5 Common Weight Loss Myths

August 20, 2010 by  
Filed under 5 Common Weight Loss Myths

Just like counterfeit products, at some point in our battle against obesity, we also encounter several weight loss blunders–misleading statements that may have the potential to ruin your efforts to shed pounds and do the exact opposite that you have been dreading of.

To bring light into this matter, here are the top 5 weight loss myths you should never believe again.

1. Cardio burns more fat than strength training

Any physical activity burns calories. However, the quantity consumed varies on the type of exercise you are performing.

Yes, aerobic exercise burns more calories. But according to a new study conducted by researchers at Johns Hopkins University, the body’s metabolism rapidly decreases back to pre-exercise levels within half an hour after cardio exercise. On the other hand, strength training, also known as resistance training, may result to a more extensive calorie burning for up to two hours following the workout. On top of that, regular weight lifting will increase muscle mass which will help boost a person’s metabolism.

Unfortunately, many abandon strength training as a means for losing weight because an increased muscle mass may also mean an increase in body weight. Aerobics, however, presents a lot of benefits. Aside from improving the cardiovascular status, aerobic exercise also results in an improved musculature, weight loss, reduces risk of diabetes, osteoporosis, and some types of cancer. Plus, research published in the New England Journal of Medicine revealed that regular cardio exercises also increases a person’s life span.

Hence, for optimum health and weight improvement, a combined cardio and strength training for as little as 30 to 60 minutes a day would be recommended.

2. Either dieting or exercise can sustain weight loss

A person gains weight if he eats more than what his body uses, has little physical activity, or has a low basal metabolic rate resulting in the accumulation of too much body fat. Decreasing your calorie intake may cause you to lose weight fast, but exercising will also help you keep it off for good. On the plus side, exercise has a number of benefits for your body.

3. Certain exercises can cause spot reduction

Spot reduction means losing fat at a certain spot in the body such as the belly. Contrary to common belief and commercials aired on media, spot reduction remains a myth. There is neither such exercise pattern nor a pill that can reduce fat on a particular region.  Fat is lost from body areas in a pattern determined by genetics and has no relationship with exercising muscles underneath the layer of fat. If you are determined to have a spot reduction of fat, only liposuction or the surgical suctioning of adipose (fat) tissue can accomplish such.

4. Do not eat beyond 7:00 pm

There is no sense why you should not eat past seven or at night. Perhaps this is attributed to the decrease in metabolism when sleeping. But in fact, calories do not recognize time. What’s important is learning to know how much is too much, as well as your activity afterwards because this belief assumes that people will stay idle after dinner.

5. Do not eat in between meals

Snacks aren’t the reason why you gain weight. Blame it on the calories. In fact, most diet plans advocate eating in small but frequent feedings. This will keep you from going hungry and prevent you from overeating.