Weight loss is a subject that we all have encountered at some point in our lives and whilst there is a lot of very helpful information on the subject there are also many myths that unfortunately are widely believed. This will not only lead to possible failure when trying to follow a weight loss plan, but ultimately they can also be very dangerous.
We have compiled some of the most common weight loss myths and the actual facts, so you can avoid them.
Myth: Fad diets are ideal for permanent weight loss
Fact: The problem with these types of diets is that whilst they help you to lose weight initially, generally they are not suitable for long term weight loss. They often require that you cut certain foods from your diet and or require that you limit your calorie intake, quite severely. This will lead to individuals tiring of them quickly and they will regain the weight that was lost.
They can also be regarded as an unhealthy way to lose weight. When you restrict or eliminate certain food groups from your diet, you can easily become deficient in essential vitamins and minerals that your body requires to function correctly.
Myth: Eating late at night will cause you to get fat
Fact: It does not matter what time of the day you eat. It is how and what you eat that really matters, and also the amount and level of exercise you do. It doesn't matter when you eat, if you are taking in more calories than you are burning then you will gain weight, be it day or night.
Myth: Eating celery and grapefruit will burn fat
Fact: Unfortunately no foods can burn fat, whilst some maybe significantly low in calories the truth is that eating them will not help you burn off excess fat. Although some foods that contain caffeine will help speed up your metabolism for a very brief period they do not in fact cause weight loss.
Myth: Herbal products used for weight loss are safe
Fact: A product that claims it is "natural" cannot automatically be considered safe to use. Generally the products are not tested significantly enough to prove they are safe or effective. There have been recent herbal products that have been banned in the US as they have been known to cause certain health problems and in extreme cases even death has occurred. Just be wary that although a product is herbal, this doesn't translate to being safe or effective.
Myth: Low-fat or fat-free meals are perfect for weight loss
Fact: Just because a product claims to be fat free, this is not necessarily a good food for weight loss. In many cases, fat free foods are filled with sugar and therefore although they may be lower in fat or contain zero fat they can often have high calorie content. The same works for low calorie foods, they often have high fat content. Generally when a manufacturer produces these foods, they often have to substitute the sugar or the fat with other products and often these products are artificial, and artificial food items are not good for weight loss.
Myth: Skipping meals is a good way to lose weight
Fact: This is one of the most common myths surrounding weight loss and although it seems that missing a meal will mean your intake of calories will be lower, studies have proven that those that eat regularly will in actual fact have lower weight than those that skip meals. This could be because when you skip a meal you will feel hungrier later on in the day and you will therefore eat more. By eating regular but small amounts throughout the day will control your appetite.
Myth: Using weights whilst exercising will make you bigger
Fact: Only intense strength training can build large muscles. For those who just want to lose weight, lifting weights is a great way to help you lose and maintain weight. It is widely known that muscle burns far more calories than body fat; therefore by carrying out strengthening exercises a few times a week will in fact help you to lose weight.