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Psychology-Based Tips for Weight Loss

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2934637015_d1803ca4a4_mThis is a guest post by Alison Gamble of psychologydegree.net

Psychology-Based Tips for Weight Loss The physical aspect of weight loss is simple, eat fewer calories than you burn, but the process of losing weight and keeping it off is often hindered by a slew of psychological roadblocks. In fact, obesity is a predominantly psychological problem.

After all, people who binge eat are not doing so because they are physically hungry – their minds are causing them to harm themselves with food to the point where their bodies are in physical pain. Thankfully, modern science has developed a few powerful methods to combat mental obstacles, and you don’t even need a psychology degree to reap their benefits.

The best time to thwart obesity is when the patient is young. With proper guidance, children can develop healthy eating habits that can help prevent drastic weight gain throughout their lives.

Unfortunately, it is much more difficult to create healthy eating habits with adults, since their eating patterns have been developed over many years of unhealthy eating behavior. In fact, adults may need cognitive-behavioral therapy to help them drop the weight and the employment of proven techniques like neuro-linguistic programming, self-monitoring and hypnosis.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy deals with the negative emotions that cause a person to eat too much food. Once these negative emotions are dealt with, the patient may find it easier to concentrate on the task at hand, taking those extra pounds off and keeping them off for good.

In fact, according to the American Psychological Association, one of the most successful cognitive-behavioral therapies for losing weight is self-monitoring. When using this method, the patient pays close attention to caloric intake, being careful not to exceed a certain number of calories in any given day and counter balances caloric intake with daily exercise. However to be most effective, self-monitoring must be practiced by the patient at least 75 percent of the time to achieve successful and long term weight loss.

Another big problem for overeater’s is instant gratification. They may feel the desire to eat an entire cheesecake, even though they are not hungry for it, because it will taste good for a few minutes. This desire for instant gratification has zero regard for the consequences of this destructive action and only serves to create a fleeting moment of pleasure.

Luckily, this behavior may be controlled with neuro-linguistic programming. According to Holistic Online, the purpose of neuro-linguistic programming is to convince the patient that the long term benefits of resisting instant gratification are worth much more than the taste of whatever food the patient is craving. Thus patients will learn that while the cheesecake may taste good during the moment, it won’t be worth the body damage and feelings of guilt that result from over eating.

Finally, some people attempt to use the principles of psychology to hypnotize themselves into being a healthier eater, but it is unclear whether or not weight loss method is actually effective. The Mayo Clinic reports that weight loss hypnosis has been neither scientifically proven nor disproven. In other words, this method of weight loss is mostly neutral. It However, appears that there are some merits to hypnosis. When coupled with another more effective technique, hypnosis may add an extra incentive to help get rid of at least a few pounds.

Clearly exercise and diet are the most important parts of weight loss, but following through on these things is easier said than done. Focusing only on the physical aspect of weight loss can lead to crash diets and drastic gains and losses. However psychology-based therapy can help the patient understand the true inner process of getting into an excellent physical condition and those special mental tools can be used throughout the patient’s lifetime.

Q and A Session For Everyday Health New Year New You Part Two

headerEveryday Healths expert’s answers and my replies.

1 ) We all make New Year’s resolutions, and often these resolutions involve weight loss or fitness goals. But many of us quickly lose traction and don’t achieve our goals.

What are the psychological and emotional reasons behind these failures?

Elisa Zied, MS, RD, CDN (elisazied.com)

Founder and Owner of Zied Health Communications, author of Nutrition at Your Fingertips

“So many of us fail to achieve our food, fitness, and weight goals simply because we’re often too hard on ourselves, expect perfection, and set hard-to-follow, unsustainable goals (for example, I’m cutting out sweets, or I’m not going to drink alcoholic beverages anymore).

Or perhaps we haven’t been to a gym in a while and instead of saying we’ll try to go twice a week, we set a goal to go five days a week or even every day.

There’s often such a big divide between where we are and where we think we need to be in terms of goals that it makes it tough, if not impossible, to achieve the goals we set for ourselves”.

Mark’s reply

I can totally relate and wholeheartedly agree with what is written here, sometimes when we are trying to do things we don’t even realise that we are sabotaging our own efforts.

