9 Weight Loss Myths We Still Believe Today

Written by Susan Fox, Health Writer

It used to be that if you wanted half-baked or questionable information, all you had to do was open a supermarket tabloid or talk to your neighbor.

Over the last 20 years, however, you don’t have to work at getting inundated with all kinds of information — all you have to do is speak to Siri or Alexa or type in almost anything into Google.

Presto! We are flooded with online information: a lot crazy, much of it wrong, some questionable, and some accurate.

And weight loss is one area where are a lot of myths and misinformation floating around, some of it dangerous to our health.

So, we’ve assembled some of the biggest myths out there about weight loss and took them on with facts!

Myth #1.  You have to go hungry when dieting to lose weight.

Truth: Losing weight is not about going hungry all day. That is too uncomfortable, very frustrating and is likely the #1 reason why so many ultimately abandon a diet and quickly regain the weight.

Skipping meals or starving yourself makes the body work against weight loss by slowing down your metabolism to a snail's pace; it's called the famine reaction, and it's often a trigger to overeating later on.

Myth #2.  To lose weight, exercise is the only answer. 

Truth: You cannot exercise your way out of overeating. “I think the role of exercise in weight loss is highly overrated," says Marc Reitman, chief of diabetes and obesity branch of the NIDDK. He explains that while exercise is excellent for being fit, overeating is what causes overweight.

Scientific studies based on computer simulations from “The Biggest Loser” television program, showed that diet alone was responsible for more weight loss than exercise. 

Myth #3.  Fats are high-calorie and should be avoided.

Truth: Avoiding fat can actually lead to weight gain. The latest research shows that healthy fats can actually speed up your metabolism and help you shed pounds.

Fats are indeed the most calorie-dense nutrient, having twice as many calories per gram than proteins or carbohydrates. But healthy fats are essential for good health, provide energy, and helps the gut absorb certain vitamins from foods. 

Healthy oils come mostly from plant sources that are liquid at room temperature, such as olive or nut and seed oils. Other good sources are ground flax or hemp seeds, avocados, walnuts and wild-caught salmon.

Unhealthy fats are deep-fried fast foods, trans fats, and manufactured fats found in processed foods, such as shortening, certain microwave popcorn and margarine, donuts, non-dairy creamers, and some vegetable oils.

Myth #4.  Carbohydrates are fattening and should be restricted.

Truth: Carbohydrate-rich foods are the foundation of a healthy diet. Fruits, vegetables, beans, peas and whole grains are fiber-rich and crucial for healthy weight loss or a maintenance diet. 

It's the overly sweet and refined carbs that should be eliminated, especially if combined with fats, such as pastries, donuts, pies and cakes. Choose low-glycemic carbs when dieting for weight loss.

The Glycemic Index (GI) is a rating system for foods that lets us know how fast the body converts the carbs in a food into glucose.

The smaller the number, the slower the food is converted and the lower the effect on our blood sugar.

A good rule of thumb when trying to figure out what foods to choose and what foods to generally lose is to look at their GI: 55 or less is low (great); 56–69 is medium (good); and 70 or higher is high (or bad).

For a GI chart that you can use to help plan out your low-GI shopping list, check out: Does the Food Industry Have a Dirty Little Secret?

Myth #5. You can eat any foods you want if you limit calories. 

Truth: What you eat matters, and not all calories are equal. Going overboard on calorie counting focuses your attention on quantity over quality, and your health and appetite will pay the price for it.

Of course, food intake should be relevant to the calories you burn, but that tends to balance out naturally with a nutrient-dense diet. Most healthy food choices are high in fiber, keeping blood sugar stable and cravings reduced.

Myth #6.  Healthy foods are way too expensive for my budget. 

Truth: No way! Think about produce, farmer’s markets and buying foods when in season. Grow a garden, even with planters! But don’t stint on healthy eating!. 

Beans, grains, legumes, and vegetables are among the most nourishing and least expensive super-healthy foods. 

