Myths: 4 common weight loss myths

Weight Loss advice and products are so common (and contentious) these days. There are competing opinions everywhere.

Let’s forget about “who’s right and focus more on “what right”. Because what get results is what’s more important and what I will be focusing on in this post.

I respect you way too much to make you empty promises and try to sell you something that doesn’t work.

There are lots of weight loss myths out there. And I’m going to tackle the top ones that I come across most often in my practice.

Myth: Calories cause weight gain, and eating fewer calories is the path the weight loss.

Calories are important if you want to lose weight. If you eat and absorb more than you use, then your body’s wisdom will store some for later. Calories do matter.

But, they are not the “be all and end all” of weight loss; they’re important, but they are the symptom and not the cause. Let’s think more about the reasons why people eat more calories. And focus on the cause.

People eat too many calories, not because of hunger, but because they feel sad, lonely or bored. Or because they are tired or stressed. Or maybe it’s because they are happy and celebrating. All those feelings interact with out gastrointestinal, nervous and hormonal system which influence our calorie intake.

Myth: “Eat less and move more” is good advice

Well, then we’re all in tip top shape, right? Because people have been following this advice (or myth) for years.

So, the premise of this myth is based on calories in minus calories out equals your weight. So, eating fewer calories, and burning off more calories (because human physiology is a simple math equation. Right?)

Even if most people could happily follow this advice (which they can’t); it completely negates other factors that contribute to weight problems. Things like the causes of overeating mentioned above. And then there’s our genetics, health conditions that we are dealing with and our exposure to “obesogenic” compounds.

Myth: A calorie is a calorie

Can we be done with this one already?

Science has confirmed several caloric components of food differ from others. For example, the “thermic effect of food” or (TEF) is that some nutrients require calories to be metabolized. And they can slightly increase your metabolism, just by eating them.

For example, when you metabolize protein you burn more calories than when you metabolize carbohydrates. Protein and carbohydrates both have 4 calories/gram; but the TEF of protein is 15-30%; and the TEF of carbohydrates is 5-10%.

Here is another example. Different fats are metabolized differently. Medium chain triglycerides (fats) (MCT’s) have the same 9 calories/gram that other fats do; but they’re metabolized by the liver before getting into the bloodstream and therefore aren’t utilized or stored by the body the same way as other fats.

Myth: Buy this supplement/tea/food/magic potion to lose weight

There is no magic pill when it comes to weight loss. And there is no supplement, tea, food, or other potion will do the trick.

Some products that make these claims, but they’re full of garbage (or shall I say, “marketing gold?”) The only thing that you will lose is your money (and possibly your hope). So, please don’t believe this myth. This is the reason that most people who lose weight can’t keep it off. And, the real magic is in adopting a sustainable holistic and healthy approach to living your life. What you need is a long-term lifestyle makeover, not a product.

Conclusion

Weight Loss is hard! It takes commitment and accountability.  And there are too many people out there trying to make it sound like they have the simple solution (or the latest and the greatest)!

Don’t fall for myths that say:

  • Calories cause weight gain, and fewer calories are the path to weight loss.
  • “Eat less move more” is good advice.
  • A calorie is a calorie
  • Buy this supplement/food/magic potion to lose weight.

 

Now check out my magical “weight Loss salad” recipe below (just kidding!)

Kale cucumber salad

Kale cucumber salad

Recipe (Myth-free salad, filling and nutritious): Kale Cucumber Salad

Serves 2

Salad

4 cups kale, divided
1 cup cooked beans of your choice (white beans, chickpeas, etc.)

1 cup cooked quinoa, divided
1 cucumber, sliced and divided

Cucumber Dill Dressing

½ cup tahini
½ lemon, juiced
2 tbsp dill
½ cup cucumber, chopped
1 green onion, chopped
½ tsp maple syrup
2 dashes salt

2 dashes black pepper
¼ tsp garlic, minced

Instructions

Divide salad ingredients into two bowls.

Add all dressing ingredients into a food processor or blender and blend until creamy. You may need to add water to thin. Add it slowly, a tbsp at a time until desired thickness is reached.

Add dressing to salads and gently toss.

Serve & enjoy!

Tip: Extra dressing can be stored in the fridge for a few days

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References:

https://authoritynutrition.com/metabolism-boosting-foods/

https://authoritynutrition.com/5-chemicals-that-are-making-you-fat/

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