Because we live in an instant gratification society sometimes, we set the bar too high which in turn can set us up for failure.

We can expect too much too soon sometimes, which isn’t a recipe for succeeding.

2 ) What is the biggest mistake people make when making a resolution? Are you setting yourself up for failure when you make a New Year’s resolution to lose weight or get fit?

Torey Jones, MS, RD, LDN (nutritiouslyhappy.com)

Clinical dietitian, Chicago, Ill.

The single biggest mistake that people make is trying to change too much, too fast. Achieving a healthy body or fitness level requires permanent lifestyle change. There is no quick fix and no pill to face the challenges of our McDonald’s-loving, TV-centric culture.

Aim to change just one small thing at a time. Focus solely on that change until it becomes a habit, an engrained part of your life. Let’s look at two New Year’s resolutions. One sets you up for failure, the other for success:

  • Resolution No. 1: I want to look good in a bathing suit by summer. Set this goal if you also want to bring pressure and self-criticism into the New Year!

This is too lofty a goal. Furthermore, appearance-oriented goals are often tied to feelings of shame and self-worth.

  • Resolution No. 2: I will add one serving (1 cup) of fruit to every breakfast. Could you achieve that? It would require some planning, but your chances are good. Moreover, it can be done without the culture shock and potential for guilt that comes along with hefty, 180-degree changes. Once this has become a habit, move on to your next attainable goals”.

Mark’s reply

Everything in the above reply is so true we don’t tend to put things into manageable small achievable goals. It tends to be looking at the whole big picture. We get overwhelmed by what we are trying to achieve, which can result in failure.

It’s all about baby steps which Torey emphasises so well, as the saying goes. How do you eat an elephant? A bit at a time.

Remember Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither will your weight loss be.

3 ) How do you set reasonable, healthy expectations when you resolve to lose weight or shape up at this time of year or any other time of year?

Jennifer Schonborn, AADP (jenniferschonborn.com)

Holistic nutrition counselor

“The key is to make small, gradual changes, one baby step at a time. This week, try replacing French fries with green vegetables. Next week, go for a brisk walk a couple of times. And so on.

Break those big goals down into small, doable steps, and before you know it you’ll start to see results.  Patience is important, as is the resolve to make real, lasting changes to your habits.

Diets don’t work. If you lose 15 pounds in two weeks by severely restricting your food intake, that weight will come back once you start eating “normally” again.

What you want to do is reset what normal is for you. And it doesn’t have to be painful. Making small adjustments here and there add up to huge changes over time. Just stick with it”.

Mark’s reply

I do tend to agree that patience is a big key in succeeding long-term if we don’t tend to see results very quickly we can tend to get disillusioned and emotional at the same time.

Which will cause a recipe for disaster, I’m also a great believer in the fact that diets don’t necessarily work so agree with that statement wholeheartedly 100 %.

Diets tend to create a honeymoon type mentality, and once it’s over it can be very easy to slip into old habits and put the weight back on.

4 ) What kind of support should you seek to help you achieve your goals

Lynn Grieger, RD, CDE , cPT (LynnGrieger.com)

Health food and fitness coach

“Not everyone needs support in reaching their goals, but many people find they stay on track if they have someone to be accountable to.

This person is preferably not a friend or family member; you want someone who can objectively help you.

A coach, personal trainer, physician, nurse practitioner, even an online community can work well in this role”.

Marks reply

I do tend to agree that many people may not need some support in attaining their goals, and people can tend to stay on the right track when they have somebody they are accountable to.

I don’t necessarily tend to agree that it doesn’t need to be a friend or a family member, not everybody can afford a personal trainer.

Having said that some people will need a personal trainer, especially, if they are struggling with motivation issues, etc.

I think friends and family can be a great support, and if you have a friend who is already fit and healthy you may be able to learn something from them, and even do your workout together that is just my point of view.

5 ) What are three things you can do to improve your chances of success before you make a healthy lifestyle change?

Roger Gould, MD (shrinkyourself.com)

“Be honest with yourself. If you are too distraught, scared of attempting to change your eating habits, or just wishing and hoping but secretly sure you are going to fail, don’t do it now just because it is a new year.

