Losing weight the healthy way... Why fat diets don’t work?
To lose weight permanently there is only one sure fire method and that is a healthy, gradual method with regular meals and exercise. The healthy weight loss target should be a maximum of 2 pounds per week. Any more than that and, I’m sorry you are doomed to damaging your body and regaining any weight lost.
If you attempt a crash or fat diet there will be a sudden dramatic weight loss – ‘great’ you think, ‘that’s what I want’! However it will be at the expense of your body’s health and your physical, mental and emotional state. You are not losing fat at all but fluids that contain vital components for your body to function.
When you begin a crash diet your body will realise it is not receiving enough food and revert to a starvation mode as a survival method. It slows down all its functions to conserve energy and you will have persistent hunger pangs as your body tries to encourage you to eat and provide it with the food it needs to function. Your muscle tissue will suffer and begin to be lost and the healthy working of your organs will be affected. By this time you will be feeling weak, tired and very irritable. Not good for you or those around you!
Not too long into your diet your weight loss will plateau and disappointed, feeling tired, depressed and confused you will most likely resume your regular eating habits. You may even revert to binging as the body is trying to obtain as much food as possible in the expectation of another starvation period. This will result in a greater weight gain than the amount of weight you have lost as your metabolism rate is now so reduced your body is not even burning the original number of calories it could previously.
Crash diets initiate a ‘yo-yo’ effect for some where they try each fat diet, revert to their usual habits and regain more weight, then try the new diet on the block with its exciting and enticing claims. We have all been there at some point to some degree… the trick is to get wise and realise how our bodies work and why those crash diets are never successful.
Ok so now you know that type of weight loss does not work and exactly why let’s look at what really does enable you to lose weight, keep it off and create yourself a lifestyle programme that is healthy, enjoyable and gives you the results you are striving for.
You need to avoid your body feeling deprived of food and therefore reverting to its survival mode. To do this you must eat regular meals and 2 small snacks throughout the day. If you do this you will not feel constantly hungry and weak and unable to concentrate and will be able to stick to your new lifestyle and change your life. Missing meals will just mean you will tend to overeat for the meals you do have. You also need to include exercise in your life which will help raise the rate of your metabolism and burn more calories.
It is the inflammatory cells (specifically caused by macrophages which are white blood cells that migrate to the fat tissue in obese people and cause inflammation by releasing chemicals called cytokines) that causes the cells to become insulin resistant and leads to diabetes.
Glycogen is the form in which glucose is stored in our body which is released and converted when required. Glycogen holds water so when a person crash diets the glycogen and water (also the water holding proteins too) are lost by the body. It is not fat that is being lost in a crash diet but fluids and later muscle tissue. Glycogen controls the appetite so the reduced levels stimulate the sensation of extreme hunger.
The body at this point has gone into starvation mode and is trying to acquire more food and will also lower its BMR to conserve energy therefore burn less calories. In this state the person will feel tired, depressed and irritable.
So losing weight can be a whole new start, a whole new way of eating, feeling and having energy to take on the world…its up to you and we are here to help.
© Kayt Cooper - Diet and Nutrition Advisor