I'll even make smoothies with coconut water and maybe the appropriate balance of maybe a protein powder."

And just how long can we keep this up? Both experts say, mentally, we are apt to give up before our body does.

"I think people hit the wall after two weeks," said Keller.