Here are 10 myths about weight loss that may help you with your weight loss plan:
Myth 1: You don’t have to count calories
Losing weight really is about calorie intake and calorie expenditure. If you take in more calories than you expend, you will gain and if you expend more calories than you take in, you will lose weight. Many weight loss programmes will tell you that you donâ??t have to count calories and the reason for this is that their programme is doing it for you. For example, Weight Watchers does this through their points systems.
Myth 2 : Don’t eat the dreaded carbohydrates
Some foods are more dense in calories i.e. they will have more calories per gram, so use in moderation .
Starchy foods such as potatoes, breads and pasta are some of the fastest burning foods and provide the body with ready to use fuel. Experts recommend that your diet includes these types of foods for fuel and should make up approximately 60% of your calorie intake. Be sure to make your bread and pastas whole wheat as this will provide a higher nutrient intake than white or processed flour foods.
Myth 3 : Avoid all fats
Some fat is needed for normal body function as your body cannot produce some essential fatty acids on its own, and it needs some help from your food intake. The healthiest fat sources will come from natural plant, fish or animal sources, preferably with little or no processing.
Foods containing Omega 3 can help speed up your metabolism but Omega 3 has many other health benefits. Where fats become bad for you are when they are processed and no longer in their natural state. These trans fats, or the ‘bad fats’ are what you want to eliminate or reduce in your diet plan.
Myth 4 : Cut out all sweets
Don’t eliminate sweets (if you have a sweet tooth) totally, but take in moderation. If you deprive yourself of certain foods that you crave, chances are you will fall into the ‘binge eating’ pitfall.
Myth 5: Don’t diet â?? just exercise
You cannot just exercise and achieve the results you’re looking for. You must monitor both the food intake and your activity level to be successful.
Myth 6: Don’t snack between meals
Experts are now saying the best method is to eat smaller, healthier meals more often (5 or 6 times a day). By eating more often, in smaller portions, you are keeping your metabolism active.
Additionally, you reduce the risk of getting ‘cravings’ because you are not letting yourself get too hungry and therefore you won’t feel the need to binge.
Myth 7: The lower my calorie intake, the faster I’ll lose weight
Although basic weight loss is about calories in and calories out, be careful not to go too low on the calorie intake. Your body’s natural instincts will take over, putting you into ‘starvation mode’. Your body will start to store the fat for future potential fuel and your metabolism will slow down to conserve the body’s energy. Make sure your calorie intake is at a healthy level to lose weight and keep your metabolism working.
Myth 8: Don’t eat late
If your late night (healthy) snack doesn’t put you over your calorie intake, then it won’t affect your weight loss.
Myth 9: Fat free = No calories
Just because something is low in fat (or zero fat) does not mean it does not contain calories. Some foods that are non-fat are higher in calories than their counterparts that have fat content. For instance, check out the label on dressings. Some of the non-fat dressings actually have more calories than those that contain fat.
Myth 10: Fad diets work
In fact they do, but only for a short time! What you are looking for is lifelong weight loss. Once you’ve lost that weight, you want to keep it off. Make sure you have a good maintenance plan so that it can become an eating style you can live with. Remember, it’s a lifestyle change â?? not a short term weight loss.