Nutritionists all over the world believe that there are no short cuts, or cutting edge techniques to lose weight at a faster pace or slim down overnight. Most of us have our own views and understanding of weight loss facts which we meticulously believe in and follow stringently. The key to successfully achieving a healthy and fit body is to follow a proper exercise regime, smartly balanced with a confident and nutritionally healthy diet and sound meals, on a regular basis. Let us discuss and resolve some of the most suspect diet myths and facts which, instead of supporting your pre-set weight loss programme, hold back reduction of excess weight from your body.
Eating after 8 pm is a diet don’t
Most of us believe that having dinner after 8 p.m. can lead to additional weight gain from the food consumed. This, however, is a myth. What really matters is not the time, but the kind and quantity of food that you intake. The primary reason for dietitians suggesting to enjoy an early bird special meal lies in the fact that generally people end up overeating at night, especially if they have skipped their day meal. Not taking in the right quantities of good calories, suggested for a healthy and fit body, can lead to bingeing and overeating at night.
Capitalize on the fact and include the right family of foods for ‘after 8’ grubs. Experts recommend light meals, along with a protein shake with water, berries and some fat. You can even opt for fat-free yogurt or blend whole grain cereals with skimmed milk for ice cream, or substitute your meal with baked chips and salsa dips or eat snack pack crackers, instead of cheese doodles. Remember, mindless eating, or bingeing in front of the T.V. during night time eating hours can lead to alarming weight gain levels and one should refrain from such harmful acts.
A calorie is a calorie is a calorie
All calories are not the same and do not always leave a harmful impact on the body. Calories become a menace for the body if they are taken in large quantities and not burnt off in the same ratio. One should know how to distinguish between good and bad calories, and also where to draw the line when consuming them. Bad calories are those which get digested rapidly and absorbed immediately into the blood stream, like refined simple sugars. The high levels of hyperglycemia, or blood sugar, gets preserved within the body in the form of fat. On the other hand, fiber-rich foods, termed as good calories, or complex carbohydrates help in slowing down the digestion rate and, thus, in turn, assist in controlling blood sugar levels as well. This enables the body to steal a longer time window to burn out the calories present in these good carbohydrate foods before storing the excess amount of it as fat within the body.
However, the trick is to capitalize on the fact by eating more complex carbohydrates like fruits, vegetables and whole grains and avoid simple sugars like candy, soda and other ‘white’ food items like bread, regular pasta and potatoes as far as possible. The fluctuation caused in blood sugar levels due to rapid digestion of simple carbohydrates can result in tiredness and lethargy and can even upset your appetite control regulation.
Drinking broth soups before meals helps you feel full and eat less
This is a misconception that having a bowl full of broth-based soup can ultimately make you feel full, and hence, eat less during meal time. The fact is that when we eat foods which have a high water content, it makes us feel satiated and thereby increases our sense of fullness. Although, drinking a glass full of water does not have the same impact, it gets emptied out of our stomach at a much faster pace than water which is incorporated within foods that we intake. Psychologically speaking, a plain, simple, platonic glass of pure water does not trigger any hints, via our body, to our mind, that we are full.
Capitalize on the fact by having a bowl of cream-free broth-based soup as an appetizer before meals. Even then, if you are keen to have high-calorie juices or sodas, try replacing them with water. It might not make you feel full, but it surely would save you from taking in those extra calories. Also, water helps in flushing out body toxins and carries nutrients to the cells, thereby helping in reducing skin break outs and dark circles around the eye region.
When on diet, avoid red meat at all costs
Red meat is very rich in protein and iron, and is therefore preferred by nutritionists and is recommended as being one of the best choices in a healthy balanced diet. Even when on a diet, you do not have to completely refrain from eating red meat. What’s important is to have it in the right advised quantities.
The best way to capitalize on the fact is by choosing lean cuts of meat like sirloin tip, flank steak and extra lean ground beef. Also, before consuming, make sure to trim off all visible fat from the piece. The key element is portion control and to cut down your consumption frequency to once a week or so. Most importantly, remember, when on a diet regime, the quantity of red meat that you opt to eat should not be larger than the size and thickness of your palm.
OTC weight loss products labeled ‘natural’ or ‘herbal’ are safe and effective
We have a tendency of getting carried away by over-the-counter weight loss products which are readily available and marked as being ‘herbal and natural’. It is not always true that anything and everything on offer in a health food store is healthy and good for consumption in the true sense of the word. You should not rely on the authenticity claims of a product and choose to experiment with it unless and until it has been evaluated by the FDA. Moreover, before indulging in such oral weight loss products, you should consult your physician.
