There is a lot of misconceptions around dieting, some supposed fitness experts have claimed that by simply cutting your calories by say 1,000 calories a day, you will have approximately 30,000 less calories a month, and over the cause of the a year that 30,000 deficit equals hundreds of pounds, if you rely on maths it sounds simple right?
But unfortunately our bodies are not so mathematical, and this renders low calorie diet plans useless, in fact worse than useless you can become more fat after one than before, since low calorie diets are known to reduce your metabolism (or metabolic rate), by at least 20-30% which means after prolonged low calorie dieting, you can eat very little food and still not lose weight
As well as this they make you lose muscle because your body goes into “starvation” mode, and so in order to decrease energy expenditure, breaks down muscle since, all muscle is metabolically active tissue (also known as Gluconeogenesis), so if the low diet does not include exercise approximately 40 – 50% of the amount of weight you lose will be muscle, and on most low diets 75% is not fat, it is in fact water weight, muscle and glycogen.
If this wasn’t bad enough they also decrease activity of fat burning enzymes and increase activity of fat-storing enzymes (Lipoprotein Lipase) which means you will get fatter because your body is making it easier to store fat.
There is also a decrease in output of the thyroid hormone which results in a decrease in your metabolism (Metabolic rate) which in turn equals fewer calories burned, while at the same time, there is an increase in your appetite and cravings as your body wants you to eat more food.
Very low calorie diets also decrease your energy and work capacity, as you may find yourself tired, lethargic and unable to sustain high levels of activity or intense workouts, according to Dr Lawrence Lamb, “There is a direct relationship between calories consumed and the physical work a person can do”.
At the end of the day if you do manage to actually lose weight and most people do, initially, you will gain it back when your body adjusts and tries to conserve energy), so you hit a plateau, stop lose weight even though you’re eating the same calories, you will then get frustrated and probably quit the diet as its “not working” or you do what some people do and cut calories even further, either way you will get Rebound weight gain and end up the same size or bigger than when you started.
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