Spread the love What does it mean to lose weight? In the context of medicine, fitness or health to lose weight refers to reducing your total body mass. That may be lean muscle mass, body fat or even loss of fluids. Weight loss can be intentional or unintentional….
9 Mistakes You Make in Your Weight Loss Diet
Eat less calories than you burn. You have probably heard this weight loss tip numerous times. But, those who begun any weight loss journey know, from experience, that it is not as simple as it sounds. All of us have made these mistakes, so you are not the first one. It is important to learn from them. Therefore, let me point out some common mistakes people do, thinking they are making the right choice, but actually they are just sabotaging their weight loss.
Weight loss mistakes
A lot of people think that if they skip meals, they will ingest fewer calories and therefore, lose more weight. Wrong! When you skip a meal, it sets off a chain of adverse effects: your blood sugar drops, your metabolism slows down and you often end up overeating at your next meal. Skipping meals here and there does not have as severe effects, but chronic meal skipping is not your friend in your weight loss journey. To be honest, you probably will drop couple of pounds more, but that is short term. The moment you start eating regularly you will gain it back. You do not want to struggle for few months losing weight, only to gain it back.
Most of all, skipping your breakfast is the worst. If you do not eat your breakfast you will feel hungrier throughout the day and that is not what you want when gunning for weight loss. Instead, eat high quality, nutrient rich foods. Eat bunch of protein and complex carbs. In fact, studies show people who eat breakfast every morning are more likely to maintain a healthy weight. If you skip breakfast you also increase the chance of going for junk food later in the day, as your craving get stronger.
In the beginning of the article I explain more about what are complex carbs: Atkins Diet (Low-Carb): Benefits, Side Effects and Foods to Eat/Avoid
Also, you should eat every 3 or 4 hours and aim to have 5-6 meals every day. You should not always have a big meal, but breakfast, lunch and dinner with healthy snacks in between is great.
Not drinking enough water
Water is essential for burning calories. If you let yourself get dehydrated, your metabolism drags, and that means slower weight loss. Another great thing about water? It’s the original “detox”—and a far better one than anything else on the market. Water is what flushes out any toxins from our bodies. Aim to consume half an ounce of fluids per pound of body weight per day, and make plain water a large percentage of those fluids.
Furthermore, cutting down water like bodybuilders do will not help you lose weight. They do play with water intake, but that is only few days prior to a competition. The minute they step of the stage, there is a gallon of water waiting for them. Also, choose plain water over any “vitamins added” waters or flavored ones.
Drinking water may also increase the amount of calories burned for at least an hour. Some studies show that this can lead to modest weight loss. Plus, drinking water before meals can reduce your appetite. Also, when you are dehydrated, your kidneys can not function properly, so the body turns to the liver for additional support. Because the liver is working so hard, more of the fat you consume is stored rather than burned off.
Not sleeping enough
Skimping on sleep, especially sleeping less than five or six hours every night, can slow your metabolism and cause hormonal changes that hurt your weight-loss efforts. Being tired may also make you eat more. Also, besides sleep, stress plays a major role in weight loss. If you want to create the ideal fat loss conditions for your body, you have to manage your stress levels and make sure the quantity and quality of your sleep is on point. Make sure that you pun it six, seven or maybe more hours of sleep every single night. If you are drinking enough water, you will feel fresher when you wake up.
Doing the same routine over and over again
Humans have survived this long because they are masters of adaptations, physically and mentally. Whatever exercise or workout you choose will work. Some more than other, but all of them work. The trick is to mix it up. Running, swimming, weight, lifting, HIIT they all work great up to a certain point. That point is when your body adapts to the stress. But if you mix them up, some days doing HIIT, some days swimming, running or dumbbell circuits you will have better results.
Alternating among activities like rowing, pick-up basketball, the stairmill, dumbbell circuits, and HIIT jump-rope intervals will be tougher—way tougher—than doing just one of those things over and over again. But it will also burn way more calories. That’s the point, right?
