11 Things You Didn’t Know About Losing Weight

The 11 things you didn't know about losing weight

You probably have many strongly held belief about burning fat and losing weight. You probably also have your pet dieting plans. However, there are certain things which many thought are beneficial to losing weight but are not. Moreover, there are certain things which are believed to be bad for weight loss but it actually helps us lose weight and burn fat. Therefore, I have put together in this article the 11 things you didn’t know about losing weight.

The 11 things you didn’t know about losing weight fact 1 – Fruits can make you fats

All fruits contains glucose, so eating too much fruit can increase your glucose level and eating too much fruits that have a high glycemic load (GL) could lead to a higher than ideal amount of glucose. Ideally, only eating fruits with high dietary fiber and low GL is beneficial. So, the next time you are thinking of a fruits diet to lose weight, check the GL of the fruits that you intend to take. GL is directly calculated from its glycemic index (GI), divide by 100 multiplied by the number of grams of carbohydrates in a typical serving size.

Fruits that have low GL include Guava, which incidentally have one of the highest dietary fiber. Other fruits which you can consider includes lime, strawberry, apricot, grapefruit, lemon, nectarines, oranges, pear, watermelon, blueberries, peaches and plums, all of which have a GL of 5 or less.

One unusual fruit is the watermelon. Although it has a high GI of 72, but it only has a GL of 4.

The 11 things you didn’t know about losing weight fact 2 – Eating oil and fats can help you lose weight

Eating the right kind of fats can help you burn fat and lose weight. Take for example the case for fatty fishes like Salmon, Sardines and Mackerel. They contain high amounts of omega-3 fatty acids, which has been shown to reduce the stress hormone, cortisol, thereby increasing our ability to burn fat.

In addition, coconut oil is good for losing weight as it is mainly consist of MCT (medium chain triglycerides) which have been known to boost our metabolic rate. It also suppresses our apetite, leading us to eat less and therefore burn more fats and lose more weight.

The 11 things you didn’t know about losing weight fact 3 – Eating more meat burns up fat and weight with one caveat.

There are still many people who thinks that eating more meat makes us put on weight. Actually, it is the opposite. Meat is primarily protein. Eating more meat actually help us to burn more fat and lose weight. This is because, our body burns carbohydrates, then fat stores, then protein, in order to get the energy that it needs to function. Therefore, theoretically speaking, if we restrict our carbohydrates intake and take more meat, our body deprived of carbohydrates will burn up our fat stores for energy.

However, it is not totally without merit. That is why, i have added a caveat to this. The reason why in many cases, eating meat causes us to gain weight is not because of the meat but the accompanying sauces. The sauces are usually starchy, and therefore contains much carbohydrates. Therefore, in many instances, when we think that we are cutting back on our carbohydrates, we did not.

One cautionary note, though, is the fact, that our body is not designed to handle huge protein loads too. Too much protein (more than 2g per kg of body weight for prolonged periods), although, can help you lose weight very fast, may cause other health problems. Therefore, proceed with caution when going on a high protein diet.

The 11 things you didn’t know about losing weight fact 4 – Going to the Gym can make you put on weight

Most people think of going to the gym to lose weight. However, going to the gym actually help you gain a certain amount of weight. This is actually not a bad thing as it is mainly muscle mass as you work out. Coupled with a sensible diet plan, exercising at the gym can help you to firm up your body and get rid of the flabbiness caused by the weight loss.

On the other hand, many actually put on more weight besides muscle mass. This is because a lot of times we end up eating more than we should after exercising. This is one area where we need to have discipline, to ensure our weight loss efforts do not go to waste.

The 11 things you didn’t know about losing weight fact 5 – Eat up to 40% less food than usual and still feel full

We can do this by having food with higher dietary fiber and proteins and reduce intake of carbohydrates. Carbohydrates make us feel hungry whilst dietary fiber and proteins make us feel full for longer, thereby reducing the need to keep eating.

Also, tomatoes are known to reduce inflammation and water retention and reversing leptin resistance. Leptin is the protein that signals to our brain that we are full and stop eating. Therefore, eating more tomatoes can also allow you to eat less and still feel full.

The 11 things you didn’t know about losing weight fact 6 – Eat and sleep burns up fat, if done right

Ever heard the saying, “Eat and sleep and you become fat like a pig”. This is not strictly true. Many studies have shown the opposite to be true. Not sleeping enough cause more of the stress hormone Cortisol to be produced which will cause us to feel hungry all the time, resulting in us eating way too much. What is worse, is that the craving is for high salt and high sugar food, especially snacks.

Studies have also shown that to be in a deep sleep between the critical hours of 10pm-2am is critical to our fat burn efforts. During this period, if we are sleeping soundly, our body naturally turns to a fat burning machine on turbo. It is when the body will burn up our fat stores to repair the body cells that has been damaged throughout the day. There is a simple beverage which you could make in your own kitchen to allow you to have sound sleep by 10pm.

Fact 7 – Vegetables can make you fat too

Wait, how can vegetables make me fat, you might be wondering. The fact is that there are a lot of vegetables that are full of starchy carbohydrates. Eating too much of such vegetables would make you put on weight. Such vegetables include potatoes, corn, taro, yam, beans. These vegetables when cooked can contain more than 4 times the calories and carbohydrates compared to the non-starchy vegetables.

As such, consumption of such vegetables should be moderated. Otherwise, green leafy vegetables can be consumed at liberty.

Fact 8 – Low fat diet foods make you fat

Not all low fat diet foods are the same. It is important to look at the labels. A lot of packaged foods claim to be low fat, however, they also came with ingredients that is not so good. Examples are diet sugary drinks.

