Myth Busting Nutrition
There is a huge amount of information on the internet regarding fat loss, this can often lead to a lot of confusion. Below we will try and dispel some myths regarding fat loss.An important point to make before we dive in, is everyone is different, nutrition is completely individual. What might work for one person, will be terrible for the next.
If someone makes a balck and white statement regarding nutrition, it is normally untrue, most of the time the correct answer should be ‘it depends’.
Carbs are the devil
Carbs have had a bad press for a few years now. People often associate increased carb intake with an increase in weight. In reality, as mentioned above, this is completely individual to the person. One person’s tolerance of high carb diets will be drastically different from the next person. Purely writing them off as bad, will forego energy levels, effectiveness of training, adherence to a healthy diet.
That Diet Doesn’t Work
All diets work for fat loss, from low carb diet to the cabbage soup diet. They will all make you lose fat, as you are restricting the number of calories you consume. Losing body fat is a simple equation of In Vs Out. If more is going in than is being burned, you will gain weight, conversely the opposite is true.
What you should view with a diet is two things, its sustainability and its health benefits.
If you can’t see yourself maintaining the diet long term, you may need to find yourself another strategy. Likewise, is your diet providing your body with all the nutrients it needs to thrive, if not, another strategy is needed.
It’s my genetics
Ask yourself this;
How strongly are you influenced by the availability of food?
Are you moderately overweight, but lose weight if you eat and exercise well?
Do you put on lost weight when you change your eating/exercise habits? For ex. the holiday season?
If you answered yes to any of the above questions, genetics is not the reason for your weight gain. There are definitely contributing genetic factors to obesity, however, for most people these are not relevant.
I’ll feel great if I can get down to xyz body fat percentage
Some people set a goal to look like a certain body shape or hit a certain body fat percentage. We are constantly exposed to people with the ‘perfect bodies’ on instagram or on the front of a magazine. What we don’t see is the reality behind these photos. Often these individuals will be airbrushed, feel terrible, have trouble with their hormones, this list goes on. Stop comparing yourself to instagram, it’s not real!
Sugar will kill you (or *insert over dramatic phrase)
The amount of detailed research that has been done on sugar is huge. Our advice would be like all things nutrition, eat it in moderation and you’ll be fine. Sugar does not need to be avoided completely. Anyone telling you not to eat fruit because of its sugar levels, should be shot. Fast acting carbs can be a really useful source of energy during long bouts of exercise.
Studies have shown that lots of people compensate for calories, if they have consumed sugary foods. However interestingly, the study showed sugary drinks were not compensated for, causing over calorie consumption. Be mindful of sugary drinks!
If your mate pipes up with advice about a fat loss hack that has worked wonders for them, realise that this is not a miracle cure. What works for you, will be completely individual, your biology and psychology are your sole characteristics.
My overall advice, after 11 years of helping individuals lose weight:
Recognise where and why it goes wrong, address those issues first.
Make small achievable changes to your diet, avoid trying to do everything at once.
The changes you do make, ensure they are things you enjoy.
Aim for sustainability, take a long term view.
Take a balanced approach,avoid extremes. I like a 80-20 rule.