When reducing your intake of fast-digesting carbohydrates, it makes sense to replace missing calories not only with protein, but also with healthy fats. Put your focus more on healthy oils, avocado, eggs, cheese, nuts, and of course, fatty fish. Most noteworthy, do not make the mistake and reach for margarine. It is a man-made fat. Even hydrogenated vegetable oils are better than margarine. It is made of trans fats and trans fats are also man-made. From experience, we all know that when humans try and artificially produce something that is naturally occurring, it is probably very bad and unhealthy (from a nutritional point).
Get enough fat from the right sources, and none from the wrong ones—those that (not coincidentally) also usually contain other trashy ingredients whose consumption impedes fat loss.
Loading up on low-fat products.
If you eat few slices of low-fat cake you will probably ingest more calories and carbs than eating a regular slice of cake. Personally, I do not recommend consuming low-fat products, because they are full with sugars and have more calories than full-fat products. As I explained above, you should eat fat, but from the right sources. The best way to know how much fat, sugar, and calories you are getting is to check the nutritional label.
Here is an article that can help in choosing the right sources for your macronutrients: Eating Healthy – Explained Simply & Benefits of Healthy Diet?
Not counting all of the calories
Snacks and cravings happen. It is absurd to deny it. If you enter only the breakfast, lunch and dinner in your daily meal log, that is wrong. Like it or not, if you eat a cookie and do not log it up, it still counts toward your daily calorie goal. Two cookies from the office party, the vending machine run during the afternoon slump, and the bedtime sweets, it all adds up, if you are not counting you lose sight of your calorie intake. Most people do not realize how much these bites can add up. Also, not to mention the toll that beverages, like soda or booze, can take on your waistline. It is a big mistake not counting the calories that beverages, other than plain water, have in them. Even the calories in fruit juice and soda can add up quickly.
Not eating before sleep
Contrary to popular belief, eating before sleep can actually help you lose weight. Your body needs energy to function. When you go to sleep it does not shut down completely. If your last meal is at 6 pm and you go to sleep at 1 pm, your body is naturally asking for fuel. Healthy eating in the evening can prevent a late-night binge on ice cream or cookies. Also, by giving your body something to digest you burn calories even when you are sleeping. You should eat milk, cottage cheese, Greek yogurt and other products that contain casein protein. Casein protein digests more slowly and you will have energy for your body throughout your sleeping and your metabolism will not decrease.
Here are some tips on how to boost your metabolism: Metabolism – Definition & Tips on How to Boost It
Focusing way too much on the scale and setting unrealistic goals
When people say they want to lose weight, most of the time they think on losing some inches around the waist, hips, chest etc. The thing about weight is that it fluctuates a lot. It depends on what you eat, how much you ate, how much water you drank and so on. Additionally, you have maybe, through proper nutrition, started to gain some muscle (muscle occupies less space in your body than fat).
Do not make the same mistake over and over again and discourage yourself if the scale goes down more slowly. Instead of weighing yourself, try and take measurements of your hips, arms, chest etc. and write it down. The next time you take the same measurements you will find out that maybe even if your scale is not moving you are getting thinner. On the other hand, there is no better measurement than your clothes. Just put on some clothes and see how they fit. A lot of the times when I put on a T-shirt even though I weigh the same, sometimes it fits and sometimes it does not. So, that means that weight is not the ideal measurement, clothes are.
Furthermore, if you set a goal to lose 10 pounds this week you are bound to fail. Instead set a realistic goal. The healthy way is to lose 2-4 pounds a week, depending on what you are starting with. If you do it the healthy way you will lose weight for long periods of time. On the other hand, if you eat nothing and manage to somehow lose 10 pounds a week, the moment you start eating a bit more you will gain the weight back.
A realistic goal is vital to successful dieting. If you’re not sure what your goal should be, talk to a dietitian.
Patience and consistency are key to your journey. Be proud of yourself for making the decision to lose weight and take control of your life. Ask yourself why you want to lose weight. Then, every time you face adversity along the way, remind yourself why you started. Surround yourself with positive people and people who want to help you change your life. Register on forums and participate in other fitness communities to learn more from other people’s experiences.
Make no mistake, willpower is a skill that must be nurtured like any other. Do not expect it to appear in your life by magic. Often, when people stress about messing up on their nutrition or fitness plan, they take it as a sign to throw in the towel. The truth is, the answer is always just to get back up and try again. Finally, as you grow successful in your weight loss, pay if forward by encouraging other people on their journey.
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