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Common Diet Myths

Updated on August 5, 2014

Most Common Myths

Crash diets are a good way of losing weight.

Even if these diets are always praised as a fast solution for weight loss, they are not a good way to consistently reach or maintain a healthy weight. First, these diets mostly target a short period of time. One certainly loses the promised three or five pounds in the end but, this is often only water weight which quickly gets restored in the body.

Secondly, you do not make permanent changes to your diet, you just eat less in a short term. The result: the body becomes accustomed to the low food intake and adjusts its metabolism in order to implement an emergency state. It consumes less energy. Then you start eating normally again after the diet, the body however retains its emergency state. You burn fewer calories than before the diet, but take back more calories. The dreaded yo-yo effect strikes: you not only weigh as much as before the diet, but even more.

Skipping breakfast saves calories

Many people think they are saving calories if they forgo their breakfast. This is a big mistake, as researchers at the University of Minneapolis found out. The scientists had observed for over five years, around 2,000 young people. Some young people left the house without breakfast each morning, the others ate breakfast every day.

The astonishing result: those who always ate breakfast weighed on average 2.3 pounds less than the no breakfast group. Why is this so? If you do not eat breakfast, your metabolism is not stimulated, nor does the energy consumption of your body function properly. You also suffer after a few hours from food cravings. Then you eat a lot more than you have "saved" through the breakfast waiver.

While on a diet you cannot eat anything sweet.

Snacks while on a diet must not only be of vegetables and fruit strips. Rather, one should also incorporate sweets and also eat your favorite food albeit in moderation. Because if you prohibit any treats, then you only increase the crave over time. When a craving attack strikes, you then eat uncontrollably much more at once, as opposed to a small portion every now and then.

It helps in weight loss if you eat interim meals.

A common advice for dieters is to eat three main meals - plus two small snacks. Supposedly this method helps prevent cravings. At the same time it also stimulates your metabolism.

The problem is that after each meal your body produces insulin. If insulin is circulating in your body, you can not burn fat. For that reason alone it is better to eat only three times per day. You would also need to count the calories you take in three meals, spread over five meals, so as not to add to daily calorie intake while snacking. Only very few people actually do this, most eat much more and then wonder why they are not losing weight.

Diet chocolate contains fewer calories and reduced fat.

That would be too good to be true - but almost all types of chocolate that are offered as a diet version contains as much fat and calories as the full type of chocolate. The real difference is in the sugar. For the manufacture of diet chocolate a fruit glucose is used, called fructose. This sounds at first glance, much healthier, as it is the sugar found in fruits and vegetables.

But we now know that fructose, consumed in excess, is even unhealthier than glucose - the sugar in normal chocolate. Fructose is converted into body fat much faster than glucose and has low satiation levels. As a result, you eat more. In addition, fructose raises mainly in men the LDL-cholesterol levels. So you're better off eating a normal piece of chocolate every now and then.

Problem zone reduction

Exercise is always good, but it is not true that you eliminate fat, for example with a butt-thigh exercise in these parts of the body. It is determined in your genes where in your body the fat reserves are accumulated for bad most times. It is there that the excess fat is first deposited. And in "famine" your body saves up these reserves as a last alternative. With these exercise programs for personal "problem zones" the areas only get toned and streamlined.

A vegetarian diet to stay slim.

This can not be generalized, because you can turn every vegetable into a rich calorie by baking with fatty cheese or cream sauces, rich in calories. Nuts and seeds are also rich in unsaturated fats and therefore not necessarily conducive to a slim line when snacked in large quantities. But why are most vegetarians slim anyway, because they usually have a generally healthy lifestyle with little alcohol, varied diet and plenty of exercise.

You can freeze away your extra pounds

Surely you know that you consume more energy when you are cold. If it's cold outside, your body must burn more calories to maintain it's optimum working temperature of 37 ยบ C. Sounds good, right? Then you should be able to lose weight, by simply turning off the heater.

But that's not the case. On the one hand, this additional energy consumption is very low. And second when you freeze, you automatically have more hunger and thirst. For your body does not know that you freezing on purpose, and will therefore try to protect from the cold with an extra layer of fat. You thus achieve the exact opposite.

Sex helps to reduce weight

The game of love is said to be the best method to lose weight. But even that sounds too good to be true. An average person consumes in 15 minutes of sex, only about 35 calories. If you want to lose weight, try vacuuming or cleaning the windows - because your body burns about 43 calories in the same period of time.

Fasting leads to sustainable weight loss

If you consequently fast, you lose weight fast. But this loss is not permanent - if you do not rigorously change your diet after fasting. Otherwise the same thing happens as with a crash diet: you lapse back into your old diet - and quickly add weight. Intense fasting can lead to a lack of vital substances - which can be dangerous to your health.


Neither crash diets nor extensive lovemaking helps when it comes to getting rid of those extra pounds: in order to permanently keep them abay maintian a healthy lifestyle, eat a balanced diet and exercise regularly.


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    • coki252000 profile image

      coki252000 6 years ago

      Wow that's a substancial amount of weight. Congratulations on the discipline and the long time success. Thanks for the great tip :)

    • rjsadowski profile image

      rjsadowski 6 years ago

      A lot of good advice. I suggest simply eliminating 500 calories per day from what you mormally eat and you will lose a healthy one pound per week. By doing this over a three year period (with additional similar reductions as I lost weight) I took off 125 lbs. and kept it off for 30 years. I talk about it in my hubs.