Another year, another weight loss resolution. If you’re one of the millions of Americans who’ve taken the first steps towards achieving their physique goals during the first month of 2017, congratulations!
Now, the reality is that less than half of the people who make a New Year’s fat loss resolution will be still on board by the six-month mark, and one study identifies the ultimate success rate at 8%, which is well, pretty terrible. So why do so many people fail to reach their weight loss goals?
There seems to be a huge intention-action gap here, even though the rules are pretty simple: eat less and exercise more. It’s safe to conclude that most people fail to do a few key things wrong, starting with defining their goals more realistically to making sure they eat a healthy well-balanced diet. And perhaps most importantly, most people simply lack the patience to stick through all the perceived unpleasantness of sustainable weight loss, such as giving up on your most unhealthy habits, fighting off food cravings and making regular exercise an integral part of your lifestyle.
More often than not, it’s having the wrong mindset that ultimately pushes people off the track.
But even having the strongest willpower in the world won’t help you shed off the extra pounds if you don’t right knowledge about which dieting and training options promote weight loss, and which can actually reverse it.
In this article we will discuss the 7 biggest fat loss mistakes that can reverse your efforts and destroy your motivation to sculpt the lean body of your dreams. Read it to find out how to radically improve your chances of success and start losing weight without losing your sanity!
#1. Skipping Meals
When you’re desperate to lose weight, skipping as many meals as you can might seem like the perfect strategy to meet your goals in a short period of time. After all, it’s all about lowering your calorie intake, right?
Wrong. This is actually a really ineffective strategy to dropping weight. Chronic skipping meals will slow down your metabolic rate and leave you constantly hungry and irritated and with low energy levels. You’ll have a harder time curbing your cravings and you will be more likely to overeat at the next meal. All in all, even if you manage to lose some weight, keeping it off will prove as an impossible task with this method. And what’s even worse, chronic undereating can cause substantial metabolic damage and strain on your body in the long run. It can harm your hormonal balance and negatively impact your overall health.
So stop trying to starve yourself lean and focus on making your diet healthier and accelerating your metabolism by eating 4-6 clean smaller meals in the day and training regularly.
#2. Excessive Consumption of Fast-Digesting Carbs
If you’re like most people, you could probably use a shift in focus from how much you eat to what kinds of food you eat. When substantial weight loss is the goal, you need to make some serious and lasting dietary changes that can allow you to get the body you want and maintain its health at the same time. One big issue for dieters are carbohydrates, which can be divided into slow-digesting and fast-digesting ones: the first group which includes foods such as yams, wild rice, beans, whole grains, red potatoes and certain types of fruits are loaded with fiber and nutrients and produce slow and gradual increases in blood glucose and modest insulin release, keeping us full and satisfied for longer periods of time.
The second group are known as high-glycemic or “simple” carbs and they come in several forms, which include natural and processed foods. They tend to quickly increase your blood sugar levels and spike your insulin after consumption and give an immediately but short-lived energy boost. The list of sources of fast-digesting carbs includes white potatoes, white rice, white bread, watermelons, grapes, but also table sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, sodas and cereals. In general, the more processed a food item is, the more simple sugars it contains.
There are times when fast-digesting carbs are beneficial for the body, such as the post-workout meal, when your starved body needs to replenish its glycogen reserves, but if you eat too much of them in the course of the day, your insulin levels will be chronically elevated and you’ll tend to put on fat more easily because insulin plays an important role in fat accumulation by promoting its storage. That’s why at most meals you should stay away from refined grains, sugary drinks and processed desserts or high-glycemic fruits at all meals of the day except the post-workout one, and opt for slower-releasing carbs that can fuel your body more effectively and keep you full for a lot longer.
#3. Eliminating Dietary Fat
After a few decades of treating dietary fat as the biggest enemy of health and fitness, it’s becoming clear that eating fat won’t necessarily make you fat and that fat is a crucial nutrient that deserves an adequate place in a healthy, well-balanced diet. In fact, in the modern world, fat is not as much as enemy of health and weight loss as much as sugar is.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that excessive fat consumption is a good idea. It simply means that you should focus on meeting your daily diet requirements of healthy fats such as those found in oils, avocados, eggs, butter, dairy products, fatty fish and nuts, while at the same time restricting your consumption of trans-fats as much as possible. Trans-fats are found in abundance in all packaged baked goods, fried fast foods, margarines and processed snacks, and are best avoided by all means.
When people eat less fat, they tend to eat more starch or sugar instead and this eventually increases their cholesterol levels and puts them under greater risk of cardiovascular diseases.
Furthermore, eating high-quality fats can actually help you become more lean by promoting the release of hormones that speed up fat burning and reduce fat storage. Also, eating healthy fats will contribute to creating healthy cell walls which are better able to metabolize insulin and keep blood sugar better regulated.
All in all, knowing your fats and including the goods ones in your diet will keep you healthy and promote your weight loss efforts, so don’t shy away from fat – instead, use it as a weapon to stay fit and healthy.
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