With social media swamped with “fad diets” and detox teas it can be hard to know what dieting really is, until now. This post will be a no nonsense guide as to what dieting really is. I have covered this topic before under the guise “How to Lose Weight” but I feel that what was said in that article was a little misleading and could do with some clearing up.
So when it comes to dieting the focus is on calories and strictly speaking that is true. The less calories you consume the more stored body fat you will use and the more weight you will lose. And for most people this is understood and respected. But with anything in life it is not as simple as this. Take this example- a single calorie of fat and a single calorie of salad have the same numerical value but which one is better? Which one do you think is “healthier”? Well done, a calorie of salad is healthier than a calorie of fat. But if you plug this idea into the above pretext you find a problem.
And the issue is this- calories are not the be all and end all. You can eat 100 calories of fat and you can eat 200 calories of vegetables but which one will assist in helping you lose weight. The vegetables will. Just because you are keeping with your assigned “macro” count for the day, will not inherently mean you are healthy or are losing weight at the rate that is possible. So for you to properly achieve your weight goals you need to look much, much closer at what you are eating. You may have three hundred calories left on the day. You have a choice- a burger or a smoothie. The burger is two-hundred and fifty calories. The smoothie is three-hundred and fifty. On the surface the burger actually looks healthier, even if you delve a little deeper the burger still seems healthier. But. Delve deeper still and a different story emerges. You find that the burger has little to no micro-nutrient value, and those calories are made mostly of quick burn carbohydrates and saturated fat. While the smoothie is rich in B vitamins and minerals such as potassium and iron. Even though that smoothie may put you over that days calorie limit, you need to have the knowledge and wisdom to, firstly, understand what is in that smoothie, and most importantly, know that one-hundred and fifty calories will not ruin any progress you will have made.
Another mistake many make is the progress that they want to make. Often times those who gain weight quickly lose weight slowly. This is not down to the amount of food, although this is an aspect, but the speed of the metabolism of that person. Just because you set your calorie limit very low does not mean you will lose weight significantly faster than if you set the limit five-hundred calories larger. If the past year was spent gaining weight- it is foolish to think it will disappear in six months. This type of dieting is known as “crash dieting” and is physically and mentally very damaging; it creates the wrong relationship with food and can permanently harm your metabolism and physical condition. Please do ask if you have any questions about dieting because it is such an important part of a healthy body and mind. I may well do a full post on the science behind crash dieting and its implications- because it is a subject that you see all the time on health fads and even TV shows.