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October 11, 2018

Three common myths about weight loss you always thought were true

Adult Health Weight Loss

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Losing weight is a challenging feat, and it can become even more challenging when myths or misinformation threaten to derail your diet or fitness plan. Not only do common misconceptions hurt your chances of successfully shedding extra pounds, but they can do serious damage to your health and well-being, too.

While everyone’s weight-loss journey is unique, these are some common myths about slimming down that should be avoided at all costs.

1. Put your diet on the fast track by going carbohydrate-free

Despite what many sources would have you believe, carbohydrates are not the enemy. Dieters sticking to a Paleo or Ketogenic diet often forego carbs altogether, but countless studies and clinical trials have found that cutting all carbs isn’t the answer to weight loss success. In fact, we need carbs to function — they are fuel that keeps our bodies up and running properly. When it comes to carbs, the key is to understand which ones are good and which are bad.

Carbohydrates are broken down into two categories: simple and complex. Complex carbs are usually whole foods that contain fiber, including legumes, whole grains, and vegetables. Simple carbs, on the other hand, contain added sugars but little to no fiber — think pasta, bread, and sweets — and should be consumed sparingly, especially if you’re striving to lose weight.

2. Opting for low-fat foods will help you lose weight

As counter-intuitive as it sounds, foods that are considered low-fat or non-fat aren’t necessarily better for you than full-fat options, nor do they guarantee that you’ll reach your weight loss goals. Many reduced-fat items have the same amount of calories as full-fat versions, plus they often contain a lot of sugar or artificial additives to help them taste better without the fat. More often than not, proper portion control works better than cutting fat.

Much like carbs, there are high-quality fats and low-quality fats. It’s important to consume cuisine that contains healthy fats, like salmon, avocadoes, and nuts. Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids are shown to improve blood cholesterol levels, which is important as you age, as having good cholesterol reduces the risk of health complications like heart disease.

3. If you “cheat” on your diet, you’ll never lose weight

Adhering to a healthy diet is critically important, but building one or two “cheat” days into your weekly eating plan will actually help you lose weight. Indulging in a slice of pizza or your favorite dessert every now and then helps keep the joy in eating, making you feel less deprived and less likely to abandon your diet in the long-term. Think of your cheat meal as a time for you to enjoy “bad” protein, carbs, and fat. This could mean ordering fries on the side instead of a salad, or making your next sandwich with white bread instead of a healthier, multigrain version.

To ensure your weight-loss goals are successful, construct a plan that works for you. Do some nutritional research before crafting your diet and be sure that exercise is part of the equation. Reaching your goal weight won’t happen over night, but with time, patience, and the right attitude, you’ll be well on your way towards a sleeker, healthier physique.

This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. The information on this web site is for general information purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or health care provider on any matters relating to your health.