With Christmas right around the corner, there’s going to be a lot of people worrying if they’ll fit in their newest outfits for the upcoming parties. Before you go on a crash diet, keep in mind that rushing the dieting process can make you gain more weight.
According to Rhiannon Lambert, a leading Harley Street nutritionist, you must resist the urge to go on a crash diet because aside from making you fatter, it can cause other health problems. A crash diet often involves “severely cutting back on calories,” with some diets suggesting the intake of only 1,000 or 500 calories daily. These diets are often done together with other “quick fixes” such as juice cleanses and diuretics or taking diet pills. (Related: Do’s and Don’ts of Healthy Weight Loss And Healthy Dieting.)
Keep in mind these four reasons why crash dieting isn’t ideal:
Loss of water weight – Lambert warned, “Through these diets, fast weight loss can happen and usually more than two pounds can be lost in the first week.” She continued, “However, a lot of this “lost weight” is actually water weight, which is due to the glycogen that is burnt for energy as the restricted diet is not bringing in enough energy for the body, so it has to use its stores.”
Nutritional deficiencies – Because low-calorie diets can be restrictive, your body might not be getting the key nutrients it needs. Low-calorie diets can also cause sodium and potassium deficiencies. These electrolytes are necessary for nerve and muscle function, and they help regulate the beating of the heart. A lack of these nutrients can increase the risk of a heart attack.
Muscle loss and slower metabolism – Researchers at Maastricht University in the Netherlands studied data from 25 people that were put into two groups. One group went on a five-week diet with only 500 calories daily while the other group went on a 12-week diet with 1,250 calories per day. In the group of low-calorie dieters, 18 percent of weight loss was due to muscle loss compared to 7.7 percent in the other group. While dieting, you must preserve muscle mass because this boosts your resting metabolism, which makes your body burn more calories.
You could regain the weight you lose – Aside from being caused by the water weight you lose, you can regain weight due to willpower, or a lack of it. Yo-yo dieting, or what experts call “weight cycling,” can be hard to maintain, with many dieters losing willpower and regaining the weight they lost.
Slow and steady helps you lose weight
The National Health Service (NHS) advised that the healthier alternative to crash dieting is to try and lose at least one to two pounds (.45 to .91 kilograms) weekly. Lambert adds that dieters need to remember that to keep the excess weight off, one must lose it via a slow and steady way.
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She added that by losing weight gradually, there’s a higher chance that dieters will make permanent lifestyle changes, which often include having a healthier relationship with food and learning skills for mindful eating. Lambert also suggests eating more fruits and vegetables, choosing complex carbohydrates over simple carbohydrates, and avoiding sugary processed foods.
If you’re working out and doing strength-training exercises, the numbers on the weighing scale might not drop as fast. This is because you’re burning fat while you’re building muscle at the same time, and muscle weighs more than fat. Experts like The Body Coach suggests not obsessing over your weight and paying more attention to how your clothes fit or monitoring progress photos.
Tips to lose weight before the holidays
Here are some natural tips to try if you want to lose weight before Christmas:
Maintain regular bowel movements – Eat more fiber to help maintain your bowel movements. If you don’t poop regularly, you’re going to be carrying around some extra weight.
Eat dark chocolate for dessert – Instead of a sugary treat, opt for some dark chocolate, which also promotes heart health.
Avoid junk food – If you really want to lose weight, don’t snack on chips or a burger. Eat some veggie sticks or an apple instead.
You can read more articles about weight loss and how to maintain a healthy diet by looking at Slender.news.