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What is the best way for a teenage girl to lose weight?

By Anonymous April 21, 2009 - 8:18pm
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Hi. I am sixteen years old and I'm concerned about my weight. I refuse to call myself fat, because I do not believe that would benefit me in any way. I am overweight and I know it is because of my diet. I am a very active girl and people tend to tell me most of my weight is muscle. Which some of it is, but I do not want the rest of it. I want to lose weight and go on a diet, it is just that I have trouble getting started. I would like to learn more about lunches I could make myself, and alternative foods I could eat. I exercise often, now the next step is dieting and I just need some help getting started.

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EmpowHER Guest

i have that same problem but i also feel like i am being neglected from my skinner friends and some of the guys i really want to lose the weight but it is hard to started. I hope you lose weight and i hope i do too good luck everyone

January 5, 2010 - 6:11pm

May I ask if any of your exercise includes strength training to balance your aerobic/cardio activity?

Diet alone is not enough. As already suggested, you need a good balance in your diet. Eliminating refined sugars and flours, sources of "empty calories," will help. We have a HerWriter who is a personal trainer, and who, I'm sure would be able to suggest a good balance of aerobic and anaerobic exercise that could help you burn fat and calories more efficiently. Check out his profile and articles here: Mark Dilworth

August 14, 2009 - 5:12pm
EmpowHER Guest

Eat tuna fish light mayo and a 8 0z glass of white graprfruit juice for lunch and dinner for 2wks

August 14, 2009 - 4:59pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Anonymous)

does this work...about how much wieght will i lose

October 5, 2009 - 7:32pm

Hi, Anon. You ask great questions, and you have a great attitude!! I just want to congratulate you for having the smart point of view that you do. You are right: Calling ourselves anything negative doesn't serve any purpose (except to make us feel even worse!). But wanting to do something about extra pounds that you don't want to carry around any longer is wonderful.

Portion control is probably the most important thing you can do on your own, especially if you're not in charge of the weekly shopping list! We get a really oversize view of what portions should be when we eat out, and that can set us up for extra pounds. Fast-food meals are supersized at the drive-thru windows; plates of pasta at restaurants have about four actual portions to one order; and the biggest soda drinks at convenience stores have gone from 32 to 44 to 64 ounces. The overall effect is to make us feel like even a Medium is a good choice -- when truly, it still carries way too many calories.

Weight Watchers' online site has tons of recipes that you can use without belonging to the site or paying anything. You can search on anything -- sandwiches, lunch, wraps, for instance -- and recipes will come up for you:


You can also click on their "Eating Out" link for tips when you're away from home:


Cooking Light also has a lot of recipes (and they often make over traditional versions of recipes so they are more healthful and less fattening):


One of the important things about losing weight is the environment you're in. It's hard to eat veggies and a salad if everyone in the family wants a cheesy casserole, for example. Or to have a grilled chicken sandwich when your friends are having cheeseburgers and fries. So realize going in that you have to plan for those times when something is trying to throw you off track. You can throw low-fat granola bars in your backpack for when you need a snack, and double up on things like baby carrots, grape tomatoes, yogurt or low-cal pudding. Pretzels or animal crackers are good for the munchies -- buy them in single-serving bags so you will find it easier to just finish one. Low-cal popsicles or ice-cream bars are perfect treats, and they keep you from feeling deprived. (Feeling deprived is often what makes a weight-loss plan fail.)

Here are some Shape readers' favorite low-cal snacks:


Think about smoothies (easy for the morning, you can get some protein and some fruit all at once), wraps (a turkey wrap with mustard, low-fat cheese and lots of veggies can be really satisfying), and vegetarian options (a veggie burger has many fewer calories than a regular burger, and can be just as satisfying). And find a couple of filling things (maybe bananas, for instance, or soup-to-go) that you know give you an edge on a busy school day.

Will any of this work for your lifestyle? Does it sound possible for you?

April 22, 2009 - 9:57am

Can I ask what your current weight and height are?

We can provide you with some great healthy, filling and low-calorie lunches that you can make yourself, as well as alternative foods you can eat.

I think most people would not recommend "dieting", as that doesn't really work. You are on the right track, though, in trying to figure out what foods you can make for yourself. Would you be taking your lunches to school, and do you have access to a refrigerator, or does the meal need to be OK in a locker or classroom for several hours?

I'll write back later (and I'm sure you will receive more responses), but the best way to eat in a healthy manner, and feel full, is to eat fiber-rich foods which are fruits and vegetables. Are you eating the recommended 5 servings of produce every day? There are so many great options that taste great, are quick and easy to prepare. Another "trick" to eating healthy and feeling satisfied is to pair a protein and carb, and there are so many options to do this: beans and brown rice, hard-boiled egg and crackers, hummus and pita chips, peanut butter, crackers and apple, cheese and whole grain crackers, and more. Laslty, healthy fats can help keep you feeling full, and are great for your body. This can include a handful of nuts, or avocado on a turkey sandwich.

Do you do the grocery shopping in your household, or are you able to influence the shopping list?

April 21, 2009 - 9:03pm
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