Common Weight Loss Myths Busted
Weight loss advice is everywhere these days, and yet, so much of it contradicts nutritional science so I wanted to take the time to explain a few truths about weight loss so you don’t get stuck in a weight loss plateau that lasts for weeks, months, or even years.
Today, I’m going to share some powerful information that’s going to help you understand why you might be struggling with your weight loss efforts and what you need to do to start seeing results.
There are WAY too many weight loss myths out there, so I’m going to tackle the ones I come across the most in my nutrition practice to make sure you aren’t following these outdated ideas.
Myth 1: Calories cause weight gain. Therefore, fewer calories are the path to weight loss
Yes, it’s true that eating too many calories can cause weight gain. It only makes sense that if you consume more energy than you use, your body will store the extra energy for later.
HOWEVER, calories are not the “be-all and end-all" of weight loss.
In fact, many of my clients came to me because they couldn’t understand why they weren’t losing weight on the very low-calorie diet they were following.
They didn’t understand that eating TOO LITTLE calories stalls weight loss too.
It’s important that we create a deficit of “energy in” vs “energy out” when we are trying to lose weight, but too much of a deficit actually slows down our metabolism and pushes our body into starvation mode – both of these mechanisms cause weight stalls and even weight gain. Yikes!
Myth 2 - A calorie is a calorie
Can we please put this one to bed already?
Not all calories are created equal as far as weight loss goes. The 100 calories in an apple operates very differently in the body than 100 calories from a cookie.
Nutritional science has long since confirmed this.
For example, proteins and carbohydrates both have 4 calories/gram, but when you metabolize protein you burn more calories than when you metabolize carbohydrates because the TEF (thermic effect on food) is much higher in protein at 15–30% then carbohydrates at 5–10%.
Even different forms of fat are metabolized differently.
Medium chain triglycerides (MCT’s) for example, have the same 9 calories/gram that other fats do; but they're metabolized by the liver before entering the bloodstream and therefore they aren't utilized or stored in the same way as other fats.
The take away?
Yes, it’s important to monitor HOW MUCH we are eating, but it’s even more important for weight loss to pay attention to WHAT we are eating.
Myth 3 - “Eat less move more” is good advice
The premise of this myth is based on the first myth – “that “calories in” minus “calories out” equals your weight”. With that logic, eating fewer calories and using exercise to burn more calories should be all we need to lose weight, right?
But if that were true – then why are so many people still struggling to lose weight despite chronic exercising and eating 1,000 calories a day?
The honest truth?
Because human physiology is NOT a simple math equation……
This thought process completely negates other factors that contribute to weight problems, such as pre-existing medical conditions, hormonal imbalance, genetics, autoimmune disorders, and eating disorders to name a few.
Weight loss is not a one size fits all “calories in – calories-out” equation, so a generic meal plan and exercise program simply doesn’t work for a lot of people because it’s not specific to their nutritional needs.
So what IS the most important factor to consider when you are trying to lose weight?
Your body requires specific nutrients to function optimally – this is true for everyone, but if you have an underlying medical condition, food sensitives or you’re an emotional eating – your needs are going to be different then someone without these factors.
So, if you’re struggling to lose weight and you can’t figure out what you’re doing wrong, I invite you to book a nutrition consultation with me or my fellow nutritionist, Shane Organ, free of charge.
Simply book your free call HERE and we’ll schedule a time to review your history with you and give you specific recommendations for how to reach your weight loss goals.
It’s time to start gearing your weight loss efforts towards YOUR needs and YOUR wants – not somebody else’s
You deserve it.
To Your Health and Happiness,
Carmen MacPherson-Saulnier, RHNC