Dieting makes you Fat

Why is it that when most people go on a diet they tend to put more weight back on after they have finished the diet than when they started.

There are many reasons for this frustration; hopefully I can help you to understand why this happens so that you can make better decisions in the future about how best to tackle the “battle of the bulge”.

First of all whenever you go on a restrictive diet your body senses that you are trying to starve it. It is not getting it’s usual supply of energy so it automatically goes into survival mode by changing many working functions that will preserve energy and maintain or increase your weight over time.

If you suddenly restrict your energy intake by as little as 10% your body will counter that with a 20% reduction in your metabolic rate. This can happen with in the first 24 hours. Your body lowers the rate at which you use energy for any given task and general bodily functions so that you do not perish. It has no idea that you plan to stop losing weight once you reach your goal weight, it just senses that it is losing valuable energy needed for survival.

Many weight loss diets that decrease food especially carbohydrates work by decreasing your glycogen stores. [The storage form of carbohydrates] Each gram of glycogen holds 3 times its weight in water so the majority of weight you lose is water and not fat.

Your brain and nervous tissue rely solely on glucose [carbohydrates] for energy, so when restricted muscle tissue is broken down to produce glucose. Muscle tissue is what burns fat so the less you have the less fat you can burn. Muscles are like your engines the more you diet the smaller your engines get and the less energy you will burn to lose weight. It is just like a car, a smaller engine will get more kilometers per litre than a larger more powerful engine.

Your body has remarkable survival abilities and will also resist your weight loss attempts by increasing your appetite. Even when you regain the lost weight it will keep going so that you store a little bit more incase next time you threaten it again, sort of like an insurance policy.

It will increase the activity levels of the fat storing enzymes so that you will store more fat than usual and they won’t bother to stop once you’ve finish the diet either. They’ll just keep storing for that rainy day. Your body will even increase the percentage of food absorbed from the small intestines. Dieting makes a difficult job an impossible one.

Hopefully you can see the difficulties and the reasons why only 1 in 20 people is successful at losing weight through dieting. Losing weight is not really that complex, but it does takes a lot of discipline and a lifetime commitment to a healthy lifestyle. Your body will always reflect the shape of what it is currently doing, in other words there is no point going on a diet for a couple of weeks and then returning to your current lifestyle because your old shape and weight will return with vengeance.

Learn to be patient and make simple healthy changes to your current eating plan that you can maintain for a lifetime. Increase your activity levels to include a minimum of 30-60 minutes of moderate intensity activity such as walking on a daily basis.

You may not lose 10 kilo’s in 3 weeks but in 6 to 12 months I guarantee you will weigh less, look and feel better than if you continue to yo-yo diet yourself to weight gain.