Everyone gains unwanted pounds at one point in their life or another. As much fun as it is to put on the pounds, it can be quite problematic and challenging to lose it. Unfortunately, dozens of weight loss myths are circulating that make it even more difficult to lose weight. Here are 10 myths about weight loss you should not listen to:
All Carbs are Bad
All carbohydrates are not created equal, as you can see here. Complex carbohydrates provide tremendous health benefits and can help in weight loss, such as brown rice, wild rice, barley, quinoa, potatoes, corn, black beans, lentils, chickpeas, and other legumes. Try to always choose these complex carbs over refined carbohydrates. Refined carbohydrates are often stripped of all nutrients and vitamins. These food and drinks include candy, cookies, desserts, pastries, energy drinks, sugary drinks, ice cream, white rice, and white bread. While complex carbohydrates are better for you, keep in mind that all food should be consumed in moderation and as part of a well-balanced meal for the best results.
Exercise Hard and Frequently
People who follow this myth often find themselves with an injury and no progress to show for their effort. You must incorporate exercise slowly and be more active for the long term to experience success. You do not have to exercise excessively for extended periods of time. According to the Mayo Clinic, adults should have “at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity” each week. They state that you can also choose 75 minutes of vigorous or intense aerobic activity, or you can choose to combine the two options. Exercise is not a magic solution. You still have to burn more calories than you eat to be able to lose weight.
A Vegetarian or Vegan Diet Leads to Weight Loss
Just because you choose a vegan or a vegetarian lifestyle does not mean you will lose weight. Some vegetarian and vegan food items are just as notorious for incorporating sugar, salt, chemicals, and processed ingredients as any other food item. Men’s Health lists several vegan foods as being unhealthy, including tofu deli meats, frozen fake meats, vegan desserts, some non-dairy yogurts, frozen meals, veggie chips and seitan with added sugar. The same is true of many junk food items with no animal products. Most junk food, such as chips and sugary and fatty snack treats, are also vegan and vegetarian, such as potato chips, candy, fried foods and more.
Healthy Foods Break the Bank
Once you begin to make the transition to purchasing healthy foods, it may seem as though you are in for a shock with the price tags. It is important to look at the cost in a few ways. If you prepare your own meals that make several servings, you will likely save money than if you were to buy prepackaged or preprepared meals for the family or yourself. If you only cook for one or two people, make a full recipe and freeze the extra portions in individual servings for later if you do not like eat the same meal for several days in a row. You can also select more affordable fruit and vegetable options such as seasonal ingredients, non-organic, the near expiry options, choose cheaper cuts of meat and add beans and legumes to all of your dishes as they will fill you up for much less money.
Temptations are Forbidden
You do not have to deprive yourself of anything. If you have an overwhelming craving for a piece of pizza, have a piece of pizza. The key is to follow portion control. Eat a salad or a bowl of veggies before you have the pizza and eat a piece of fruit after and you will be less likely to be able to eat much more even if you try. The same is true for desserts, bread and anything else not on your healthy food list.
Drastically Reduce Calorie Consumption
If you starve yourself, your body will go into protection mode, you will not have any energy and your body works to preserve all calories and fat that does exist in the body. Basically, your body fights against your weight loss efforts if you do not eat enough calories. Most medical professionals and nutrition experts recommend that you reduce a maximum of 25 percent of your recommended daily caloric intake which should be roughly 2,000 to 2,500 calories for men and 1,600 to 2,400 for women. These figures will vary based on your age and height.
Reduced-Fat and No-Fat Labels are Healthy
Diet food items labeled as reduced fat or no fat are often just as bad, if not worse, than their full-fat counterparts. Because the fat is removed from these food items, they must replace it with something to bring back flavor, This is often done with excess amounts of sugar and salt.
Skip Meals to Lose Weight
If you skip meals, it can lead to weight gain rather than weight loss. Your body might go into protection mode as it does if you do not eat enough calories. It can also lead to negative health consequences, such as higher cholesterol, higher stress levels, and lower metabolism.
Never Eat After 6:00 P.M.
Many people refuse to eat after a certain time of night due to this myth. It is a good idea to eat several hours before you go to bed to be able to digest and metabolize your food; however, if you have to eat late, be selective about the food and the quantity you eat. Choose small portions and healthy options.
Weight-Loss Supplements are Safe
Most weight loss supplements are not monitored by the FDA. Some may be effective; however, this does not guarantee they are safe. It does not matter if it comes in the form of a pill, powder, liquid or bar, you should always speak with your doctor before you take weight loss supplements.
Achieving and maintaining a healthy weight is a struggle for nearly everyone. Try to ignore all of the myths and focus on the facts to help you in your journey. And remember, you are not alone in your effort.