Websites and magazines are full of conflicting advice about diet and weight loss. Do you need to cut out carbohydrates? Should you try to stop eating snacks of any kind? Does consuming food in the evening cause the most weight gain? Read on to discover the answers to these questions and more as you learn about the top nine myths that are stopping you from losing weight.
Myths That Are Stopping You From Losing Weight #1: All carbohydrates are bad carbohydrates:
If you want to lose weight in a way that is both healthy and effective, you need to learn how to differentiate between different types of carbohydrates. Specifically, you should try to avoid refined carbohydrates. These are most commonly found in white bread, white pasta, and white rice. However, you should feel free to eat whole grain carbohydrates, which you can get from the brown forms of the foods just mentioned. Studies on the health of people who regularly eat whole grain and wholemeal carbohydrates show that such people are generally less likely to gain unwanted weight and more likely to maintain a healthy, slim figure throughout their lives.
Myths That Are Stopping You From Losing Weight #2: You will not be able to lose enough weight without an extreme exercise regime:
It is no myth that combining a healthy diet with regular exercise is the most effective way to lose weight. However, do not confuse this with the claim that you need to exercise intensely for hours each day if you want to become slimmer. Indeed, starting a very strict and difficult exercise regime can end up hindering weight loss, as such routines are hard to stick to and many people simply abandon them (along with their diet plans). If you want to lose weight, it is much better to adopt a moderate and sustainable exercise plan. People who are a healthy weight should spend at least 150 minutes on aerobic exercise every week. If you want to lose weight, the trick is to create a calorie deficit of around 500 calories every day. Cycling, aerobics, jogging, and swimming are all excellent ways to burn plenty of calories at a fast rate. By combining such forms aerobic exercise with smaller portions of food, you will find it fairly easy to create an adequate calorie deficit every day.
Myths That Are Stopping You From Losing Weight #3: You need to cut out all snacks when you are dieting:
It is important to make distinctions between different types of snacks (in terms of both content and size). If you snack on lots of candy and fatty potato chips, you will struggle to lose weight. However, there are plenty of snacks that are good for your body, such as nuts, fruits, and vegetables. In addition, if you snack on small portions of healthy foods throughout your day then you will be less likely to overeat when you sit down to eat main meals. Studies on metabolic rate also show that eating little and often can aid weight loss by keeping your metabolism higher than average throughout the day. People who eat just two or three large portions each day tend to have a lower metabolic rate due to the long gaps between meals, and so they burn fewer calories at a slower rate.
Myths That Are Stopping You From Losing Weight #4: Foods that have a ‘reduced fat’ label will help you to lose weight:
Although some foods that are marked as containing reduced levels of fat will aid you in your quest for a slimmer body, it is important to know that there is not a strict standard in place to regulate which foods count as containing a reduced amount of fat. All reduced fat foods have less fat than their original incarnations do, but this can be a huge reduction or a reduction so small that it will barely make a difference to your attempts to lose weight. If you are tempted by a reduced fat product, make sure you carefully check the label to see just how healthy the food actually is.
Myths That Are Stopping You From Losing Weight #5: You should start using margarine if you want to shed excess pounds:
When marketing campaigns for margarine target dieters, the focus is on the claim that margarine contains less fat than better. However, it is more accurate to say that margarine contains a different kind of fat. The fact that margarine is low in saturated fat stands in its favor, as butter is rich in saturated fat that promotes weight gain and makes weight loss more difficult. Unfortunately, margarine usually contains trans fat, and some nutritional experts believe that trans fats are worse for you than saturated fats. Regular consumption of trans fats is linked to a higher risk of heart disease and obesity. If you want to lose weight, the trick is to reduce your intake of trans fats and saturated fats at the same time.
Myths That Are Stopping You From Losing Weight #6: Starvation diets are one of the best ways to lose weight:
When you starve your body, you will lose a lot of weight at a very fast rate. However, this has long-term ramifications for your ability to stay slim. During a starvation diet, your body learns that it cannot rely on having an adequate intake of calories each day, and it starts to conserve calories by dramatically slowing your metabolic rate. You won’t notice this while you are on your extreme diet, but when you return to eating normally you will realize that you gain weight more easily than before. Studies show that it can take a long time for your metabolic rate to return to normal after your body is forced to endure a starvation diet, so such diets are clearly not a good way to achieve lasting results.
Myths That Are Stopping You From Losing Weight #7: Slimming pills will help you to achieve the figure you want:
Slimming pills do help you lose weight, but they do not help you keep weight off. Once you stop taking them, it can be easy to gain weight once again. They are a temporary measure that can even be dangerous to people with certain preexisting health problems, so never start taking slimming pills without discussing the idea with your primary doctor
Myths That Are Stopping You From Losing Weight #8: Weighing yourself is counterproductive:
It is bad to weigh yourself multiple times a day, as it encourages an unhealthy obsession with your size. However, it is important to keep your weight objectively measured as you continue your diet. Being pleased with your new exercise regime can make you think that you have lost weight when you haven’t, and being overly self-conscious can make you believe you have gained weight when you have in fact lost it. Weigh yourself at least once a week, and make a note of the number so that you have a realistic perspective on your own body and are keeping track of your weight loss.
Myths That Are Stopping You From Losing Weight #9: Foods that have a ‘low fat’ label will help you to lose weight:
If a food claims that it is low in fat, then (unlike a reduced fat food) it comes with a guarantee that it has an objectively low-fat content. This is good news for your attempts to lose weight, of course, as some foods that are high in fat can cause you to gain weight. However, it is important to note that low-fat foods can be deceptive in certain ways. They often contain huge amounts of sugar to improve the bland taste that results from a lack of fat content, and so they can end up stopping you from losing weight in spite of being low in fat. When you encounter any food that claims it will help you lose weight, scrutinize the label to make sure it contains a healthily low amount of fat and an acceptably low amount of sugar.