But if you are tired of yo-yo dieting, and tired of being obsessed and controlled by food, and are really ready to start a new part of your life, then make a serious commitment to a program that can guide you safely, step-by-step, to that goal.

If you decide to make a commitment, then stick with it by seeing it as a psychological growth adventure, which just happens to give you the added benefit of getting rid of your cravings and compulsive eating.”

Mark’s reply

I tend to agree about doing things because it’s the start of the New Year, we can make a decision to become fit and healthy at any time of the year so why not start now.

And I think seeing it is as a way to grow is a really good way to look at it, when we change things within ourselves, it can seem a bit uncomfortable.

However, think about how you feel when you’re how you are now being overweight and unfit this ultimately can lead to feelings of feeling guilty, etc.

6 ) Why is it so hard to keep the weight off after a diet, and what can you do to maintain weight loss?

Judith Beck, PhD (beckinstitute.org)

President of the Beck Institute for Cognitive Therapy and Research; Clinical Associate Professor of Psychology in Psychiatry, University of Pennsylvania

“Most dieters don’t recognize the following: If they’ve been dieting and their weight plateaus, they need to eat exactly the same number of calories to maintain their weight loss.

The moment they start eating more calories, they will start to gain weight back.

Therefore, from the very beginning, they shouldn’t make any changes in their eating that they can’t keep up for life.

Keeping weight off after a diet is also difficult because once dieters become accustomed to the lower number on the scale, they no longer get the thrill of weighing themselves.

They need to continue to motivate themselves daily by reading a long list of reasons they want to maintain their weight loss: “I want to stay thinner, I want to keep feeling better about myself, I want to maintain the health benefits I’ve experienced, I want to continue to have more energy,” and so on”.

Marks reply,

I do tend to agree that they shouldn’t make any changes in their eating that they can’t keep up for life. When you’re trying to lose weight and lose a significant amount.

They can be a tendency to slip back into eating things that got you in there in the first place, and you end up putting it back on.

When you are embarking on a healthy lifestyle, you have to make the hard decision that it has to be for life or not at all, harsh words, I know but that is how it has to be.

In addition, I tend to agree about the thrill of getting on the scales, once you have lost the weight the novelty can wear off. That is why it is important to keep these habits in place to make sure that you don’t stray.

7 ) Can you rearrange your life in any way to make it easier to avoid diet temptations?

Alysa Bajenaru, RD, CPT (inspiredrd.com)

Dietitian, personal trainer

“Absolutely. The best way to avoid temptations is to be prepared. Take some time on Sunday to plan out meals for the week.

Take time each night to prepare snacks and meals for the next day.

Always keep a healthy snack on hand in your purse or briefcase so that you won’t be tempted to snack from a vending machine”.

Mark’s reply

Preparing meals in advance is a great idea as well as doing it at night time, and having snacks handy in a small plastic tub is great advice. If we have it with us then there is no excuse.

If you have food with you are far less likely to get tempted by eating take-away food, which may be unhealthy. I agree with everything written in the above reply some great advice there.

8 ) What advice do you have for people who just don’t like to exercise or who avoid it for other reasons?

Julie Upton, MS, RD (appforhealth.com)

Former national spokesperson, American Dietetic Association .

“Call it something else and get on with it. We have to move our bodies — period. Of all the things there are to do to move, find something you like and do it.

I think people who do a variety of activities tend to be the ones who stick with it, and morning exercise seems to be the best for sticking to a schedule.

Gardening, walking the dog, taking stairs, doing basic strength exercises while watching TV all count. Just do something — every day if you can”.

Marks reply

I don’t exactly know what else you could call it, but I think that is great advice. We do we indeed have to move our bodies because that is what they were designed for in the first place.

And people who do a variety of different exercises are probably far less likely to get bored and stop. We tend to forget that we can incorporate exercise into our lives without even realising it, such as what is mentioned above.

Like gardening, walking the dog, etc.

9 ) When you’re making a resolution to improve your health, who should you recruit to be on your wellness team?

Corinne Dobbas (greengrapesnutrition.com)

“Recruit those closest to you and that you spend the most time with, as they have the biggest impact on your day-to-day. For example, tell your spouse, best friends, and those closest to you at work.

