5 Weight Loss Myths

Nutritionist By Jessica Sepel
Jessica Sepel is a qualified Sydney nutritionist, author, health blogger, and wellness coach. She has her Bachelor's in Health Science, Public Health from Macquarie University, and as a regular contributor to Vogue Australia, mindbodygreen, and a variety of international publications, she continues to expand her JSHealth brand to savvy women who want to prioritize wellness in their busy lives.
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So many confusing health messages are making us fatter and sicker! My weight shifted when I learned the truth about how my metabolism works.

Here are a few of my favorite myths about weight loss and what you can do about them:

1. Artificial sweeteners help you lose weight. 


I'm referring to products such as diet sodas, sugar-free gum, Equal, Splenda, NutraSweet, Sweet-n-Low, and most energy drinks.

Fake sugars are both toxic and addictive, and among the worst things for our health. Your body gets confused and reacts in two detrimental ways: (1) As your body gets used to them, you crave sweet things, but your satiety hormones are suppressed. You don't recognize when you are full or satisfied; or (2) Your body experiences insulin spikes due to the sweeteners that lead to metabolic disorders, weight gain and long-term deregulation of appetite.

Sweeteners ultimately cause toxic buildup (they are chemicals!), and hormonal imbalance. They also stimulate appetite and enhance mood disorders.

Instead of using sweeteners, here are some simple swaps to sweeten foods and drinks naturally.

2. Exercise is the key to weight loss. Workout for hours and you'll get the body of your dreams! 


I used to exercise twice a day, and I think it made me fatter.

Over exercising can make you hungrier! It can also cause adrenal exhaustion, which leads to hormonal imbalance. A tired and exhausted body will encounter all kinds of hormonal havoc, including fat storage.

The trick is to exercise less often but smarter.

You can change your body's hormones and burn off fat in a short amount of time by doing high intensity interval training, and deep muscle resistance exercises. To learn more about this, check out Jonathan Bailor's Smarter Science of SlimHe's an expert on this topic!

3. Low fat/fat-free is the way to go because FAT will make you FAT. 


Fat free foods are usually loaded with sugar! (They have to replace the good tasting fat with something don’t they?) Your body isn't great at making use of simple sugars, and any extra sugar that the body can't use is stored as fat!

I used to be terrified of fat. I'd fret over every almond I consumed. If I ate the avocado in the salad I'd feel ridiculous guilt and was sure that my body weight would go up in kilos!

Don't be afraid of fat. Your body needs the good fats! These are best found in avocado, flaxseed, olive oil, coconut oil, nuts and seeds and oily fish such as salmon.

Good fats are essential to give your body energy and to support cell growth. They also help protect your organs (your heart!) and help your body absorb nutrients and produce important hormones, too.

Good fats also keep you fuller longer and promote blood sugar stabilization. Without this, we'd miss out on vital nutrients (such as vitamins A, D and E) and what are known as essential fatty acids (Omega 3s), which are needed to curb all kinds of conditions such as heart disease, cancers, immune system deficiencies, arthritis, skin complaints, PMS and menopausal symptoms.

Do you know what happened when I started to eat the good fats? My skin started to glow. I lost all the excess weight. My moods lifted. My bowels regulated and my cravings subsided.

Avoid the ugly trans fats, and remember to eat in moderation.

4. If you eat fewer calories than you burn, you'll lose weight.


Just like we cannot control our cardiovascular system, we cannot control our metabolism. It's far more complex than calories in, calories out. Life-sustaining functions are automatically regulated by the body.

This works in a simple machine, like a car engine, but does it work in human beings?

Probably not. The human body is so complex that if you eat whole foods, you'll get more nutrients and you'll be more likely to feel full longer.

Focusing on the quality of foods will enhance the effectiveness of your metabolism. When we put the wrong quality of food into our body, it becomes hormonally clogged and the level of fat in our body rises.

5. Eat three meals a day and don't snack. 


We must eat every three to four hours to keep our blood sugar levels stable.

In my opinion, stable blood sugar is the key to good weight. This help curb cravings, speed up metabolism, and control your mood!

When we don’t eat for long periods of time, your body thinks its being starved and then goes into survival mode. (Your body is so clever!) So what will it do to survive? Hold onto something, anything…. what does it hold onto? Fat!

Does that clear a few things up? Wishing you a healthy week!

Affirmation of the week: I naturally make choices that are good for me, I take loving care of my body and my body responds with health, an abundance of energy and a wonderful feeling of well-being. 

Jessica Sepel
Jessica Sepel
Jessica Sepel is a qualified Sydney nutritionist, author, health blogger, and wellness coach. She...
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