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Dieting Myths Revealed

The Truth About Diets

Most people have concerns about their weight and wish they could shed the excess kilos without having to change their lifestyle too much. Unfortunately, this obsession with losing weight quickly and effortlessly is what draws people to the many fad diets doing the rounds. While some of these diets have short-term results, the only way to achieve healthy weight loss is to follow a calorie-controlled diet and take part in regular exercise. Therefore, it is hard for some people to spot dieting truths from dieting myths.


Crash diets very rarely lead to permanent or long-term weight loss. In fact, it is common for crash diets to lead to long-term weight gain. The main problem with this sort of diet is the fact it is so difficult to maintain. When a person eats too little –or worse, starves themselves completely—they will lack energy and feel lethargic and tired. This causes the body to panic and in a bid to raise blood sugar levels thus giving the body energy, the person will crave high-sugar and high-fat foods. When they finally give in and eat something, it becomes a binge and therefore they take in more calories than needed, leading to weight gain.

Radical Exercise

Another of the more popular dieting myths is that a radical exercise regime is the only way a person can lose weight properly. This simply is not true and sensible weight gain means making small changes, which the person will stick to long term. This means gradually introducing physical exercise into their daily routine. According to the Web MD website, adults aged between 18 and 65-years of age should get around 150 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise a week. People who are considered obese will need to incorporate exercise that is more weekly. This amount of exercise, coupled with a diet with a daily calorie deficit of 500, should see the average person lose around 1lb a week.

Slimming Pills

You are unlikely to see a list of weight loss myths that do not include slimming pills. There have been many variations of these pills over these years; all claim to help an individual lose weight with minimum effort. However, slimming pills will not lead to healthy, long-term weight loss – fact. In fact, some slimming pills can be dangerous when not used correctly. The only weight loss pills that should be used, are those prescribed to an individual by a medical professional and then it is important the prescription be followed correctly.

Healthy Food is Expensive

Dieting myths surrounding the use of healthy ingredients, as oppose to convenient food are also rife. Many individuals are reluctant to change their diet because they believe a meal from the freezer will work out cheaper than buying fresh ingredients. This is not true and most people will pay more for a high salt, high-fat ready meal than they would if they went to the store and bought all the ingredients fresh to make the meal themselves.

“Low-Fat” Foods are the Healthy Option

Individuals who buy food which states it is “reduced fat” or “low-fat” will need to be cautious. Food manufacturers have to pass strict guidelines and criteria to be able to label their foods low fat. While a meal labeled low fat will contain less fat than the average one, this does not make a “diet” option or even mean it is healthy to eat. These meals tend to be high in fat in the first place, meaning the low fat versions will stay contain more than a piece of fruit or a chicken salad. Low fat meals usually contain a lot more sugar, to make up for the lack of taste.

Carbohydrates Cause Weight Gain

One of the most believed dieting myths is that carbohydrates make you gain weight. However, when a person eats carbohydrates in the recommended daily amounts they will not cause weight gain. A New England Journal of Medicine published a study that indicated individuals who lost weight on the no-carbohydrates Atkins diet, only did so because they ate less food in general, as oppose to them eating no carbs. Wholemeal and wholegrain carbohydrates are most recommended for dieters, rather than some of the starchier alternatives.

Drinking Water Causes Weight Loss

While water will keep a dieting individual hydrated, it will not be solely responsible for any weight loss. While some dieting myths would have a person believe drinking water leads to losing weight, it will only reduce the urge to snack. This is because when a person drinks water, it leaves them feeling bloated and suppresses the appetite. However, this does wear off and if an individual is hungry enough, they will eat regardless of whether they have drunk water or not.

Skipping Meals Will Help You Lose Weight

The most common of dieting myths, that if a person only has one or two meals a day they will lose weight. This is not true and the only real way a person can lose weight effectively is by reducing the amount of calories taken in and increasing the amount of calories burned off. Skipping meals, in particular breakfast, can lead to poor nutrition. This can then lead to more serious side effects, such as, constant tiredness, nausea and illness. Skipping meals is also likely to cause a person to binge eat, as the body craves sugar to convert to much needed energy.

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