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Myths of Dieting : Diet Myths That You Need To Stop ASAP!

You step onto the weighing scale with the hope that you must have lost weight but sees that the needle has not budged a bit. Frustrating, right? We tend to follow every diet tips religiously that has been told to us or written in books. But are we sure that whatever tips have been suggested are authentic or reliable? Hence, let us reveal certain Diet Myths that you need to stop ASAP.

Diet Myths

Let’s have a look at some diet myths.

Diet Myths

Myth #1 – Going on the diet is the best way for weight loss.

Truth –

We feel that when we switch to a plan temporarily then we can lose weight and then later its ok to go back to our older ways. Whenever we think of diet modification, we need to do it permanently as temporary changes do not bring permanent losses. Don’t always think diet as a kind of quick fix. Always change the way you eat and make a point to continue this change for the lifetime. Let this be your lifestyle modification. If you see positive results, then there is no need to go back to your older ways. You need to eat little less than you used to eat before with right and healthy choices and portion control. Apart from diet, exercise is also equally important. Brisk walking or certain other moderate intensity exercises have contributed towards healthy weight loss. So let say, it’s not you are going on diet, you going through healthy lifestyle modification.

There are lots of weight loss myths and facts which we will discuss here…

Myth #2 – It’s ok to have foods as much as you want, as long as these foods are healthy.

Truth –

The market is flooded with many health related products like nuts and their butter, oatmeal and avocados but they are slightly high in calories. Yes, you can substitute chocolate chip cookies with a medium bowl of oatmeal but that doesn’t give you the freedom to eat how much ever stuff you want. We should always take into account portion size of the food irrespective whether the food is healthy or not. There are certain packets available that are portion controlled so that its easy for you to understand the portion control. Buy mini packets rather than family packs or tubs to control the portion.

Myth #3 – If you are working out, you have the freedom to eat whatever you want.

Truth: –

You are having an extra burger and a pack of French fries after you worked out for half an hour on the trend mill. This will offset the efforts of weight management plan. You should work out well and eat smart for better results, it goes hand in hand. Working out and then eating uncontrollably will never work.

Here are some common food myths and facts that you must know…

Myth #4 – You will lose weight faster if you don’t eat before workouts.

Truth –

We feel that when we work out on empty stomach the fat from the stores gets burned efficiently and faster. Well, that’s not true. If we don’t eat before the workout, we will not be able to do for the longer period or with higher intensity than we are supposed to do if you want to see the difference in the body. Moreover, workout on empty stomach can cause low blood sugar and you tend to feel so hungry after a heavy workout that you tend to make poor food decisions like downing on large pizza or creamy pies after you get to return home. Hence it is good to have something light and healthy like a small bowl of nuts or muesli with milk before the workout.

Myth #5 – Crash dieting or fasting helps you to lose weight.

Truth –

Crash dieting is just a short term way of losing weight wherein it removes not only fat but also lean muscle and tissue. The loss in lean muscle causes a fall in basal metabolic rate. A basal metabolic rate is a number of calories your body needs. Your body will need lesser calories as a result of which you tend to gain weight faster once you stop dieting. Fasting also makes you weak and sometimes it makes it difficult to sustain with crash diets for a longer period of time if we are on the restricted diet plan.

Myth #6- All calories are equal.

Truth –

There are many who just count the calories that eat in the food but still don’t lose weight. According to many, a calorie is a calorie is a calorie. But 100 calories of candy is not the same as 100 calories of broccoli. Every foods goes through different biochemical pathways, they have a huge effect on the biological processes and govern how much should we eat.

The calories from protein are less fattening as compared to fats and carbohydrates as more energy is required to metabolize protein. More energy is required to digest whole foods than the processed foods. Hence simple changes in food selection lead to better results than calorie restriction. Calories are of course important but always comparing or counting them is not that necessary to lose weight.

Let’s see how to lose 20 pounds in 2 weeks by following a proper diet routine along with exercise.

Myth #7 – Lose 10 pounds in 2 weeks.

Truth –

Not this is utterly a myth. We must have seen ads or hoardings where claims are made that you can lose 10 pounds or more within 2 weeks. We tend to fall into such promises due to the desperation but will it sustain well once you go back to your normal diet? If we need to lose 1 pound, we need to eliminate 3,500 calories a week by portion control and eating sensibly and improved physical activity. Hence you need to restrict 500 calories per day to lose 1 pound a week (as 500 calories*7 days in week = 3,500 calories per week). That’s where you lose weight naturally.

Myth #8 -If we restrict certain foods, we will definitely lose weight.

Truth –

If we just decide to strive on oranges or cucumber for the whole day, you are doing a wrong choice and even dangerous too. You don’t need to starve to lose weight but slight healthy modifications can bring positive results.  We even say that carbohydrate-rich foods are fattening so let’s avoid it. We need to know that complex carbohydrate are rich in fiber which can keep our hunger at bay. The unprocessed and whole grain ones are healthy and can substitute the refined counterparts. Even having low-fat foods doesn’t mean that you are free from fat and you can lose weight in a jiffy. Do not get fooled by fat-free or low-fat claims as these products may be high in calories. Another thing is that when we have the so called low-fat or fat-free foods, we tend to savor more in quantity considering it safe and eat twice as much as of the low-fat products rather than the foods containing the fair amount of fats.

We understand that when we say going on diet, the picture of tasteless and not so tempting foods come into our mind thus sometimes discouraging our efforts of losing weight. Going on a healthy diet doesn’t have to be boring it can be made interesting by few healthy swaps and be improving the color and texture of foods and bringing certain modifications in the cooking procedure.

Let’s not say as ‘’Dieting”, we say as healthy lifestyle pattern that can be easily modified with foods commonly available, gradual control on our portions and improved physical activity.

Any assistance needed to guide about diet myths through the healthy diet plan, you can consult an expert or dietician.

Anita Varier

Mrs. Anita Varier is a Post Graduate in Home Science with specialization in Food Science and Nutrition from S.N.D.T Women's University, Mumbai. She cleared her NET(Lecturership) exam in 2004 and taught students at Post Graduate level.

Some of her works have been published in dietitic journals and websites, the most notable being "Blending of edible oils to achieve nutritionally favorable fatty acid ratios" in Journal of Oil Technologists' Association of India. She is an avid reader and shows immense interest in the field of art like dance and music.

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