The Biggest Misconceptions About Weight Loss

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It doesn’t matter where you are, you are nowhere compared to where you can go. – Bob Proctor

Every now and then, we all find ourselves concerned about our weight, but most of the time, we have a wrong approach to this subject. I believe there are many misconceptions about weight loss; that’s why I decided to write about this topic and show what we are doing (thinking) wrong.


#1 There is no “best diet”

It would be wrong to think that there is “one best diet”, but many are prone to think so. Furthermore, all diets – low carb, low fat, Atkins, and other diets – show the same results in the end. Although some people might lose a little more, the overall conclusion of one randomized study was that, eventually, we all would regain some of that weight later.

The Biggest Misconceptions About Weight Loss

When choosing a diet, one should think about their preferences, personalities and genetics. We that is, our bodies respond differently to different lifestyles. The solution is to find the best diet for you, instead of going with the popular diets that might not help you at all. Many nutritionists suggest that the best approach would be to focus on eating healthier and cut down the calories as one prefers and likes.


What does this mean?

Eat regularly; don’t skip meals, especially breakfast.

Eat healthy food; for instance, instead of fruit juice opt for fresh fruits.

Don’t arrive at your next regular meal hungry (but don’t snack all the time).

Skip empty calorie foods – processed snacks and sugary drinks.

Eat more at home, and prepare your food.


The one “rule” I find lucrative is a “half-plate rule” – when you are preparing the food, make sure half of your plate are vegetables or fruits, for either lunch or dinner. (Of course, the best way to get all necessary essential nutrients from the fruit is to eat it before a meal).

As you can see, I didn’t write about anything revolutionary, but I believe this is the best way, or tactic, to find an eating plan that fits you most, instead of going for a diet that might not be that good for your body.


#2 Diets fail due to unreasonable expectations

Our biggest problems also consider setting our goals high, having unreasonable expectations and “believing“ in super-fast results, or expecting a failure before we even started with a diet plan. Other common problem includes picking a diet plan that does not suit us at all and then disappoints about results.

Misconceptions About Weight Loss

The biggest mistake is trying to lose too much too fast, and the common result is very often different – there are higher chances we will regain more in a short period. On the other hand, there is also the question of confidence – those who try than fail, easily lose confidence.


What does this mean?

It’s wrong to think that it would be easy to lose weight quickly because you didn’t gain it quickly.

change your habits a little at a time; it’s much easier to stay focused.

Think about long term results.


#3 Take advice from those who have successfully lost weight

This is a bit tricky, especially today when there are a lot of people who would tell their “successful stories” about losing weight. What I mean by this is looking at some scientific studies and researches that can help you.

The Biggest Misconceptions About Weight Loss

Many studies were focused on the behavior and habits of adults who were trying to lose weight, and they have come up with some interesting results. One study by the National Weight Control Registry was able to identify common behaviors of those who succeeded in long-term weight loss control and their habits.


What did they find out?

To keep track, they weigh themselves at least once a week – the research found it the key component of successful weight loss maintenance (75% weigh themselves at least once a week)

They exercise regularly – walking is the most common exercise (90% exercise about an hour per day).

They think about calories, their calorie intake, and count calories, avoiding high-fat food, paying attention to the portion size and not skipping breakfast (78% eat breakfast every day). We usually underestimate how many calories we eat; one study showed that people underestimate the sugar content of fruit juices because they believe the juices are healthy. To solve this problem, physicians and nutritionists advise keeping a food diary and measuring food. One of the latest researches showed we have no idea how many calories are in the food we eat, which makes it even worse because more and more people prefer eating out.

They watch less TV (62% watch less than 10 hours of TV per week)

They identify their goals, motivations and barriers. This is a good approach – you will be honest with yourself and see if you are prepared to make changes.

They change their environment: don’t hide boxes of cookies, or eat from boxes, for instance.


#4 Exercising can be unhelpful

How is this even possible? This is the biggest surprise, but studies showed that overweight people also gain more weight when they started exercising. Why is this happening? Scientists pointed out that people develop compensatory behavior – they eat more because they know they are working out. The most common mistake would be to go for a run and eat some high-calorie food afterward.

The Biggest Misconceptions About Weight Loss

Physical activity is important for both weight loss and weight maintenance, but only if you understand “the rules”.


#5 Losing weight isn’t only about physical appearance, but rather overall health

One needs patience and focus on losing weight, but many people easily give up – finding excuses and making peace with the idea that not everything is about physical appearance. No, it’s not, judging a person by its appearance is utterly wrong, but precisely this attitude leads to neglecting the “health part” of losing weight.

The Biggest Misconceptions About Weight Loss

Obesity represents a high risk to many health problems and illnesses – one should think about the health benefits of losing weight first, and then about appearance.

What do you think?

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Last article update: 7/28/2019