Explain to them that you’re on a mission to get healthier and that it’s very important to you because of “x, y, and z.”

They will respect you and be less likely to offer you cookies and muffins, tell you to skip the gym for drinks, and eat Chinese takeout instead of cook at home.

Additionally, if you share a couple of your goals with them, such as eating breakfast and working out four days a week, you may find that they help keep you honest.

You may also find that you inspire them, and that they start to change for the healthier too, giving you more opportunities to succeed”.

Mark’s reply

I think it’s important to recruit people you spend a lot of time with, the reason being is if they have good habits than they are very likely to rub off on to you, especially if they have healthy ones. It’s a well-known fact that we become mostly like the people we are around.

So I agree with the above statement about getting people close to you on board. Having people around you with similar values will help you immensely.

In your long-term goals and it could work both ways you will both become healthier at the same time. Overall, sound advice from Corrine.

10 ) It’s easy to make excuses when you’re juggling work and family responsibilities. How can you make time for your resolutions in a hectic schedule?

Dr. Susan Biali, MD (susanbiali.com)

“Here are four key ways to free up time. Look at your schedule for the next month and ask yourself these questions:

1. Where in your life are you wasting time that you could easily take back for yourself?

2. What unnecessary or unfulfilling commitments, activities or tasks in your life can you simply start saying “no” to?

3. What things are you doing that someone else (your kids, your spouse, an assistant, a student you could hire) could do for you?

It also helps to identify what time of day you are most likely going to keep your promise to yourself (for example, if you know that there’s no way you would ever peel yourself off the couch at night to exercise, plan to fit in your new exercise routine in the morning or during your lunch hour.)

Mark’s reply

I tend to agree that when we say we don’t have time to get fit and healthy, we often waste that time time doing other things which we shouldn’t be doing.

And sometimes it can be hard to say no to other people when we know we should be doing other things. I can relate to number two as I bet other people can.

My grateful thanks for letting everyday health let me participate in this as I have really enjoyed it thank you. I hope everybody has got as much out of this as I have.

If you would like to see all the answers that the experts gave from everyday health, here is the link

http://www.everydayhealth.com/weight/weight-loss-goals.aspx

Q and A Session For Everyday Health New Year New You Part One

headerI have been asked by Everyday Health to answer ten questions regarding, making New Year’s resolutions regarding weight loss and fitness goals. And what we can do to keep ourselves on track.

In a second post, which will follow on directly from this, are the experts from everyday health with there answers and my replies to what they have said. It would have been to big just to put it in one post.

1 ) We all make New Year’s resolutions, and often these resolutions involve weight loss or fitness goals. But many of us quickly lose traction and don’t achieve our goals. What are the psychological and emotional reasons behind these failures?

Mark

I think the reason a lot of people don’t tend to achieve their goals, is because as with anything new we can tend to feel a bit lost, and we may not be exactly sure of how to achieve them.

Modern day life can be very hectic and fast-paced and we may not always feel as though, we have enough time to eat properly or find time to exercise.

Overtime we can be very set in our ways, and if it’s a case of having to change something or having to fit something else in it can seem like too much trouble to fit into our already hectic lives.

However, what we don’t seem to realise is that the time is probably there, but we spend it doing other things.

When you’re making lifestyle changes, they have to become part of your everyday life somewhere along the line. As the saying goes, unless we “fail to plan we plan to fail”. In a nutshell, it’s all about incorporating into your life what you need to do in order to reach your goals.

An example of this is you could exercise three times a day for ten minutes instead of doing it in one session what people don’t seem to realise is it will still have the same effect.

2 ) What is the biggest mistake people make when making a resolution? Are you setting yourself up for failure when you make a New Year’s resolution to lose weight or get fit?

Mark

I think the problem with making New Year’s resolutions is it tends to be a bit I need to do something in the coming year.

I always tend to say why wait until the New Year starts why not start now. I think New Year’s resolutions tend to make us feel better because we feel we are actually going to change something about ourselves, but as we know that isn’t always the case.

I dare say not everybody will set themselves up for failure but speaking from my own personal experience, we can tend to say to ourselves, I will do it next year. However, really it’s about changing ourselves internally the way we think and the way we behave.

