Sometimes you start dieting and realize you are not losing any weight. I'm sure you are wondering what you're doing wrong? Below are the most common mistakes I’ve seen happen when dieting.
Are you skipping meals?
This seems to be a way to decrease calories, resulting in weight loss…well, that’s not how it works. When you skip meals and eat less this causes your body to think that you are 'starving' and it doesn’t know when it will get food again. So the body copes by lowering its metabolism, so you burn fewer calories and keep your fat storage (kind of like an ‘in case of emergency’ situation). It’s recommended to eat of 3 meals per day with 2 snacks per day at regular intervals to keep your metabolism up!
You're eating too much ‘diet’ food:
Low fat yogurt, low carb dessert, sugar-free chocolate…these all seem to have a low amount of calories so you are constantly snacking on them. Always remember too much of anything isn't healthy. Even if the chocolate bar says only 52 calories eating 3 of them quickly accumulates to 156 calories, and doing this with all diet products won’t make them' diet' anymore. Additionally, it is important to read nutrition labels, sometimes sugar-free means there is no sugar, however, they still contain fat from oil or butter. Remember, moderation is key!
You’re eating all the calories you burn:
So you go to the gym for an hour then return home and ‘splurge’, because you ‘burned off’ a lot of calories. Exercise is important in the weight loss principle because it helps you burn ‘extra’ calories for an ultimate net effect of: negative energy balance. When you eat more you will gain back the calories you burned, thus no weight loss effect. Therefore, to lose weight you need to exercise without eating more, it's that simple!
Going 'Low Carb':
It’s the new season and you've decided that the quickest way to lose weight is to cut out bread and pasta. Hold on! Before you jump right into a low carb diet be aware of a few things. You will compensate by eating extra protein. While protein is healthy, too much protein will result in getting stored as fat. Additionally, some protein foods (meats, cheese...) are high in fat. Other common snacks in this type of diet are rich in fat, such as nuts and avocados. Although both are healthy fats they are rich in calories and will result in an accumulation of fat and calories. A combination of protein, carbohydrates, and fats are needed in every diet plan for and effective and healthy weight loss!