8 misconceptions about weight loss

8 misconceptions about weight loss

For people trying to lose weight, it is particularly tempting to think that this can be done quickly and easily. Many methods offering shortcuts to lose weight, particularly popular, will ensure you have very fast results.

However, in most cases, these methods are not as effective as they claim. And even if they work, the effects will usually be short-lived.

Losing weight is not an exact science. There are multiple schools of thought developed by “specialists” in nutrition. Many theories will be successful and disappointed. A specialist will boast such a method, while others will oppose this idea. And so on.

The consequence is that many people who want to lose weight will hear contradictory information and will be lost as to the correct method to adopt.

Moreover, it is essential to remember that we all have different morphologies. And just because some type of diet is effective on some people, it will not be the case for everyone.

  1. Theory 1: Avoid carbohydrates
  2. Theory 2: Eat Lightened Products
  3. Theory 3: Remove the sweets
  4. Theory 4: Do not dine late
  5. Theory 5: Do not have breakfast
  6. Theory 6: Practice a lot of sport
  7. Theory 7: Water burns calories
  8. Theory 8: Adopt my friend’s diet

Theory 1: When you want to lose weight, avoid carbohydrates

This theory began to be particularly popular because of the success of the Atkins diet, which consists of avoiding carbohydrates to favor foods rich in protein such as meat, eggs or cheese. Originally, no limit was set as to the number of proteins to consume (this is no longer the case today).

Several studies on the subject have tried to determine the effectiveness of such a dietary approach. One study in particular, conducted by the New England Journal , [1] noted that although low carb diets provide quick results (3-6 months), long-term benefits (after 12 months) are not different people following a low fat diet. This finding suggests that it is more likely to gain weight after following a low carbohydrate diet .

Carbohydrates contain half the fat per gram, and are a vital source of energy and nutrition. That’s why it’s recommended that one-third of the food eaten in a day includes carbohydrates. Fiber inside carbohydrates can also help you not get hungry quickly and reduce snacking temptations.

Most of the calories found in starchy foods in the carbohydrate family come from what we add. This can be cheese added to a sandwich, sauce already ready for pasta (added sugar) and potatoes fried in oil.

To lose pounds and keep them off, fiber-rich carbohydrates such as wholemeal bread, rice or whole pasta or baked potatoes with their skin are recommended. It is also important to pay attention to what you add and consider more balanced alternatives.

Theory 2: Eating lighter versions of your food will make you lose weight

Not necessarily. Swap your favorite foods for their lighter version may seem like an easy shortcut to quickly lose weight. But in reality, the benefits will be small.

Fatty foods are appreciated because fats make foods tasty. If you remove these fats, you affect the taste. That’s why, in order to maintain a similar taste, food manufacturers increase the amount of sugar. Therefore, eating light foods is not necessarily a good idea. Another tip is to add salt. Now, most of us are already eating in excess.

Lean foods will be sold as containing at least 30% less fat than the conventional version. For example, a product with a high fat content like cheese will still have a lot of fat, even in its lighter version. In the end, it is not a low fat option.

The alternative is to control the amount of what you eat. This means that it is better to buy foods with their normal level of fat (and with all their taste), but to eat less.

If you decide to buy the lighter versions of your favorite foods, take the time to check the nutritional information and in particular to check that the reduction in fat level is not offset by added sugars.

Theory 3: Stopping all sweets is the key to losing weight

Excess consumption of sweets (foods consisting of high levels of sugars or saturated fats) can obviously promote weight loss and complicate any attempt to lose weight. But does stopping the consumption of this type of food completely enough to lose weight?

A balanced diet will consist of eating everything, but in a moderate way. Such a regime will not be called into question by the occasional consumption of sweets. This will help you stay on the long term and not give in to temptation, unlike a too strict regime.

When a person reduces the number of calories consumed, the level of leptin (a hormone that regulates hunger) decreases and that is why the feeling of hunger increases. Sometimes giving yourself a small gap can increase leptin levels and stop the feeling of hunger.

Theory 4: Dinner late at night makes you fat

The idea that dinner after 8pm can promote weight gain has been discredited by several studies. A calorie has the same value, no matter what time it is consumed.

In fact, the problem is usually what people eat at night. In general, you are less inclined to prepare your dinner and the temptation is greater to heat a frozen dish, nibble something to order a takeaway. Crisps, chocolate, ice cream or take-out foods tend to contain a greater amount of fat, sugar or both.

If you tend to eat this type of meal or snack in the evening, it is strongly recommended to change your eating habits in order to have a balanced diet.

Theory 5: Do not have breakfast is a good idea to lose weight

People having a balanced breakfast will have less difficulty managing their weight.

In addition to increasing the feeling of hunger, miss breakfast or another meal will drop the blood sugar level. This can cause fatigue and irritability. The metabolism will slow down to conserve the remaining energy.

In addition, skipping your breakfast will make you want to eat more sugar and fat dense foods later to compensate for the dishes you missed. Finally, as the metabolism will be in “energy conservation” mode, it will have to produce more effort to conserve the calories already stored in the body.

Eating at regular intervals throughout the day, in a reasonable amount and in a balanced way, can really help those affected by their weight. You will feel better and this will help you to control possible mood changes.

Theory 6: An important sport practice is the only way to lose weight

There are, of course, many health benefits to regular sports practice. However, it is extremely difficult to lose weight only by practicing a sporting activity.

The WTO recommends 150 minutes of moderate physical activity per week for a healthy adult. But to lose weight, you will need to increase this time. A study by The Royal Society of Public Health showed that 22 minutes of running burned the same number of calories as those in a bar of chocolate. 43 minutes of sport burns the caloric intake equivalent to a quarter of a large pizza . [2]

To lose weight, it will be necessary to burn more calories than those consumed. The most effective way to achieve this goal is to combine physical activity with the right diet.

Playing sports in the hope of losing weight does not have to include weightlifting or running 20 kms per week. Walking at high speed, dancing and mowing the lawn are also healthy activities.

Of course, regular, intense physical activity will burn more calories than moderate sports. But the key is that the sport gets into your routine and for someone who is not used to it, it is recommended to start at your own pace. It is therefore not advisable to have a goal that is too high.

Theory 7: Drinking water helps to lose weight.

Although the scientific world has demonstrated that water consumption can accelerate the expenditure of calories, the consequences are minimal . [3]

However, getting hydrated is vital for staying healthy and drinking water rather than sugary drinks is an effective way to avoid excessive sugar consumption.

It is also possible to confuse thirst with hunger and water can help you slow down the urge to eat. So, the next time you are tempted by a snack, drink a glass of water to pass this urge.

Theory 8: If a diet worked for one of my friends, it will work on me

As already mentioned in the text, we all have distinct morphologies , different metabolisms and a state of health more or less good. That’s why, if a diet works great for one person, it does not mean it will work for everyone. Some people have a more active lifestyle or have jobs that require more physical activity. Age and genetics are also two factors to consider.

If you want to lose weight or plan to diagnose, talk to your doctor. He will be able to discuss with you the various options that exist and can establish a plan to help you lose the pounds.

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