If you can’t lose weight, your diet might be to blame. With so much conflicting information out there, it’s no wonder that people can’t figure how to lose weight. Diets fail for many reasons. Maybe you feel too deprived, hate the food or you plateau after a couple of weeks on the program. Whatever your diet woes are, avoiding some common mistakes can help you get started on the right foot.
Diets that force you to eat too little have two major disadvantages. First of all, they are unsustainable in the long run, so you end up giving up and returning to your regular, unhealthy eating habits. Crash diets also are very low in calories, so you’re more likely to experience cravings.
Thinking “Diet” Means “Low Carb”
Despite what many diets out there want you to believe, carbohydrates are not the enemy. The problem lies on the choice of carbs. Highly-processed, white carbs, such as white bread, sweets and soda, contain lots of sugars and empty calories. Whole grains, on the other hand, are high in fiber and very filling, so they’re actually a good choice if you’re trying to lose weight.
Forgetting Liquid Calories
A single can of soda contains about 150 calories and up to 15 tsp. of sugar. Since 3,500 calories equal 1 lb., drinking a day can causes you to gain 1 lb. every 23 days. Switch to water or calorie-free drinks to avoid this problem.
Losing Weight Too Fast
The ideal weight loss is 1 to 2 lbs. per week. Lose weight much faster than that and you’re likely to be losing muscle or water weight, rather than fat. In the long run, this can lead to a sluggish metabolism. When you lose weight too fast, you’re also more likely to gain it back.
Skipping meals affects your blood sugar levels, causing them to drop. As your blood sugar goes down, you’ll feel hungrier and be more likely to overeat later in the day. If you eat five to six small meals throughout the day, though, you’ll end up eating less in the long run, as you won’t experience hunger and won’t be tempted to indulge in “forbidden” foods.
Eliminating All Your Favorite Foods
An “all-or-nothing” diet is a recipe for disaster. Few people can stay on a diet that completely bans all the foods they love, whether those are carbs or fats. Allowing yourself a small indulgence every few days won’t make you feel as deprived and helps you stick to your plan the rest of the week.
Lack of Planning
Lack of planning means you might end up stuck at work without a healthy snack or end up ordering pizza because your fridge is empty. Saying you want to lose weight is not a very effective weight-loss goal. You need to know how to get there to achieve that goal. For example, plan on exercising 30 minutes a day right after work or as soon as you wake up. Decide on a menu for the week, even if it’s a flexible one. Fill up your cabinets with healthy groceries in advance so your cupboards are full and you don’t have an excuse to eat junk.
Eating When You’re Not Hungry
Eating out of boredom, stress or sadness can easily and quickly break a diet. If you eat to soothe your emotions, you need to find alternative ways to deal with them. Rather than grabbing a bag of chips, go for a walk, take a bubble bath or play with your dog.
Eating Too Little
When you don’t eat enough, your metabolism actually slows down and your body conserves, rather than burns, calories. This is a protection mechanism your body uses to prevent starvation. As a general rule, your body doesn’t care if you’re overweight. Fewer calories equals starvation as far as your metabolism is concerned. Don’t drop under 1,200 calories per day in order to keep your body running at full speed.
Relying on “Magic” Solutions
No pill, shake or gimmicky product magically melts the pounds off. Even prescription weight-loss pills must be used alongside a diet and exercise program in order to be effective. If you put all your faith in a single product or eating method, you’re setting yourself up for failure. Even if you do manage to lose weight, it’s likely to be a temporary thing.
Last modified on 23/09/2015