It’s safe to say that everybody has at some point, tried to lose weight, or knows somebody that has.
There are so many ‘out of this world’ diets and cleanses out there, that it can be hard to know which ones actually work, from juice cleanses, soup diets or even good old clean eating and exercising. One mention of the word – diet and suddenly everyone is an expert at offering tips and tricks that supposedly make the weight loss process quicker and less gruelling.
With all the tricks of the trade, it can be hard to decipher fact from fiction, so here’s the truth about common weight loss myths.
Carbs Make You Put on Weight
Carbohydrates, when eaten as part of a balanced diet, as a rule will not lead to weight gain. Eating more than your body needs of any kind of food will make you gain weight – it’s not so much about if you’re eating carbohydrates, but actually what kind you’re eating.
Dietitian Sian Porter says: “Carbohydrates are such a broad category and people need to know that not all carbs are the same and it is the type and quantity of carbohydrate in our diet that is important.”
There are 3 different types of carbohydrates: sugar, starch and fibre. When carbohydrates are eaten our bodies convert them into glucose, which is then used to fuel cells such as the brain and muscles.
Natural sugar is naturally found in foods such a fruits and vegetables and are made up of just one or two molecules of sugar, while the other form of sugar – synthetic, such as granulated sugar, are often added to snacks and drinks to sweeten them. These types of carbohydrates supply quick energy to the body in the form of glucose, they can work well as part of a balanced diet but alone cannot give the body the energy it needs to get along.
Starch, a more complex carbohydrate made up of many sugar units bonded together, is found in foods such as bread, rice, potatoes and pasta. The starch is then broken down into glucose which is absorbed into the bloodstream to give you energy.
Fibre, however is not digested as easily and does not get absorbed, foods such as whole-wheat pasta, wholegrain bread, pulses, fruits, nut and beans contain fibre. While they don’t get absorbed, Fibre plays a vital role in staying healthy and regularising your bowel movements. Carbs are one of the most important areas of your diet and gram for gram, contain less calories than fats.
Carbohydrates in most cases are the bodies main source of energy and while we could probably live without any sugars – it would be quite hard to eliminate carbs entirely as your body would have very little fuel to run on.
Starving yourself is the Best Way to Lose Weight
So yes, to lose weight you may need to consume less calories but as it happens, consuming too few calories, for example a crash diet, will only provide temporary result with a possibility of longer-term weight gain. The reason for this being that this kind of lifestyle is hard to maintain. With low energy levels you’re more likely to be craving high-fat and high-sugar foods to compensate for lack of glucose. You’ll also be suffering due to lack of vitamins, minerals and essential nutrients the body needs to function, which means that day-to-day activities, can become exhausting. Overall starving yourself, while it may seem a fab way to lose weight, can have detrimental effect on your health without even assuring long-term weight loss.
All Slimming Pills are Safe to Use
No not all slimming pills are safe to use, or will give the desired effects. Slimming pills promoting fast weight loss often contain diuretic ingredients such as dandelion root, watermelon, coffee or oats – causing frequent urination and resulting in slight weight loss however this is not the same as actually losing body fat as it is easily put back on. It can also be quite dangerous because this type of weight loss has potential to cause severe dehydration. The pills recommended below doesn’t contain any of the dehydrating ingredients listed above.
I’m doing these exercises to lose weight from this area
Weight loss is not localised to just one area. No exercise, supplement or diet will change this. When you lose weight you lose it from everywhere, it can often seem like you’re not losing it certain places but that’s simply because some areas, such as the stomach, may have higher concentrations of body fat and in those cases these stores of fat will be the last to go.
Your body is not one to discriminate where it pulls its energy reserves from and you’re constantly mobilising and storing fat from all over your body at all times. While hormone levels and genetics seem to play a slight part in where you lose fat from you’re actually losing it all over but results show best in the areas where you hold the least amount of fat.
There’s no need to spend time and money on an entirely crazy belly shrinking exercise routine in hopes to slim down – a standard exercise routine can be just as effective. Exercises such as jogging with dumbbells can be just as effective for an all over body workout. It may also be worth investing in a fitness tracker such as the Fitbug Orb – it’s a great way to see the progress you’re making and track your weight loss.
Snacking is the enemy
Snacking isn’t a problem when losing weight – it’s what you’re snacking on! Obviously put down the crisps and chocolate but your go-to healthy snacks might not be that far away. The need to snack is within us all, so as to maintain high energy levels between meals. MyVitamins have created an amazing little box filled with a variety of high fibre, nutritious snacks to keep you going.
Some foods speed up your metabolism
Your metabolism is the chemical processes that happen in your body to keep you alive and have your organs functioning normally. These processes need energy and it is claimed that certain foods and drinks can increase your metabolism by helping the body burn more calories and aid weight loss. Unfortunately there is very little evidence to support this theory, yet there are endless products and diets that will claim to be able to speed up the metabolism and make you lose weight. While certain foods such as green tea, caffeine, or hot chilli peppers may give you a slight boost in your metabolism it’s certainly not enough to make a difference in your weight.
“It is claimed that certain foods and drinks can boost your metabolism, including green tea, black coffee, spices and energy drinks. The evidence behind these claims is flimsy, the effect on your metabolism is marginal at best and each person will respond differently to each product.” – NHS Livewell
Looking to boost your metabolism? – Here are 10 natural foods that can boost your metabolism.
Skipping meals is a fast way to lose weight
Skipping meals seems like the easy way out take away daily doses of your largest calorie intakes and you’ll be dropping pounds like its the sales. Unfortunately skipping meals can result in tiredness and missing out on key nutrients, encouraging high calorie snacking habits. To be able to lose weight and stay that way, you must reduce calorie intake and increase the amount of calories you’re losing through exercise.
So if you’re looking to lose a few pounds or shed a load of weight then congratulations on taking your first steps. While there are many amazing and well proven methods to lose weight I think it’s safe to say nothing will ever quite beat good old healthy eating and exercise. It’s always wise to remember our list of myths debunked when you’re trying to lose weight – if you’re going to do it, do it right and do it safely.
Featured Image – Pixabay
Reference 1: Independent news
Reference 2: Healthambition.com
Reference 3: NHS livewell