Sunday, 14 August 2011

Dead-end dieting

Let's face it, most people have at some point have been on a "diet" of some kind, and if you're one of the few that hasn't i guarantee you know someone who has. Green food, liquid food, less food, detox food......this list of fad diets could go on and on and on and.....

The number of long-term success stories though, that's a massively smaller list (less than a fifth of you that go on a diet will keep the weight off). Now, I know that this isn't the case for everyone general; person x will go on one of the aforementioned diets. They may or may not have some success (based only on pounds lost) to start with. This success will start to slow down...person x puts all those lost pounds back on and the cycle might start again on the same or a "new", "different", "guarenteed to work" diet, with similar results.

There is only one way to lose weight; use more energy than you take in. It's that simple.
Dieting is one of the two ways this can happen. Exercising is the other. I have no idea why but, in my experience, most people's will start diet with little or no thought to exercise when they want to lose weight. I want to explain why this is a huge mistake.

First, all that intial weight loss you might see from restricting how much you eat? That's mostly water that you've lost. It only takes a week to lose the majority of it and then you lose less and less. So, after youv'e bring rung out like a sponge, you lose fat, good times, but you also lose muscle, bad times. Muscle is always slightly tense and so is always using energy. If you lose your muscle, you'll start to use less enrgy and so lose less fat.

Secondly, dieting reduces your metabolism. Your metabolism is the amount of energy that, if you sat there all day and did nothing, yourbody uses to keep you alive.

So... dieting....put less energy in....lose some water....keep dieting....have less muscle and lower metabolism....less energy going in but less going out. Kind of defeats the point of dieting doesn't it?

Ideally, you want to be losing fat whilst keeping, or even slightly increasing, your muscle (you don't have to end up with muscles like arnold schwarzeneggerand). The way to do this? Dieting AND exercising. They will both help you lose and exercising will help you keep all that fat burning muscle.

I hope this has been easy enough to follow and if you've made it all the way down to here, thanks very much. Next time i'll talk a bit about exercising.
Until next time.....

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