There's an abundance of weight loss information available these days so how do we know what to believe?
It is understandably confusing.
The biggest problem with all the information is that it's positioned from a place of authority, usually with special interests behind it. This takes the intuitive nature about our foods and bodies away from us.
Moving back to understanding what works specifically for us as individuals is paramount in our weight loss and maintenance efforts.
Here are some of the common fallacies surrounding weight loss:
1. Calories OUT must equal (or exceed) calories IN.
No. Calorie tallies are a small part of weight loss and maintenance, when the whole premise shouldn't be based on burning more calories than you take in. This leads to obsessively counting calories — which are not all created equal — then to restricting calories.
Calorie restriction puts your body into stress mode which raises your cortisol level and in turn sends all your other hormones to an unbalanced state. In stress mode, your body will preserve those calories by storing them as fat for later use.
Instead, increase your nutrient-dense foods and ditch the calorie dense ones. You won't have to keep count.
2. Your life will be perfect when you lose weight.
No. Ask yourself how you'll feel when you lose your extra weight? Your answers may surprise you. These answers are the clues to why your body is holding on to what you want it to get rid of.
Striving toward the way you want to feel will increase chemical neurotransmitters sometimes called happy hormones. This starts the process of balancing your hormones, which will help your body release unnecessary weight.
You have to do the internal work for the external benefits to shine through. Losing weight won't magically make all your problems go away. It won't find you a man, or make you happy, or improve how people see you at work.
You have to love yourself as you are, from the inside out. Validate yourself from the inside, not by outside opinions or standards. Then and only then will your weight start to normalize and you will begin to feel the way you want to feel.
3. There's only one right diet and just one way to lose weight.
No. We all have different bodies, heritages, ages, blood types and body types, and what works for me most likely won't work for you. All this should be accounted for as well, as any possible illnesses or diseases that may affect the results you're after.
4. Products and supplements will help you lose weight faster.
No. You have to give your body what YOU need: enough nourishing food and proper hydration. Mental and emotional happiness, positive self-esteem and pleasure are the keys to weight loss and reaching your ideal weight. Stress, internal and external, has to go.
5. Restriction and deprivation mean more pounds dropped.
No. Restriction and self-deprivation don't work on anything past the short term effects and that is a very miserable path. "No pain, no gain" is lame and our bodies respond much better with a little love and kindness. If you're nourishing your body, mind and spirit the way you need to, there isn't any reason you can't have a crazy day once in a while.
You are human. Enjoy life and enjoy your nourishment.
Here's the key: when you have donuts or booze, don't eat the whole box or drink the whole bottle. Slow down and taste what you're consuming, savor it, enjoy it. And that goes for all nourishment.
Nourishment and caring for yourself should be PLEASURABLE, not a dreaded chore. Feel good about what you are doing. When you let go of shame about your appearance then your body will start to let go of the extra weight.
Positive begets more positive.
6. Willpower is the key to success.
No. Replace that with positive motivation. “If I only had the will power, I could just lose weight.” No.
This goes hand-in-hand with deprivation. By saying this, you're starting from a place of failure.
Your willpower isn't the key to losing weight. It is a 100% guaranteed way not to reach your goal, because it's rooted in deprivation and not in nourishment.
Motivation to improve your health, to do something positive for your body, is a much more effective mindset for life and for trying to reach our goals.
What works: Consistency, being accountable to yourself and your body, enjoyable and fun physical activities, and not depriving yourself of real nourishment emotionally, mentally, physically and spiritually.
You are perfect!
Strive to be the best you through your personal evolution and not to be the thin emaciated vision of "beauty" that the public requires.
"Thin" is not necessarily healthy and "perfect." This is a fallacy perpetrated by a crazy ideal set forth by media and companies that have something to gain from you feeling less than “perfect”.
If there are things you want to change on the outside, you need only to start with your insides. You have the tools within yourself to get the job done.