Getting out of our comfort zones can be a big thing, and it can seem uncomfortable having to do things that we wouldn’t normally have to do. Such as weighing ourselves and watching what we eat.

Some people will succeed at keeping their resolutions, whereas some people will fail it’s very much how we tend to be as people which are where changes need to be made.

3 ) How do you set reasonable, healthy expectations when you resolve to lose weight or shape up at this time of year or any other time of year.

Mark

I would say keep very realistic and grounded, and keep your focus on yourself and what you are doing. Don’t necessarily think of losing weight as one big huge task I tend to think that this is one of the main reasons why some people don’t tend to succeed.

They stand on the scales and see how much weight they need to lose and it seems overwhelming. However, if you put this into smaller achievable goals say on a weekly or monthly basis it won’t seem nowhere near as hard.

Make small changes every week to the way you eat and exercise, and you will see big changes over time.

4 ) What kind of support should you seek to help you achieve your goals?

Mark

Let your friends and family know that you are making an important lifestyle change, so they can give you support as and when you need it. If you know somebody else who is already fit and healthy it would pay to do your workout routines with them and ask them what sort of foods they eat.

Some studies have shown that other people’s eating habits can become the same as yours if you associate with them long enough.

Although it doesn’t need to stop there, as there are many ways you can use the Internet to drum up support for what you’re doing.

One particular person used twitter for support, and it wasn’t long before he had interactions with people whom were trying to achieve the same goals.

In addition, in his particular case it did work very well and kept him motivated.

5 ) What are three things you can do to improve your chances of success before you make a healthy lifestyle change?

Mark

Be realistic about what you are about to do, we don’t necessarily live in a perfect world, and things don’t always work out as we plan them to.

Keep a record of what you are doing, research has found that people who keep logs or journals of what they are doing are far more likely to succeed than those who don’t.

If one thing doesn’t work try other things everybody is different some people lose weight quicker than others.

For example, some exercise works better for some people than others.

And certain types of food work better for some people than others it’s all about experimentation.

It took me a while to find out what did and didn’t work it doesn’t always necessarily happen straight away you have to keep swapping and changing things until you find the right combination that works for you.

6 ) Why is it so hard to keep the weight off after a diet, and what can you do to maintain weight loss?

Mark

I think the problem with having a diet mentality as I call it is, it is more like a honeymoon period. Once we have lost a certain amount of weight, its all to easy to put it back on again.

And we can tend to start eating the foods that got us where we were in the first place.

We tend to underestimate the temptation of food, and even more so these days we are being constantly bombarded with advertisements about food.

It can take a long time to get rid of engrained habits that have been there for years. You have to decide which kind of lifestyle you want to be thinner and healthier or overweight and unhealthy.

Decide where you want to be in five years time say and see yourself as that person being healthier and fitter and happier.

7 ) Can you rearrange your life in any way to make it easier to avoid diet temptations?

Mark

Yes you can the first thing, I would do is be consciously aware of what I am buying when I go to do my grocery shopping, be aware of placements of certain types of foods. And also try to notice any particular instances in your life when you may be tempted to eat the wrong foods. Situations like parties or any other similar events, when there is lots of food before you. I t can be very easy to get carried away and forget about what you are trying to do in the first place.

8 ) What advice do you have for people who just don’t like to exercise or who avoid it for other reasons?

The problem with exercise is we tend to see it as a chore rather than something we enjoy doing, so the key is to fit it into your life so it doesn’t feel as though it is a chore. If you have a dog take it for more walks.

Instead of going in a car to do your shopping, walk instead. Everything you do which involves some sort of physical activity all helps to what you are trying to achieve.

To prevent yourself from avoiding exercise, remind yourself consistently how beneficial it will be to your health. Put little cue cards inside your wallet or where ever is convenient to remind yourself of why you are doing it. Think long-term not just short-term.

9 ) When you’re making a resolution to improve your health, who should you recruit to be on your wellness team?

Mark

Let as many people know as possible what it is you’re doing and trying to achieve. You may need the help of a personal trainer if you are unsure what to do or if you’re struggling with motivation. Let your friends and family know what you are trying to do, as they will be able to give you as much support as you need.

If any of your friends are trying to achieve the same goals as yourself ask if you can participate in what they are doing, if you decide to do some exercise with them, it will introduce a bit of a competitive spirit.