Fact 9 – Snacking often can help you lose weight

Snacks have long been associated with huge weight gain. This may be so for the high sodium, high sugar snacks. However, some snacks can be very good for weight loss. One of my favourite snacks is guava in apple cider vinegar. It is easy to make and kept refrigerated, I can snack anytime cravings set in.

Another one is the strawberry smoothie made with almond milk, another easy to make beverage.

Fact 10 – Just standing around can help you lose weight

Do you know that you burn double the calories standing compared to sitting down. So, make sure that you move around often and not keep sitting down.

Fact 11 – Eating less can help you gain weight

It is often thought that to lose weight, we have to “starve ourselves” on stringent diet after stringent diet. For a while, it seems to work, and we do lose some weight. However, soon after, we seem to put back on the weight loss and even more.

This is because cutting our food intake drastically is counter productive. When we suddenly reduce our intake drastically, the body protective system would kick in. Thinking that there is a shortage of energy supply, the body processes would slow down to preserve energy and therefore would slow down the metabolism. This is precisely the reason, why during drastic cut in food makes us sleepy, lethargic and dull-minded. It is the body natural reaction to less food.

Therefore, advice is to take it slowly first, eat less carbohydrates and more protein. As you lose weight and your body requires less calories to support it, then you reduce it further.

So, these are probably the 11 things you didn’t know about losing weight.

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The Mediterranean Diet For Losing Weight

The Mediterranean diet for losing weight

There is a recent interest in the Mediterranean Diet for losing weight. Strictly speaking, it is not so much a diet but a lifestyle of the people of Greece and southern Italy or the coastal areas along the Mediterranean Sea. However, the eating habits of this region was recently recognised as a diet good for heart health and was also noted that it may be beneficial for weight loss. I have therefore doing a review of it here with regards to its effectiveness in weight loss.

The lifestyle of the Greeks and Italians is to gather around and dining is more of a social gathering rather than just eating.

Vegetables

They consume high amounts of legumes like lentils and broad beans, tubers like radishes, turnips and carrots, green leafy vegetables like lettuce and root vegetable like potatoe, tomatoes and eggplants, nuts and seeds.

Fruits

They also partake a lot of fruits like apricots, peaches, nectarines and cherries, olives and in season figs and grapes too. Oil used is olive oil

Proteins from Fishes

Fishes like fresh sardines and anchovy are also eaten a lot with moderate diary products mainly of cheese and yogurt. The fish are usually grilled and drizzled with lemon juice. Wine consumption is moderate with a very low intake of non-fish meat products like pork, chicken, lamb and beef. Also rarely seen in cuisines of this region are processed foods high in salt and sugar.

Carbohydrates

For staples, pita, either white or whole grain and barley bread is consumed. Now let’s see how this eating habit does for your weight loss efforts.

How the Mediterranean diet for losing weight works

Firstly, Olive oil is high in healthy monounsaturated fats instead of the unhealthy polyunsaturated and trans fats found in other types of oil.

By plant based proteins

Secondly, studies have shown that eating a serving a day (about 130grams) of lentils and broad beans help study subjects lose 0.34 kg over a 6 week period.

The Mediterranean cuisines also uses plenty of tomatoes and eggplants.

By food that reverses leptin resistance

Tomatoes are known to reduce inflammation and water retention and reversing leptin resistance. Leptin is the protein that signals to our brain that we are full and stop eating. Therefore, tomatoes are great to prevent us from overeating and lower our calorie intake.

By high fiber and low calorie vegetables

Eggplants are high fiber and low calorie. Its high fiber can lower blood sugar by slowing rate of digestion and absorption of sugar in body. Slower absorption keep blood sugar levels steady.

It is also known to increase production of insulin which can lower blood sugar. The high fiber content also helps to keep you full longer resulting in lower calorie consumption.

By protein from fishes

Thirdly, their diet also consist of fresh sardines and anchovy. Each 100g of serving of sardines contains 125 calories, 7g of fat, 20g protein and 0 carbohydrates. Each 1 oz serving of anchovy contributes 37 calories, 1.4g fat and 5.8g protein. Both are rich in omega 3 fatty acids.

By taking low GL bread

White pita bread has a Glycemic index of 57, with the whole grain option being lower while the barley bread is even lower at 34.

By taking metabolism boosting fruits

As for the fruits eaten, all are highly beneficial for weight loss. Apricots is low in calories of roughly 48 calories per 100 grams and high fiber. Peaches are also low in calories and boost metabolism as tthey contain flavanoids like catechins and they also have high fiber content. A medium nectarine has 60 calories, 15 g fat and 2g fiber. Sweet and juicy, it provide a source of natural sugar without the need for added sugar. Cherries contain a hormone called melatonin which is what is produced when we are in deep sleep that sets our body fat burning into overdrive mode. They are also low in calories and contains vitamins that boost metabolism. Cherries are believed to be one of the most energy boosting fruits.

Based on the above observation, all the components seem to be tailored for weight loss. No wonder the recent craze on this diet. Although it was not originally meant as a diet plan, with just a few minor adjustments, it can be turned into a super effective weight loss diet. Some of the changes are for example to skip the pita and just take the barley bread instead, and skip the potatoes. In addition, non-fish meat products should be limited to skinless chicken breast and skip the other meats altogether.

Summary of the Mediterranean Diet for losing weight

With these changes, what your eating plan would be

a. Carbohydrates from green leafy vegetables and low to non existent starchy carbohydrates

b. Low fat diet mainly from cheese and yogurt

c. High protein from the nuts, seeds, sardines and anchovy

d. low calorie, high fiber and metabolism boosting fruits

e. Moderated consumption of wine which also helps

I would say, you can’t go much wrong following the above.

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