Will I lose weight if I eat healthy?
We have all been there gorging on fruit and cowering away from sugar, spice and all things nice. We do so well till we come to a crossroads: you’re out with friends and you’ve had your dinner – chicken and salad. ‘I’ve made it’, you tell yourself. Now the final stage: don’t order dessert whilst all your friends continue to live life. You tell yourself you don’t need it and just like that you call the waiter over and order over 3 times the amount everyone else has and to make matters worse, it’s now game on. You’ve screwed up your diet so you keep going, what’s next? Everything you have deprived yourself from; cookies, ice-cream, pizza and sweets.
– Flickr – Noodles and beef
This continues till you decide you need to ‘torture’ (dieting) yourself again for another 3 weeks only to do it all over again and spin your wheels. Now summer is around the corner, time is short and your waist is 3 inches too high. You see the Instagram post of that ‘fit’ guy/girl rocking an amazing bod and you tell yourself that this is your year…
– flickr – bikini figur
I’m here to tell you that can be you. That body you see will be you and if you follow these simple rules you will get there in no time, all whilst eating the foods you love.
You see, we have all been misled and continue to be by crappy magazines, fitness models and fads promising you the next best things to help you lose weight. All echoing the same lard: eat ‘healthy’, cut out carbs, cut out fats, keep your protein high, train 6 days a week and do excessive amounts of cardio to get the body of your dreams.
Therein lays the issue. They omit what the key drivers of fat loss truly are – ‘Calories’. Why it is true that you can lose weight cutting out carbs or fats is not because they in turn make you ‘fat’, it is more because of the amount of calories there are. Calories are comprised of three macronutrients – Protein, Carbohydrates and Fats.
Protein yields 4 calories per gram, Carbs also yields 4 calories per gram and Fats yields 9 calories per gram. However, they are all key to you living a ‘healthy’ life; they all play an important role for optimal body functioning.
Carbs provide energy and help with muscle recovery as well as help with sleep. Dietary fat is essential for proper testosterone; too little and you will experience a decrease in sex drive. Protein is essential to the repair of damaged muscle tissue from strength training. Too little and you will try struggle to make progress in the gym.
flickr – Butz.2013
Now to the point…an average male maintains his weight around 2500 calories provided he exercises around 60 mins 3-5 days a week. Now that person is trying to lose weight by eating ‘healthy’.
Let’s have a look at his meal plan for the day on what he thinks will help him lose weight:-
2 eggs fried in 3-4 tablespoons of olive oil (400-500 calories)
4 pieces of toast with margarine – (400-500 calories)
A glass of orange juice (80 calories)
A sandwich (300-400 calories)
A smoothie (135 calories)
Handful of almonds (approx. 20 grams) (150 calories)
Pan-fried Steak (400 calories)
3-4 tablespoons of oil (360 calories)
Total Calories: 2475
You see those numbers now equal to around maintenance; he will keep doing this till eventually he gives up or tries a fad diet to lose weight. The issue was never the type of foods he was consuming; it was actually the caloric density of each food that was halting his progress.