And we do act like the people we are around, if. However, you don’t know of anybody then you can always use the Internet some people have used e-mail to help support each other.

There are also many sites such as everyday health, spark people etc that support communities studies have shown that when people interact with each other and also blog with other people it does help them to achieve their goals.

Also utilise Twitter or Facebook as I mentioned earlier.

10 ) It’s easy to make excuses when you’re juggling work and family responsibilities. How can you make time for your resolutions in a hectic schedule?

You may not of already had to do so but time management will be a big key to your success. People often say that they don’t have time to do this, that or the other.

However, what we often don’t seem to realise is we spend time doing other things, which don’t necessarily help us. If you have a family, it can be harder but there are activities that you can do so you all benefit at the same time.

If you go to a park with your children then why not play football or get involved with what they are doing. Whether it’s running or general play, etc. There is nothing stopping anybody from exercising while they are watching television I used to do it from time to time.

However, we tend to think that we should just sit there watching TV because that is what we are used to doing. Some people go for walks on their lunch break at work rather than sitting in the office talking to other people.

The time is always there is just a matter of finding it and scheduling it in, keep a log of when you’re supposed to do your exercise and of what you eat that way you can’t go far wrong.

Imagine What You Eat and Eat Less

Image by eliotmarc

2865384067_dc1b451471_mOne of the problems you can have when you’re trying to lose excess weight is all the pictures of food which we are constantly being bombarded with every day.

However, is that necessarily a bad thing I don’t mean that by what I’ve stated in the above paragraph. I’m talking about more your own thoughts from a food point of view.

Say, for instance, if you like a particular type of chocolate bar imagine eating every last bit of it. Now you might be thinking why on earth would I want to do that surely it’s going to make me want that particular food or is it?

You might be very surprised to the answer to that question, research which has been published in Science has actually found this to be true. What they found was when you actually imagine eating a certain food strangely enough it can stop you eating it so much.

This debunks the theory that when you think about certain foods too much you are far more likely to want to eat them more. The team which headed the research asked people to continually think about eating certain foods to see how it would affect them.

What they found was quite amazing when they imagined eating they were far less likely to want to eat it, the process completely decreased their appetite. Here is what one of the researchers had to say about what was going on.

“These findings suggest that trying to suppress one’s thoughts of desired foods in order to curb cravings for those foods is a fundamentally flawed strategy,” said Carey Morewedge, an assistant professor of social and decision sciences and lead author of this study.

“Our studies found that instead, people who repeatedly imagined the consumption of a morsel of food — such as an M&M or cube of cheese — subsequently consumed less of that food than did people who imagined consuming the food a few times or performed a different but similarly engaging task.

We think these findings will help develop future interventions to reduce cravings for things such as unhealthy food, drugs and cigarettes, and hope they will help us learn how to help people make healthier food choices.”

During the study, the researchers ran five different tests, to see what effects it had on the participants when they imagined mentally eating certain foods. In experiment one they went through the same process mentally 33 times.

A control group imagined a washing machine with 33 quarters in it this was supposed to simulate eating the food. People in another group imagined 30 quarters and were told to think about eating three M&Ms.

And the other group was told to think about putting 3 quarters into a washing machine and told to imagine eating 30 M&Ms. They all were then told to eat from a bowl containing M&Ms the ones that imagined eating 30 M&Ms actually ate less compared to their counterparts thus validating the theory.

Here is what one of the researchers said, which sums up how it works.

“Our findings show that habituation is not only governed by the sensory inputs of sight, smell, sound and touch, but also by how the consumption experience is mentally represented.

To some extent, merely imagining an experience is a substitute for actual experience. The difference between imagining and experiencing may be smaller than previously assumed.”

So imagine what you eat that you don’t want to eat and eat less. Another fascinating groundbreaking piece of research don’t you think. Is it something that particularly affects you and does it actually work. It would be interesting to get some feedback from people. So please leave a comment in the comment’s section below.

Source: http://www.sciencedaily.com

And Yet More Crash Diet Myths Exposed

Image by haustin-hsieh

5248427156_03af8171ac_mQuite some time ago now I wrote a post called is Crash Dieting Safe and Can It Work? Here is the follow-up to this post with more up-to-date data and information from a recent study from Australia .

