If you want to lose weight, your first step may be to consult the Internet. If you Google “weight loss,” about one billion results pop up. With so many informative articles and videos, it’s hard to separate fact and fiction. Here are some things you may have heard about weight loss that are proven to be untrue.
Myth 1: “Juice Cleanses Are Ideal For Weight Loss.”
Why it’s False:
The primary aim of these “juice cleanses” are for detoxification. However, your liver already does the detoxing for you. The whole function of the liver is to flush out harmful toxins and chemicals in your body.
Another pitfall of juice cleanses is constant hunger. For instance, instead of your usual breakfast, you start your day with juice. You are guaranteed to feel hungry by the time lunch rolls around because there’s no fiber keeping you full.
This is because even though fruit and vegetable blends are full of vitamins and nutrients, they contain little to no fiber. Because these foods contain few calories, you will be in a calorie deficit, but you might not be getting enough calories. Additionally, juices lack key macronutrients like protein and fat.
Although juice cleanses may help you drop a few pounds since you’re essentially on a strict diet of fruits and vegetables, it is unsustainable. Most of the weight that is loss is just water weight and will be regained once you switch back to solid foods.
While drinking a green juice is certainly healthy, it is not a meal replacement. You will be depriving your body of essential nutrients until you resume a normal diet, in which you’ll most likely gain the weight back. The chances of over-eating once the cleanse ends is high since you’ve been so deprived. Save a juice in place of a salad or snack, not dinner.
Myth 2: “I Have To Cut Out Certain Foods From My Diet.”
Why it’s False:
While some foods are certainly better for weight loss than others, no diet should exclude a certain food entirely. It’s called a balanced diet for a reason. You want to balance healthy foods with a few treats not only for a healthy lifestyle but also for your sanity.
Some dieticians recommend an 80-20 rule. This means eighty percent of the food you eat should be nutritionally dense, such as whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and lean meats. The other twenty percent is reserved for dessert, alcohol, and other indulgences. Using this rule promotes a balanced diet for weight loss in particular since you want to cut back on sugary food.
Additionally, if you try going cold turkey (food pun intended) on a certain food, you’re setting yourself up for failure because it leads to cravings. If you really want to cut back on food, slowly wean yourself off it. Say you want to cut back on potato chips; limit yourself to half or one serving a few days a week.
However, it’s okay to have a serving of potato chips every once in a while. If there’s a BBQ and you can’t resist reaching for the chip bowl, don’t get frustrated. Figure today you’ll have chips and tomorrow you’ll have carrot sticks. Life is about moderation, not exclusion.
Myth 3: “Cardio Is The Best For Losing Weight.”
Why it’s False:
Although cardiovascular exercise possesses many benefits and is a sure way to burn calories, it should not rule out other types of fitness. Strictly running on the treadmill will work up a sweat, but you will become bored after doing it every day. Your body will also get used to the exercise and plateau. Variety is essential for fitness, especially in weight-loss.
If you need to give your body a cardiovascular challenge, try high-intensity interval training (HIIT). This entails doing short bursts of exercise along with short periods of rest. Combined with getting your heart rate up, HIIT improves stamina and endurance, and you can utilize different exercises for a total body workout. A popular rendition of this is called Tabata, which involves twenty seconds of intense activity and ten seconds of rest.
In fact, strength training might be a better option than cardio. Bodybuilders have a low body fat percentage due to all their muscle because muscle burns fat. Strength training is not only good for weight loss, but for bone health and body mechanics. Start with a set of dumbbells that you don’t struggle to lift, yet don’t feel feather-light either, and look up some simple exercises.
Myth 4: “I Need To Do A Lot Of Ab Exercises For A Six-Pack.”
Why it’s False:
Spot training simply doesn’t work. You can do as many ab-workouts as you like, but you’re only strengthening the muscles of your abdominals. To reveal that six-pack, you need to lose belly fat, which is accomplished by both nutrition and exercise.
Many fitness gurus say abs are made in the kitchen. Certain foods make you obtain belly fat, and certain foods help reduce it. To center your meals on losing belly fat, limit your carbohydrates and alcohol and up your protein and (healthy) fat intake.
Crunches mostly work your back as opposed to your core. Many people perform crunches and sit-ups incorrectly, which won’t strengthen anything, but rather increase the risk of injury. The best exercise for is a plank, which works every part of your abdominals. Get into a push-up position and hold for thirty seconds to a minute. If this feels too hard, put your knees on the ground; if this feels too easy, go onto your elbows.
Don’t believe everything you read about weight loss. If you really want to make a lifestyle change, it’s important to know what information is reliable and what information is ingenuine. As always, consult your doctor, who can suggest a registered dietician or a personal trainer who can give you accurate information about safely and effectively losing weight. You want to be both prepared and knowledgeable as possible on your weight-loss journey to a stronger, fitter, and healthier you.