Ok, I admit. It really is impossible to put ALL the lies about rapid weight loss diets in one article. There is just too much bogus nutrition information around to gather them all. But here are some of the main dieting myths to watch out for…
Like you, I wish there really were a miracle diet. “Eliminate body fat and get a great shape without effort! Never be hungry! Be healthy the whole time!” Sounds great. I’d also like to resemble [your favorite movie star] without plastic surgery.
Unfortunately, reality refuses to cater to my fantasies. Rapid weight loss diets don’t have to be miserable. But there are always tradeoffs.
Some fad diets tell you to eat nothing but fruit for days, then meats and grains later. Bad idea. Lots of carbs and no protein almost guarantees weight gain.
Yeah, the advocates always have some fancy theory about why it will work, along with some questionable anecdotal evidence. Skepticism is a very good idea here.
Then there are ultra low-carb, ultra-high-protein diets like Atkins or the Paleo diet. They’re not harmful, but don’t go to extremes. You might see rapid weight loss at first, but it won’t last. And, you may suffer other problems (like potential kidney damage).
There are even some way out suggestions, like huge amounts of chocolate. Sure, chocolate does have some good things like antioxidants. But, in most cases, the form they come in also comes with high amounts of sugar and fat.
The basic error of all these rapid weight loss diets is lack of balance. You may lose weight fast, but will you keep it off? Will you damage your health in the process rapid tone?
You need a certain amount of carbohydrates. They’re the body’s main source of free energy. Reducing your normal intake (usually more than you need) forces the body to go after fat stored in cells to compensate. You lose body fat.
But don’t go overboard. Starving yourself of carbs slows your body’s metabolism down. It becomes harder to lose those subsequent pounds. Also, excess protein can cause a fluid imbalance (making it hard to flush toxins, which build up in the kidneys).
Remember, rapid weight loss, per se, isn’t your goal. Gaining 10 lbs of muscle wouldn’t necessarily be bad. You want to reduce pounds and keep them off. You want to keep your health while you’re doing it. And, even weight loss isn’t your primary goal. You want to reduce your body fat percentage, again while optimizing health.
There are plenty of ways to do that. Consume the right amounts of protein, fat, and carbohydrates – and no more. Get the right balance of vitamins and minerals. Don’t use food to compensate for anxiety. Exercise moderately.
You’ll shed pounds fast, reduce body fat, and get healthy before you know it.