The Big Picture of Permanent Fat loss
Most people who read my articles and e-books know me like a science guy who loves to quote studies and apply research to everyday problems like weight loss, bodybuilding, and other health/fitness related topics. However, sometimes you have to step back from the science and look the big picture to help you bring people back in focus, so they can start to see the forest for the trees, as they say.
For most people reading this article, finding a powerful diet that works most of the time must seem as complicated as nuclear physics. It is not, but there are a bewildering amount of choices for diets on the market. High fat or no fat? High carbohydrate or no carbohydrate? Low protein or high protein? To make matters worse, there are a million variations and combinations to the above diet scenarios to increase the confusion. It appears endless and causes many individuals to throw up their hands in frustration and give up. In this article I will make an effort to change all that.
There are a few general guidelines, suggestions, and ways of viewing a diet plan program that will allow you decide, once and for all, if it’s eating healthily for you. You may not always like things i have to say, and you should be under no illusions this really is another quick fix, “lose 100 lbs. in 20 days,” guide of some sort or other. However, if you are fed up with being confused, sick and tired with taking the weight off only to put it back on, and tired of wondering how to take the very first steps to deciding good nutrition for you that will result in permanent weight loss, then this is the article that may change your life…
Does what you eat pass “The Test”?
What is the the biggest reason is diets fail long-term; above all else? The number one reason is…drum roll…too little long term compliance. The numbers also .; the vast majority of people who slim down will regain it — and often exceed what they lost. You knew that already didn’t you?
Yet, what are you doing to avoid it? Here’s another reality check: virtually any diet you pick which follows the fundamental concept of “burning” more calories then you definitely consume — the received well “calories in calories out” mantra — can cause you to lose weight. To some extent, they all work: Atkins-style, no carb diets, low-fat high carb diets, many fad diets — it simply does not matter in the short term.
If the goal is to lose weight quickly, then make a choice and follow it. I guarantee you will lose some weight. Studies generally find any of the commercial weight loss diets are certain to get approximately the same level of weight off after Half a year to a year. For example, a recent study found the Atkins’ Diet, Slim-Fast plan, Weight Watchers Pure Points program, and Rosemary Conley’s Eat Yourself Slim diet, were all equally effective. (1)
Other studies comparing other popular diets have learned to essentially the same conclusions. As an example, a study that compared the Atkins diet, the Ornish diet, Weight Watchers, and The Zone Diet, found the crooks to be essentially the same in their ability to take weight off after twelve months. (2)
Recall some tips i said about the the biggest reason is diets fail, the industry lack of compliance. The lead researcher of this recent study stated:
“Our trial discovered that adherence level instead of diet type was the principal predictor of weight loss”(3)
Translated, it is not which diet they chose as such, but their ability to actually adhere to a diet that predicted their weight loss success. I could just see the hands rising now, “but Will, some diets have to be better than others, right?” Are a few diets better then others? Absolutely. Some diets are healthier then others, some diets are better at preserving muscle mass, some diets are better at suppressing appetite — there are numerous differences between diets. However, while most of the popular diets will last taking weight off, what’s abundantly clear is always that adhering to the diet is a vital aspect for keeping the body weight off long term.
Exactly what is a diet?
A diet is a short term strategy to slim down. Long term weight loss may be the result of an alteration in lifestyle. We’re concerned with life long weight management, not quick fix fat loss here. I don’t such as the term diet, as it represents a short term try to lose weight vs. changing your lifestyle. Want to lose a lot of weight quickly? Heck, I am going to give you the information on how to accomplish this here and now for no charge.
For the following 90 to 120 days eat 12 scrambled egg-whites, one whole grapefruit, plus a gallon of water twice per a day. You will lose a lot of weight. Will it be healthy? Nope. Will the load stay off when you’re done with this diet and therefore are then forced to go back to your “normal” way of eating? Not a chance. Will the weight you lose come from fat or will it be muscle, water, bone, and (hopefully!) some fat? The purpose being, there are many diets out there that are perfectly able to dig up weight off you, however, if considering any eating plan designed to lose weight, you should ask yourself:
“Is this a means of eating I can follow long term?”
Which brings me to my test: I call it the “Can I eat this way for the rest of my life?” Test. I know, it does not exactly roll off your tongue, nevertheless it gets the point across.
The lesson this is: any nutritional plan you choose to lose weight must be a part of a lifestyle change you’ll be able to follow — in one form or another — forever. Which is, if it’s not a way of eating you’ll be able to comply with indefinitely, despite you get to your target weight, then its worthless.
Thus, many dietary fads you see out there are immediately eliminated, so you don’t have to worry about them. Now you ask , not whether the meals are effective in the short term, in case your diet can be followed indefinitely like a lifelong way of eating. Going from “their” way of eating back to “your” strategy for eating after you reach your target weight is often a recipe for disaster and the reason for the well established yo-yo dieting syndrome. Net profit: there are no short cuts, there isn’t any free lunch, simply a commitment to a life style change is going to keep the fat off long-term. I realize that’s not what many people want to hear, but it’s the truth, like it or otherwise not.
