The Facts about Quick Weight Loss Diets
Calories are part of any equation where weight is a balancing act. It doesn’t matter what quick weight loss
diets promise, as far as weight loss is concerned, it’s all about calories.
Losing weight ultimately comes down to burning more calories than you eat. This is achieved by limiting extra
calories from food and increasing calorie expenditure through exercise.
Virtually all quick weight loss diets are money driven. There’s fierce
competition for television ad space among promoters of every kind of weight loss diet.
Americans spend anywhere between 30 to 50 billion dollars a year on weight loss products, which include dieting
plans, food supplements, pills, DVD/CD guides, body wraps and belts, among others.
These diets are marketed and sold to desperate people who find them hard to abandon. To add to that, many
proponents of quick weight loss diets are not nutrition experts, as they purport. Professional nutritionists
can not promote diets that are obsessively restrictive of certain food groups.
In order to understand why quick weight loss diets don’t
work, we need to learn how our bodies change with age.
Without regular strength training, most adults above 30 years will lose one-half pound of muscle every
year. This equals 10 pounds of muscle lost between 30 and 50 years. The rate of muscle loss doubles when you reach
50 years and above.
Meanwhile, as you age, you gain 10 pounds of weight (fat) every decade. Obviously these changes are not
desirable, but most adults are oblivious of the muscle loss. Instead, they get concerned with the weight gain.
Losing one-half pound of muscle each year means by the time you hit 40 years, you’ve lost 5 pounds of muscle.
One pound of muscle is needed to burn 50 calories every day; thus, to maintain your weight, your body will need 250
less calories each day.
When you hit 50 years, it becomes 500 less calories each day, compared to what you needed to maintain your
weight in the 20s. In addition, your basal metabolic rate slows down due to aging and muscle loss.
Many adults who gain weight (fat) due to these changes often opt for quick weight loss diets. This leads to a
further loss of muscle, due to restricted calories (30 percent of weight lost on diets is muscle and fluid).
In fact, in this case when you diet, your body will store more fat but continue to lose muscle,
exacerbating the loss that has already been occurring due to age. What results is a vicious cycle that will
repeat when you switch to another quick loss diet.
Most quick diets do not include physical activity. The few that attempt to include exercise tell you to do light
aerobics to burn fat. Strength training is seldom mentioned, or if it is, it’s a cursory hint. While aerobics may
burn fat when done regularly, they’ll neither build nor preserve muscle. The fact is going on whatever weight loss
diet, without exercises that maintain muscle tissue, is futile.
Don’t blame your self for lacking the determination to lose weight. Just ask your self if you really need to
diet in order to become thin. It’s important to consider your age before you try any weight loss program.