Hi! Welcome to Fit, Food, and Fun Fridays! Today we’ll talk about the top 4 weight loss myths. If you go to Google and search “weight loss tips,” you will see millions of hits about quick weight loss and ways to avoid gaining weight. However, a lot of these “facts” and “studies” all over the internet lack any scientific evidence. Many of them are simply common myths and presumptions about obesity and weight loss.
These claims, many of which lack any sufficient evidence, lead people to make poor decisions about how they can best address obesity and avoid excess weight. Experts suggest investing the time to determine if a weight loss suggestion is true or not before patterning your lifestyle after it. These weight loss myths are so common and pervasive that they seem to be virtually everywhere and can actually derail your attempts to lose weight.
1. Eating Less Equals Weight Loss
Have you ever heard of “weight loss plateau?” This phenomenon happens to your body when you eat less. In a weight loss plateau, your body adjusts and weight loss stagnates when you cut your calorie intake for an extended period of time. If you keep changing your caloric intake, your body will go further into preservation mode, causing your resting metabolism to continue slowing down and become more inefficient at burning calories.
2. You Should Never Skip Breakfast
One commonly held belief that IS actually true is that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, especially for effective weight loss. Remember that in your efforts to lose weight, it is important to fuel your body. Choose healthy foods that provide protein and fiber for long-lasting energy, satiety, and calorie burning.
3. Eat the Whole Egg
When you think about diet foods, egg whites probably come to your mind. They are a rich source of complete protein and they help with weight loss. However, egg whites also lack the most important nutrients you can obtain from whole eggs. People fear eating whole eggs because the yolk contains cholesterol. But current research shows there is no need to fear the fatty acids and cholesterol in yolks because they also have the key nutrients that egg whites don’t in order to satiate your body.
4. Small Frequent Meals Reduce Hunger and Contribute to Weight Loss
This is one of the most prevailing weight loss myths circling online. Popular belief is that by eating small, frequent meals every day, you can reduce hunger and increase weight loss. However, current research found there is no difference in the weight loss or the metabolic rates of people eating three, big meals a day or those that eat small, frequent meals. In fact, they found the latter to have increased rate of systemic inflammation and endotoxins circulating the body. What is important is what and how much you eat, not necessarily when you eat it.
For long-term, sustained weight loss, do your homework and make sure that you are shaping your new lifestyle and healthy habits around solid, legitimate information.
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I really wanted to talk about this topic today because the overweight and obesity epidemic is at an all-time high! We are a fat society and it’s killing us prematurely. Not only do I truly believe that you have the power to lose weight to improve your health, but the science also agrees! You can adopt healthy lifestyle practices that improve your health and enrich your life, which can in turn improve the lives of those close to you. You have the power to break the cycle of obesity so that you can leave a legacy of health to your loved ones.
I use lifestyle medicine as the first line of treatment, before medications, to treat lifestyle-related chronic diseases. Lifestyle-related chronic diseases include diabetes, hypertension, obesity, and some cancers, just to name a few. Lifestyle practices, such as eating a whole-food plant-based diet and regular physical activity, can help you lose weight, and maybe reverse some of your chronic diseases. In certain cases, these approaches may even outperform pharmaceutical therapy. But I always tell my patients that conventional medications may be appropriate at this time to prevent catastrophic illness, but over time, you can work to make the necessary lifestyle changes to possibly reduce and/or eliminate medications. Please remember to always consult your physician for your particular needs and circumstances prior to making any decisions whatsoever.
Since weight management is very important in combatting chronic diseases, I recommend that you be mindful of your weight and its fluctuations, and that you monitor your weight AT LEAST on a weekly basis. I recommend a scale that includes a body composition monitor (*this scale cannot be used with a pacemaker or other implanted devices).
Physical activity (or exercise) can improve your health and reduce the risk of developing several chronic diseases like high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and cancer, just to name a few. Physical activity can improve your mood, boost your immune system, and even help you maintain a healthy weight.
I often recommend yoga and resistance training for physical activity, but as you are aware, there are plenty of forms of “movement” that you can do! But for the basics, especially if you’re just getting started, yoga and resistance training are where I would start.
Yoga can be a great way to improve your strength and flexibility, manage your stress, improve your heart health, and lose weight! I recommend using a grounded yoga mat to connect yourself with the earth and reduce inflammation.
Resistance training is the mainstay for overall health. It not only has beneficial effects on reducing body fat, it also increases muscle size and strength. Check out some basic dumbbells/free weights that I recommend to everyone.
Another alternative for dumbbells/free weights are resistance bands. They are great for physical therapy, yoga, strength training, and excellent for traveling.
Remember, living a healthy lifestyle including eating a whole foods plant-based diet, regular physical activity, and reducing stress are the best ways to maintain a healthy weight. Let me know what you think in the comment section below.
PS. I am always asked what tools and resources I recommend to help you reach YOUR health goals. Here is the ever-growing, always updated list for you.
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