Learn to capitalize on the fact that there are no short cuts to weight loss. However, there are certain FDA-approved and recommended diet pills, which are available over the counter, but these can be bought only if you have a proper written prescription from a medical practitioner. These pills block fat absorption, and when taken along with a controlled calorie diet and a proper exercise plan, can prove to be quite effective.
All grams are created equal
The biggest mistake which people make is to substitute all categories of food in terms of their weight in grams. But, fact reveals some other statistics. All grams are not created equally, a lot depends on the volume or quantity as well. The analogy behind it is that when we try to analyze and ascertain the quantum of food to be consumed in terms of grammage, they may be classified differently depending on the food group that they belong to. For example, 1 gram of protein and 1 gram of carbohydrates have 4 calories each, but if we talk about fat, 1 gram of it contains 9 calories. So, you cannot eat the same grams of fat in place of protein or carbohydrates to keep your calorie count for the day under control.
This explains why some foods have more calorie content than others of the same serving size. It even justifies and throws light on the proliferation of low fat and fat-free products. Try to limit the number of grams of fat that you have every day, in order to comfortably stay within your calorie budget.
Your body has a biologically predetermined fixed weight and all chances to alter it will fail
Most of the time we tend to blame our biological heritage for our excessive weight and broad build. Though we cannot refuse outright that there is no connection between genetic inheritance and body composition, the former does influence and play a role in the latter, but we can still control it by adapting an active lifestyle and by switching to consciously healthy eating habits.
The pre-determined fact is that if you do not change yourself, nothing can change you. It is very important to keep a check on what you eat, exercise well and eat nutritionally balanced food if you want to break away from the clutches of a biologically pre-determined body set up. There might be moments when you might reach a plateau on the way to your weight loss goal, even then, learn the trick to persevere and switch things in your favor.
Eat only when you feel hungry
This is a general approach to skipping meals and indulging in eating at erratic hours in order to make up for the day’s missed meals. In doing so, people normally end up eating more than otherwise. Very few of us are aware of the fact that consuming very few calories can give a boost to our body and trigger it to hold on to fat, thereby enabling fewer calories to burn. Hunger is a parameter to judge that your body’s metabolism is active and is working at the right pace. It is a positive sign, indicating that your body is burning off excessive calories and is operating very smoothly. On the contrary, the act of starvation, to the extent that your body starts conserving calories, is both unhealthy and unfavorable for your weight loss programme. Instead, when you feel hungry, eat smart and light food.
Capitalize on the fact by eating smaller and healthier meals at regular intervals instead of prolonged starvation and bingeing. Breakfast being the most important meal of the day, which helps in keeping your body energized throughout the day, should be eaten with great care.
If you’re not sweating while working out, you are not working hard enough
How many of us think that perspiration and weight loss are directly proportional to each other? The fact is that there is no co-relation between sweating and losing weight. Sweat signifies that your body is cooling off while working out. The mechanism of sweat varies from person to person. Also, there is no concrete evidence to judge that working out for shorter periods with greater intensity results in losing weight faster than working out for longer duration with lower intensity.
The trick is to judge what is best suited for you in terms of your lifestyle and daily schedule. Whatever regime you follow, you should stick to it and meticulously follow it. Your muscles will carry on shedding off those extra calories irrespective of the exercise pattern you involve yourself in, be it aerobic or anaerobic exercises.
There are no miracle fat burning foods
Research reveals that there is no such food which can make you burn extra calories and stored fat miraculously, be it diet foods like mustard, grapefruit, green tea or celery. These might boost your metabolism rate, but in no way can they be useful in sustaining or having an impact on your weight loss programme. As a matter of fact, consuming certain food items in large quantities can offset your body’s balance and its ability to digest, absorb and neutralize body toxins and other important and inevitable products.
Stop looking out for easy methods of cutting down your weight, no matter how tempting they might appear. The secret behind a healthy mind and body, along with maintainable weight loss, is to exercise and eat sensibly.
You’ll burn more fat if you don’t eat before workout
The biggest misconception of all time is to not eat before your exercise sessions. It is a fact that physical exercise leads to burning of glycogen or carbohydrate reserves, but once you have finished burning all your store house of fat, you start dipping into your fat stores for energy. Though it is a fact that you burn fat at a quicker pace right away when your stomach is empty, but you are likely to run out of your energy before your workout session comes to an end. You might even end up grabbing anything that you get in order to fill up your stomach and regain and refuel your lost energy.
Find foods that give you the optimum amount of energy required to work out at your best. Do not forget that calories provide energy to the body. Just as a car runs on fuel, our body runs on the level of stored energy inside it. So, it is very important to intake the right amount of energy in order to let you go on at a higher intensity for a longer period of time.