6 Overrated Weight Loss Myths: Fact Check

  • Usman 

Weight loss is a very eye-opening journey that we follow. For some, it is to reduce their weight gain and obesity. For others, it might be to remain healthy and fit. Whatever reason you have for trying to lose weight and that excess belly or abdomen fat you may have, it all comes down to the same concept: weight loss is not a fast process. It will take you time and you will need a schedule and lots of patience.

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However, with this process, comes a lot of problems. I am going to be discussing a very widespread and important problem today that often comes in the way of weight loss and healthy eating: Weight Loss Myths.

It is highly possible that you have heard of these myths and that you believe some of them and follow them religiously. That is why I am here to discuss all these myths that are preventing you from shedding that extra fat.

Let us start with the most popular and we will make our way towards the least popular myths yet still widely believed.

Starving Is Good

This is one common and famous myth that is found everywhere, from online articles to fitness magazines. Many of us are led to believe that starving or skipping important meals such as breakfast and lunch are essential in weight loss and dieting and that this method will help us lose pounds and pounds of fat in just one day.

However, this is incorrect. Starving actually leads to our energy stores being low, including blood sugar and insulin and that can lead us to being exhausted and malnourished. And when we are depleted and our bodies are hungry, we are highly likely to eat a lot and eat unhealthy foods.

And so, we end up eating twice the amount of food than we would have originally eaten that day. Not to mention that starving will also lead to diseases and malnutrition. Thus, the process of starving eventually leads to more weight gain instead of weight loss.

Eat Less And Move More.

This myth is derived from the concept that eating less and then conducting lots of physical activity will help us lose weight. While it is true that physical activity and exertion does help us lose fat, it does not correlate to this myth. The original concept for this weight loss technique is quite different. It is a scientific method known as:

Energy expenditure should be greater than energy intake.

This means that our physical exertion should be greater than the energy we’ve taken. As you can see, this is very different from the myth we’ve heard. It doesn’t mean that we should lessen the amount of our energy intake.

And energy that we might have consumed from junk food is not going to last us as long as energy we take from foods with protein. So, while the “move more” part of the myth is essentially true, the “eat less” part is definitely not. We should eat carefully and then exert our energy as much as we can.

Diet Supplements Work Magic

Of course, how can we forget the most viral and globally found weight loss myth? Diet supplements are marketed throughout the world and with different names, different brands and different promises.

One common promise that these diet supplements claim is that they aid weight loss by helping us lose tons of weight overnight or in just 3 days, depending on the brand. However, several studies have shown that these do not work.

In fact, they do more harm than good to you. According to the 2016 study reviewed by the Mayo Clinic, it showed that these pills only contributed to losing 5 percent weight in a year.

And several of these diet pills are banned and removed from the market by FDA after a short-term period. That is because these pills are known to lead to heart diseases and much more life-threatening diseases.

One such dietary drug is Belviq. This drug was removed from the USA market by FDA in February 2020 due to an increased number of cancer cases that were linked to the people who were taking or had previously taken Belviq. So, now you know that dietary supplements are not the right tool for weight loss, and they will eventually harm you in some way.

Eating Fat, In Turn, Makes You More Fat

When searching for suitable diets online, this comes up almost every time. People are advised to eat no fat at all as it will make them gain more weight. This is a myth that was, like other myths, generated from lack of knowledge.

While it is true that fats in refined, processed and fast food are harmful and will add more weight to our bodies, it is not true that all fats are like that.

It is widely known and researched that healthy food enriched with good fats is especially important for our body. These include foods that are high in omega 3 fatty acids and other healthy fats.

Common examples of these fats include salmon, trout, avocado and yoghurt. Fish is remarkably high in these fats and it helps you in weight loss. And avocados are filled with lots of fat, but this fruit has proven to be beneficial for weight loss and dieting.

However, keep in mind that dairy products such as yoghurt are only to be consumed at their most natural form. That is, original full fat yoghurt is best for your body instead of refined low-fat yoghurt. This has been widely researched by PubMed Central, a database from National Institute of Health.

Obesity And Weight Gain is Only Due To Genetics

This is a very widely known myth that if we are fat or if we are gaining weight continuously, it is only because of our family’s genes and that there is nothing we can do about it. However, this is also false.

Although evidence shows that genetics plays a role in obesity and a person’s BMI (Body Mass Index) and weight, it does not account for the continuous increase in weight gain and obesity.

This is another myth invented by lazy people to make up excuses for weight gain and obesity. However, it is incorrect, and obesity always leads you to harmful diseases so it is clear that it is not because of a person’s specific DNA or genes.

There are many clinical dietary checkups to determine your body type and the working of your metabolism and those medical tests are far more reliable than the simple habit of blaming your genes.

A Calorie Is A Calorie

Most of the weight loss diet plans we find online advise us to implement and exert this concept. This myth is extracted from the ignorant belief that if you are taking a specific number of calories in a day, it won’t matter where you consume those calories from.

So, it is quite easy for these websites and diet guides to tell you that all you have to do is only eat up to 800 or 1000 calories a day, you can eat anything you want.

It is a biological fact that an average woman needs to eat 2000 calories a day to maintain her weight and 1500 calories if she wants to lose a pound every week. And an average man needs to eat 2500 calories to maintain weight and 2000 to lose weight. Now, as you can see, the average necessity is 1500 and 2000 for women and men, respectively.

However, these diets reduce your calorie intake to 800 to 100 which can be harmful and might lead to exhaustion and fatigue. On the other hand, not all calories are the same. Calories you consumed from fruits and vegetables will be more lasting and will sustain you throughout the day as compared to calories obtained from candy and junk food.

Also, calories from foods enriched with protein and fiber are more beneficial to weight loss instead of foods with unhealthy carbs and fats.

And it is medically proven that lean protein from meat, chicken and fish is ideal for a weight loss regime. Provided the meat isn’t fried or processed. Again, it is the same principle that tells us to limit the amount of our food instead of the nature of it.

So, what should we be considering during weight loss? Instead of these myths, it is more helpful to carefully consider the nature and quality of the foods you are eating. Avoiding processed, refined and junk food is the best way to go and you should replace it with whole wheat foods, healthy fats, proteins, fruits, and vegetables.

If you are trying to lose weight or maintain it even, you probably have heard of these myths, especially when they’re hard to avoid on social media and online. These myths can often overwhelm you and put you in a lot of stress. But no worries, weight loss is a natural and long process and now we have cleared up these myths for you to avoid.

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Muhammad Usman

2 thoughts on “6 Overrated Weight Loss Myths: Fact Check”

  1. This post has helped me so much! thank u for clarifying my doubts 🙂
    u have amazing writing power and u’ve convinced me to let go of these myths forever

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