The statistics don’t lie: having the weight off is not the hardest part, keeping the weight off is! For a close look at the many well known fad/commercial diets out there, and you really are honest with yourself, and apply my test above, you’ll find most of them no longer appeal to you as they once did. What’s more, it brings me to an example that adds additional clarity: If you have diet A that will cause the most weight loss in the shortest period of time but is unbalanced and essentially impossible to adhere to long term vs. diet B, that can take the weight off with a slower pace, but now is easier to follow, balanced, healthy, and something you can comply with year after year, which is superior? If diet A gets 30 lbs away you in 30 days, but by next year you have gained back all 30 lbs, but diet B gets 20 lbs from you in the next 3 months with another 20 lbs A few months after that and the weight stays off by the end of that year, the better diet?
If you don’t know the answer to those questions, you have totally missed the point of this article and the lesson it’s looking to teach you, and are build for failure. Go back and focus this section again…Automagically, diet B is superior.
Teach a man to Fish…
A well known Chinese Proverb is — Give a man a fish and also you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish so you feed him for years.
This expression fits perfectly with all the next essential step in how to decide what diet plan you should follow to lose weight permanently. Will the diet program you are considering teach you the best way to eat long term, or should it spoon-feed you information? Will this diet rely on special bars, shakes, supplements or pre-made foods they offer?
Let’s do another diet A vs. diet B comparison. Diet A will supply you with their foods, along with their special drink or bars to eat, and tell you exactly when you should eat them. You will lose — say — 30 lbs in 2 months. Diet B will attempt to help you learn which foods you ought to eat, how many calories you have to eat, why you need to eat them, and often attempt to help coach you on how to eat as part of a total lifestyle change which will allow you to make informed decisions about your nutrition. Diet B leads to a slow steady weight loss of 8 -10 lbs per month for the next 6 months along with the weight stays off since you now know how to eat properly.
Remember fondly the Chinese proverb. Both diets will aid you to lose weight. Only one diet, however, will educate you on how to be self-reliant after your experience is finished. Diet A is simpler, to be sure, and causes faster weight reduction than diet B, and diet B takes longer and needs some thinking and learning on your part. However, when diet A is over, you are right back in which you started and have used no skills to fish. Diet companies don’t make their profits by instructing you on to fish, they create their money by handing which you fish so you must have used them indefinitely or get back to them after you gain all the weight back.
Thus, diet B is superior for letting you succeed where other diets failed, with knowledge gained you could apply long term. Diet programs that attempt to spoon feed that you simply diet without any try and teach you how to eat without their help and/or depend upon their shakes, bars, cookies, or pre-made foods, is the one other diet you can eliminate out of your list of choices.
Diet plans that offer weight loss by drinking their product for a lot of meals followed by a “sensible dinner;” diets that enable you to eat their special cookies for most meals along with their pre-planned menu; or diets that try and have you eating their bars, drink, or pre-made meals, have the diet A variety covered above. They’re simple to follow but destined to fail, long term. They all fail the “Can I eat this way for the rest of my life?” test, if you do not really think you can eat cookies and shakes throughout your life…Bottom line this is, if the nutritional approach you use to lose weight, be it coming from a book, a class, a clinic, or perhaps e-book, does not teach you the best way to eat, it’s a loser for very long term weight loss and it should be avoided.
The missing link for very long term weight loss
We have now make our method to another test to assist you choose a nutrition program for long term weight loss, and it does not actually involve nutrition. The missing link for too long term weight loss is exercise. Exercise is the essential component of long lasting weight loss. Many eating plans do not contain a training component, which means these are losers for long term weight-loss from the very start. Any program which includes its focus on weight-loss but does not include a comprehensive exercise plan is like buying a car without tires, or perhaps a plane without wings. Individuals who have successfully kept the weight off overwhelmingly have incorporated exercise into their lives, and the studies that appear to be at people who have successfully lost weight and kept it well invariably find they will were consistent with their diet and exercise plans. (4)
I’m not going to list every one of the benefits of regular exercise here, but regular exercise has positive effects on your own metabolism, allows you to eat more calories though be in a calorie deficit, and can help preserve lean muscle mass (LBM) which is essential to your quality of life and metabolism. The numerous health benefits of regular exercise are well known, so I won’t bother adding them here. The bottom line here is, (a) when you have any intentions to getting the most from your goal of shedding pounds and (b) want to keep it off long term, routine workouts must be an integral part of the load loss strategy. So, you’ll be able to eliminate any program, whether it’s book, e-book, clinic, etc. that doesn’t offer you direction and help with this essential section of long term weight loss.
Side Bar: A fast note on exercise:
Any workout is better than no exercise. However, like diet programs, not all exercise is built the same, and many people often choose the wrong form of exercise to maximize their efforts to shed pounds. For example, they will do aerobics exclusively and ignore weight lifting. Resistance training is an essential part of fat loss, as it builds muscle vital to your metabolism, increases Round the clock energy expenditure, and has health benefits beyond aerobics.
