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Losing Weight with Housework

Whitney | September 27th, 2012

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A recent study by Discovery Channel found that housework not only offers mental benefits to many, but also may be one of the best ways to lose weight. Those simple tasks like vacuuming, cleaning laundry and washing dishes burn a notable number of calories – when you add them all up, they become a workout all by themselves.

If you want to learn how to lose weight without spending hours at the gym, then try putting a good spit-and-polish on your abode.

Calorie Count Shows Housework One of Best Ways to Lose Weight

The number of calories burned in an afternoon of housework varies, based on the type of housework done and the weight of the person doing the cleaning. For example, a 125-pound person can burn up to 128 calories in one hour of ironing, and 255 calories after an hour of mopping floors.

By the same token, a 185-pound individual burns around 189 calories ironing and 377 calories mopping for the same amount of time. A 160-pound homeowner can burn more than 700 calories after four hours of working to get their home spic and span.

While these numbers may not quite compare to what you can burn in a vigorous workout (a 180-pound runner can burn more than 650 calories in one hour running 12-minute miles), it can be one of the best ways to lose weight when incorporated into a complete diet and exercise program.

Lifestyle changes that incorporate daily physical activity are recommended by physicians, including the team at The Center for Medical Weight Loss. Dr. Michael Kaplan, founder and chief medical office for the Center, recommends at least 20-30 minutes of physical activity every day.

“Every little bit of activity helps,” Dr. Kaplan says.

Easy Ways to Lose Weight

The Center for Medical Weight Loss advises that the best weight loss program combines a low-calorie diet, daily exercise (including physical activities like housework), and personalized counseling to keep dieters motivated and equipped to reach their goals.

The team breaks the weight loss process down into three basic phases: the “Quick Start” phase, which encompasses a customized, physician-guided weight loss program; the “Transition” phase, which involves continued weight loss at a steady and sustainable rate; and the “Maintenance” phase, for dieters who have reached their weight loss goals and want to maintain them over the long term. Thousands who have followed the program have been able to lose weight quickly and successfully.

Calories burned through household chores are helpful at any of these stages. However, a clean house alone won’t help you reach your weight loss goals. A physician-directed approach, like the programs offered through The Center for Medical Weight Loss, teach you how to lose weight and keep it off over the long term.

There are currently around 450 centers nationwide to help you reach your weight loss goals. Enter your digits into the zip code box at the right to see if there is a center near you. Introductory offers are available at select locations.