Losing weight is a lot more straightforward than many would have you believe. Do not buy expensive slimming supplements, exercise DVDs or gym memberships in the belief that this alone will cause you to lose weight. There are so many products, diets and regimes on the market which exploit the desperation of those trying to lose weight by promising them a quick and easy ride. Losing weight is not easy but it can certainly be achieved without spending any money.

Do not begin a new exercise regimen expecting that it will be enough to trim your waistline. Exercise is extremely good for you and building muscle actually helps you to burn calories when you aren't even doing anything. An hour on the treadmill may make you feel like you have burnt many calories but if you then go and eat fast food, you may end up completely negating the loss of calories plus adding a few more. Always accompany exercise with strict monitoring of your diet if you honestly want to see results.

Do not ban all your favorite foods from your diet. You are not going to lose pounds by making yourself miserable and denying yourself all the foods you enjoy. Instead, start to read ingredients and become familiar with what beneficial nutrients you are consuming plus how much energy you are consuming (calories). There are many helpful resources online for calculating how many calories a person of your height and weight needs to consume to start losing weight. If you find you are not losing weight then you need to reassess what you are eating.

Do not eat till your stomach is uncomfortably full. This may take some time to  get used to. Try using a smaller plate and serve yourself a much smaller portion. You may surprise yourself when you are satisfied by that smaller portion. You will also feel less tired and sluggish after your meal.

Do not expect a "detox" or a "grapefruit diet" or any other clever no-effort fad to give you long-term results. You may starve yourself for days and lose a few pounds but I can guarantee that unless you alter what you eat day-to-day and start to exercise regularly, you will just put the weight back on.

Stay positive and believe in the power you have to change your body by yourself. Try to view your self and your body in a positive way. Do not feel defeated if things don't go to plan. Any day can be a fresh new start, it is never too late to change your life. Just remember to put in the effort, if you are expending more energy than you are eating you will lose weight. Only very few people have an actual medical reason for not losing weight, usually it is misinformation which prevents people from reaching their goals.

This page is the second in my series of "what NOT to do" articles.