The various readers will also note I said weight-loss above not fat loss. Though I use the definition of ‘weight loss’ throughout this article, I truly do so only because it’s a familiar term it’s almost common knowledge. However, the true focus and purpose of a properly set up nutrition and exercise plan should be on fat reduction, not weight loss. A focus on losing weight, which can include a loss essential muscle, water, and also bone, as well as fat, is the wrong approach. Losing fat deposits and keeping the all important lean body mass (LBM), is the goal, and the method for achieving that can be found in my ebook(s) on trading, and is beyond the scope want to know ,. Bottom line: the type of exercise, level of that exercise, amount of time doing that exercise, etc., are crucial variables here when attemping to lose FAT while retaining (LBM).
Psychology 101 of lasting weight loss
Many diet programs out there don’t address the psychological element of why people fail to be successful with lasting weight loss. However, many studies exist which have looked at just that. In many respects, the psychological aspect is a vital for long term weight-loss, and probably the most underappreciated component.
Studies that compare the psychological characteristics of folks that have successfully kept the body weight off to people who have regained the weight, see clear differences between both of these groups. For example, one study that looked at 28 obese ladies who had lost weight but regained the extra weight that they had lost, when compared with 28 formerly obese girls that had lost weight and maintained how much for at least one year and 20 women using a stable weight in the healthy range, found the girls who regained the weight:
o Had a tendency to gauge self-worth in terms of weight and shape
o A lack of vigilance intended for weight control
o stood a dichotomous (black-and-white) thinking style
o Had the tendency to use eating to regulate mood.
The researchers concluded:
“The results suggest that psychological factors may provide some explanation as to why many people with obesity regain weight following weight loss success.”
This particular study was over on women, in order that it reflects some of the specific psychological issues for women who live — but make no mistake here — men likewise have their own psychological conditions that can sabotage their long term weight loss efforts. (6)
Additional studies on women and men find psychological characteristics such as “having unrealistic weight goals, poor coping or problem-solving skills and occasional self-efficacy” often predict failure with lasting weight loss. (7) On the other hand, psychological traits present with people who experienced successful lasting weight loss include “…an internal motivation to lose weight, support, better coping strategies and talent to handle life stress, self-efficacy, autonomy, assuming responsibility in everyday life, and overall more psychological strength and stability.” (8)
The key point of this section is always to illustrate that psychology plays a serious role in determining if folks are successful with lasting weight loss. If it’s not addressed contained in the overall plan, it may be the factor that makes or breaks making money online. This, however, isn’t an area most nutrition programs can adequately tackle and should not be expected to. However, better programs do generally try and help with motivation, goal setting, and support. You may notice yourself in the above lists in the groups that did not maintain their weight lasting, then know you will have to address those issues via counseling, organizations, etc. Don’t expect any weightloss routine to cover this topic adequately but do try to find programs that make an effort to offer support, goal setting, and resources that will keep you on track.
“There’s a sucker born every minute”
So just why don’t you see this form of honest information about the realities of long term weight loss more often? To be honest here, telling the truth isn’t best way to sell bars, shakes, books, supplements, and programs. Hell, if by a few miracle everyone who see this article actually followed it, and sent it on to millions of other people who actually followed it, makers of said products could possibly be in financial trouble quickly. However, additionally, they know — since the man said — “there’s a sucker born every minute,” therefore i doubt they will be kept up at night worrying about the effects that I, or this informative article, will have on their business.
How about we recap what has been learned here: the large picture realities of permanent fat loss and how you can look at a weight loss program and decide for yourself if it’s for you depending on what has been covered above:
o Permanent weight reduction is not about obtaining a quick fix diet, but making a commitment to life style changes offering nutrition and exercise
o Any fat burning plan you choose must pass the “Can I eat that way for the rest of my life?” test,
o The body weight loss program you choose should ultimately educate you on how to eat and stay self reliant so you can make informed long term choices about your nutrition.
o The load loss program you decide on should not leave you reliant on commercial bars, shakes, supplements, or pre-made foods, for your long term success.
o The extra weight loss program you ultimately choose must have an effective exercise component.
o The weight loss program you ultimately choose should attempt to assist with motivation, goal setting, and support, but cannot be a replacement for psychological counseling if needed.
I want to take this final section to include some additional points and clarity. First off, the above advice just isn’t for everyone. It’s not meant for those who really have their nutrition dialed in, like competitive bodybuilders and also other athletes who reap the benefits of fairly dramatic changes in their nutrition, like ‘off season’ and ‘pre-contest’ and so on.
The content is also not intended for those with medical issues who might be on a specific diet to treat or manage a specific condition. The article is intended to the average person who wants to log off the Yo-Yo diet merry-go-round forever. As that’s probably 99% of people, it will cover lots of people.
People should also not be scared off by my “you have to eat this way forever” advice. This does not mean you will be dieting throughout your life and have only starvation to look toward. What it does mean, however, is you will have to learn to eat properly despite you reach your target weight and that way of eating should not be huge departure from the method that you ate to lose the weight in the first place. Once you get in your target weight — and even your target bodyfat levels — you will go onto a maintenance phase which generally has more calories and choices of food, even the occasional treat, just like a slice of pizza or whatever.
Maintenance diets certainly are a logical extension of the diet you employed to lose the weight, but they are not in line with the diet you followed that place the weight on initially!