There is nothing more rewarding than to see the number on the scales go down. We all want to lose weight, no matter what. There are always a couple of pounds that we want to get rid of! From crash diets to increased intensity of workouts, we have all tried and tested them.
When you make your weight-loss strategies known to the outside world, it is no surprise that you get bombarded with a lot of suggestions and advices. Eat this, eat that, don’t exercise, only strength train, do only cardio and the list goes on.
One advice: just brave them all! We have compiled the top 4 myths regarding weight loss! Read on and confidently bust those myths, whenever someone mentions any one of them.
Myth 1: Losing Weight Is a Linear Process
We have all been there and done that. Before you even contemplate losing weight, get the facts right! Losing weight is not a linear process. You all know that when it comes to losing weight, it is all about the number of calories you take in, coupled with a good exercise regime. Through the basics of thermodynamics and energy, it is well known that you need to reduce your calorie-intake by 3500 to lose one pound of weight. If you reduce your calorie-intake by 500 calories everyday, you can manage to lose a pound in a week. But, this equation doesn’t hold true after you have lost maybe 10 or 20 pounds.
According to research, it has been proven that weight loss is not a linear process. The reason is that our body’s metabolic rate changes as we lose weight. Our bodies become more efficient on a low-calorie diet and requires less energy to do so. And this explains why it becomes harder to lose weight as your diet progresses and why almost everyone hits a frustrating plateau!
By knowing that you can hit a weight-loss plateau, you can set realistic goals for yourself. You can overcome this plateau, but you will need to put in extra effort for that.
Keep in mind that it is normal for your body weight to fluctuate by a few pounds during the day or during the week. It should not be a concern as it may be due to water retention, constipation, an overnight heavy meal or cyclical changes in women.
Myth 2: Carbs and Fats Make You Fat
Now carbs and fats have always born the brunt of being the criminals when it comes to weight gain. This is a total myth. For starters, you should not eliminate any food group from your diet. Your body needs them. Secondly, you can control the quality and quantity of these food groups, lose weight and reap the benefits as well. Let us take a look at these two food groups and how they are important for our bodies.
Carbohydrates are the major source of fuel for our body. They give us most of the energy for our daily needs, constitute parts of proteins and lipids, provide nutrients to the good bacteria in our gut and protect our muscles. In effect, cutting them out of your diet can wreak havoc with your regular bodily functions. Make sure to cut out processed carbs from your diet, such as those found in cakes, pastries etc. Indulge in organic whole-wheat pasta, barley, quinoa, oatmeal, whole-wheat bread, fruits and vegetables.
Body fat is stored fat. So if you want to shed fat, eat less fat! It is only logical, right? The truth is fats are just as important as carbs. If they are taken in moderation, they will not cause weight gain. Just like carbs, our bodies need fat, specifically to boost brain functions, to strengthen immunity and to improve your mood.
Taking it in moderation, and not in the form of junk food, can actually lead to weight loss. Avocadoes, nuts, olive oil, tofu and fish like salmon and mackerel are all good sources of healthy fats. Make sure you stay away from the unhealthy fats that are commonly found in cream, butter, shortening, doughnuts and processes foods such as cakes and cookies.
Myth 3: Eating Breakfast is Important
When you start a diet, the foremost advice you get is to have breakfast and to never skip it. But believe it or not, this is a myth. So is eating multiple, small meals during the day! In a recent controlled trial, men and women were weighed and some of them were asked to skip breakfast, while others were asked to have a healthy breakfast. After a period of four months, neither had an effect on their weight!
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The reason eating breakfast in the morning is related to weight loss is probably these people tend to have a more organized and healthy lifestyle than breakfast skippers.
That does not mean that you can go overboard with your breakfast. Make healthy choices and have everything in moderation. Eat when you are hungry and stop when you are full. It is a simple enough thing to do!
Myth 4: Weight Loss Diets and Supplements Work
This is one myth that needs to be nipped in the bud. Diets never work, in fact they are the best predictors for future weight gain. When you diet, there is a severe calorie restriction that interferes with regular body functions. Sure, you may see a dip in the number on the scales, but it is just water loss. You tend to regain the weight, once you are off the diet.
Going on a diet makes you irritable and cranky and increases cravings. Diets only give you temporary and short-term results, which you are not after.
Supplements are a big no-no. Most of them work through the placebo-effect. When people are hell-bent on losing weight and they are taking supplements, they become more mindful of what they eat. So they do end up losing weight.
Losing weight shouldn’t be about looking good. It should be about you being the healthiest you. Eat everything in moderation and exercise regularly!
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