And apparently what they say is put behind you. What has been said in the past and forget steady dieting the best way to get rid of excess weight is to lose it fast. From what they say not only was it wrong but there was no proof to back it up.

And now it seems as more and more people put on weight the advice now is to shed it faster rather than slower. Even certain health care professionals are starting to come around to this way of thinking, but the big problem is it isn’t reaching people who are trying to lose weight and eat healthily.

Katrina Purcell, is a dietician in Australia and is head of the research in debunking the crash diet myths.

She got hold of some data from dieticians and nutritionists and was alarmed to find that 99 percent of the people they were consulting were told to use the steady-state form of dieting rather than the quicker approach.

She was quoted as saying this: “Some 99.2 per cent of nutritionists and dieticians say they recommend to their patients gradual weight loss over more rapid,” she says.

“However, there is absolutely no scientific evidence to support their claim.” And she adds, with more than 60 per cent of Australians now overweight or obese, the ‘slow and steady’ message doesn’t seem to be having much effect.

Katrina however, does want to offer a word of caution she says that she does not necessarily recommend crash dieting and nor does she recommend fad diets either.

When the study was done it was under controlled conditions, and help was available most of the time to the participants in case of any problems.

Here is what she did, she compared the results from some people in one group, which used the quick method. They lost 1 1/2 kilograms over a period of 12 weeks, and these results were compared to participants using the slower method.

All the people on the study had a body weight of 100 kilograms and aBMI of 30. When the results were finalised they found the people in the quick group had a 83 percent success rate, in reaching their 15 percent weight loss goal.

Compared to the other group which had a 50 percent success rate, Katrina seems to think that the reason for this is purely psychological but is keeping an open mind and hoping to find if there may be other reasons for it.

She said: “Those people in the rapid group remained more motivated and were able to see the results coming,” she says. “Those in the gradual group were more prone to becoming disenchanted.”

In the steady-state group, the dropout rate was a lot higher compared to those in the rapid group. An endocrinologist had this to say about the findings.

One of the things that is said a lot about losing weight quickly is if you tend to crash diet it slows your metabolism down, but he says that is nonsense, here is what he said.

“Before, after and during weight loss programs there is hardly any variation in a person’s metabolic rate,” he says. “I have an expensive machine which measures the metabolic rate and shows it may possibly drop back 50 to 100 calories during a period of rapid weight loss.

“But this can be dealt with by adding another 10 minutes of exercise a day.”

If you are thinking about trying crash dieting, please do it with caution and do let a healthcare professional know exactly what you are going to do.

This post is purely for educational purposes only it does not mean that I recommend that people start to crash diet in order to lose weight quickly. What are your thoughts about crash dieting? Would you consider doing it? And do you think it’s safe? And has it worked for you.

Please leave a comment in the comment’s section, below so we can discuss this in more detail.

Source: http://www.heraldsun.com.au

Eating Plenty of Vegetables Can Give Your Skin a Healthy Glow

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57925008_7e7ef4dda4_mWouldn’t it be great if there was a better way to get a healthy looking glow without having to lie on a sun bed or in the sun for hours at a time. Well perhaps there is a way so read on.

This study was done at Nottingham University , which found that if you eat a diet which is high in fresh fruit and vegetables it gives your skin a healthy glow.

Dr Ian Stephen, who headed the research, had this to say.

“Most people think the best way to improve skin colour is to get a suntan, but our research shows that eating lots of fruit and vegetables is actually more effective”.

Dr Stephen found that the participants whom he monitored and ate a lot fresh produce their skin had a healthy glow about it similar to a suntan. The reason for this is a substance called carotenoids.

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How Many Portions Of Fruit And Vegetables Do You Need To Be Eating A Day?

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The current guidelines, so we are told have been for a long time that we are supposed to eat five portions of fruit and vegetables per day. However, now it would seem that we need to eat more than five a day in order to maintain our heart health.

In some recent news, it has come to light that we now need to eat eight portions of fruit and vegetables in order to maintain our health.  There has been some skepticism as to whether or not eating more than five portions of healthy foods had any actual benefits.

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