Canned vegetables have about as much nutritional value as do fresh and are more affordable. 

Check out: How to Eat Healthy on a Budget

Myth #7.  You’ve got to cut out snacking to win at weight loss.

Truth: You shouldn’t allow yourself to go hungry between meals. 

Eat a healthy snack every three to four hours. If you’re not hungry enough to eat an apple (low in calories, high in fiber), it's a craving and not real hunger. 

Choose lean protein, veggies, an ounce of nuts, low glycemic berries, a half cup of chia seed pudding, or a serving of oatmeal with coffee or tea.  Be happy, not cranky! 

Myth #8. Grains are unhealthy and cause weight gain. 

Truth: Whole grains are a vital part of a healthy weight-loss program. However, you’re better off bypassing the refined grains like sissy-white bread. Examples of whole grains include brown rice, quinoa, whole-wheat bread, cereal and pasta.

Whole grains are fiber-rich and provide a feeling of fullness to help satisfy an appetite. Whole grains offer phytochemicals, B vitamins, and minerals, and can reduce the risk of some chronic diseases.

Myth #9. Being overweight is really about willpower.

Truth: Not! When you succeed at weight loss, you attribute it to better eating choices. But when weight gain occurs, it's blamed on the inability to exert willpower – often followed by body shaming. Don’t even go there.

Best Diet for Weight Loss

Medically supervised weight loss is a highly specialized option for those who can afford it. And the so-called best weight loss clinics have trained medical staff, some focusing on doctor-supervised plans involving diet, exercise, and weight-loss pills. 

Yet, there is still no good clinical data proving that they work. 

Intermittent fasting for weight loss has become popular, and it has some basis in science. It’s an eating pattern that regulates your food intake to a specific window of time. Some prefer a full day of fasting once every week. Many opt for six to eight hours of fasting every day. 

For example, if you were to try it, your first meal might be at 10 am, and your last meal would end at 6 pm, restricting all calorie intake from 6 pm - 10 am. This cycle is called the 16/8 [hour] intermittent fast.

There are many ways of fasting, and whichever you decide on (even if you decide not to fast at all), all approaches would be optimized with The Almased Weight Loss Phenomenon™

Almased is a meal-replacement shake used to keep your metabolism and energy levels up, helping to retain muscle and avoid hunger.

One of Almased’s Success Stories, Olenka F., fasted for seven days on the Almased diet plan, and this was her experience: "After two weeks, I lost almost 10 pounds. I feel great! I sleep amazingly; I have a lot of energy, and I am not hungry at all. I love this product, and I can see the results."

Weight Loss Meal Plan

Almased was developed over 30 years ago in Germany by a holistic scientist with the intent of helping patients with a slow metabolism. As a side effect, patients quickly began losing weight. Soon after came the weight-loss program – The Almased Figure Plan.

The 4-Phase Figure Plan incorporates Almased powder into shakes that are low-glycemic and high-protein (LGHP) meal replacements. 

The four phases start by fasting with shakes and other liquids and gradually become more of a lifestyle as the shakes begin to accompany whole meals. What’s so good about the maintenance stage of the Figure Plan is how it helps to prevent weight gain and avoid yo-yo dieting. 

Once your weight goal is achieved, you can drink an Almased shake as a weight-loss supplement every day or as needed. You’ll find that your metabolism runs up to speed, and the energy boost stays with you.

Studies from the University of Edmonton, Canada, show that Almased can support healthy metabolism in people with an average healthy weight when taken regularly from the first day on.

When dieting, it can be easy to pin our hopes on one of the latest viral weight-loss fads, but these are, more often than not, the cause of diet fails and overweight.

Almased works with our body, not against it, as it’s a common-sense approach that’s designed for long-term success. Truth wins out over online myths every time. The best diet is always the one that works. Almased could be the easiest, healthiest lifestyle change you ever make!

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