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Fast diet myths debunked

Need to lose a few pounds quickly? With so many fast-fix fad diets on the market, it’s easy to find one to try, but will you have the success you desire?

Woman on a diet eating salad

We’ve all been there. Those extra pounds have snuck up on you, and now your favourite pair of skinny jeans are a lot skinnier than you remember! So what’s a girl to do? It’s easy to get caught up in the hype of a fast fix — after all, we’re bombarded with lots of diet plans that promise to help us lose weight quickly and easily — but where do we draw the line between the hype and the facts? Here are five common fad diet myths — debunked!

Myth #1: Ultra-low-calorie diets are a great way to lose weight

Sure. If a person wants to lose a few pounds of water weight, trigger their body to start burning as much muscle as fat, feel lethargic and light-headed, then regain the weight as quickly as it was lost, then an ultra-low-cal fad diet is the way to go. For the rest of us who would like to lose the pounds without the negative side effects, a reduced (not ultra-low) calorie diet plan is a better answer.

Myth #2: Carbs are the enemy

The poor carbohydrate… It gets the boot from so many weight loss plans! But the truth is that carbs translate to energy that we need to fuel our body. Another truth is that all carbs aren’t created equally. You can achieve realistic weight loss goals when you forgo the refined or processed carbs such as cookies and white bread and instead choose good-for-you carbs like fruit and whole-grain products.

Myth #3: Water, more water, and don’t forget the H2O

Yes, drinking water is important regardless of your diet plan, but it’s not the end all, be all of weight loss. Keeping sufficiently hydrated with water will fill you up, work to eliminate toxins and help your internal organs function efficiently, but quaffing excessive amounts isn’t necessary. A common recommendation is to drink eight glasses of water per day to stay healthy.

Myth #4: A calorie is a calorie, no matter when it’s consumed

Well, sort of. A calorie is a unit of energy, and as such is the same regardless when you eat it, but are you ready for the “however”? However, calories consumed earlier in the day have a better chance of being used before becoming a reserve of energy — a.k.a. fat. So I guess mom was right about having a good breakfast! Be sure to spread your caloric input throughout the day and especially throughout the first half of it.

Myth #5: A quick fad diet is all I need

To keep it simple, the response is no! To lose weight you need to expend more calories than you consume, so the best way to bump up your weight loss is to incorporate exercise into your plan. Unfortunately one of the downfalls of a quick-fix diet is that it may wreak havoc on your energy level and leave you feeling fatigued. But a balanced, reduced calorie diet can meet your nutritional needs and fuel you up for a full and energetic day!

Regardless of the diet plan you choose to follow, please consult with your health care provider to make sure the diet plan is right for you.

More on diet and health

Signs of an eating disorder in an adult
Late-night eating: How bad is it?
Losing weight, “diet”-free

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