Weight loss diet not working? The ‘detrimental’ errors you may be making that stop results
Rapid weight loss 'becoming much more accepted' says Mosley
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In a world full of different dieting techniques, finding the right one that works can be minefield and even then the might not work. But nutrition expert Lauryn Lax at BreakingMuscle.com, has outlined three main reasons why a person’s diet might not be working for them and offered advice on how to fix these issues and achieve their nutrition goals.
Lack of healthy fats
Lauryn revealed diets that exclude or severely limit fat tend to replace all those calories with carbohydrates.
“This sets you up to ride the blood sugar roller coaster,” she said.
“Your body is constantly chasing balance between blood sugar and insulin levels, which can in turn impact your cortisol (stress hormone) production.
“Cortisol signals your body to store body fat, rather than burn it, and can also lead to increased intake of high-carbohydrate foods.”
Dietary fats can help keep energy levels more even, and hunger at bay and Lauryn recommended reaching for healthy fats with each meal, and in place of carbohydrate-based snacks, reach for a snack with healthy fat or protein as the base.
Opt for foods such as raw nuts and seeds, olive oil, coconut oil, coconut butter, avocado, olives, ghee, grass-fed butter, full-fat fermented yogurt, fatty cuts of organic meats, pastured eggs, or avocado oil.
Not enough carbs
“Just because you should eat fats doesn’t mean that carbs are the enemy, either,” Lauryn pointed out.
“When we go too low on carbs, particularly from veggies, we risk also eliminating fibre, which is essential to digestion, your gut biome, and metabolic balance.”
She referenced extreme diets which usually sit at either end of the fat v carbs spectrum, which can negatively impact your metabolism.
While there are ongoing studies into low-fat low-carb diets, some people just respond better with more of each.
Lauryn explained: “Everybody is different. For example, some women who have issues with their blood sugar or insulin resistance have found ketogenic diets beneficial as a short-term dietary approach.
“However, women who have their blood sugar under control, but have some adrenal fatigue or hormone imbalances, have found a ketogenic diet more harmful in the long run.”
Count colours, not numbers
While tracking food consumption can be helpful, Lauryn revealed it’s very easy for people to “fixate” on this.
“The problem many people run into with macro or calorie-based plans is that they fixate on numbers, scales and measurements, without acknowledging the nutrient density in foods, and how your metabolism responds to that,” she said.
“For instance, a half cup of gummy bears may supply your body with a punch of ‘quick digesting carbs’ after a workout, but the nutrient composition and health benefit it provides is completely different than a half cup of berries or a small, sweet potato.
“Your body responds to the real food with increased satiety and a better metabolic result.”
She recommended sticking to diet staples such as chicken, olive oil, and rice to provide the body with protein, fat, and carbs.
Lauryn added: “Generally speaking, less colour means fewer nutrients, and less satisfaction from eating them. You might have hit your macro goals, but your body is still craving the rest of the many nutrients it needs to function at its best.
“When we consume lots of colourful veggies, body-boosting healthy fats, and essential proteins, our metabolism comes alive, extracting various vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants to keep your body revving.”
The nutritionist’s top picks include:
Dark leafy greens
Colourful veggies (aim for two to three different veggie colours at each meal)
Citrus (lemon, orange, lime, grapefruit)
Organic herbs (parsley, cilantro, rosemary, thyme, sage)
Fermented foods like sauerkraut
Pastured eggs and poultry, grass-fed beef, wild-caught fatty fish
Coconut oil, cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil, ghee, and grass-fed butter
Raw brazil nuts, walnuts, and macadamia nuts
She added: “While you’re at it, make sure you are eating enough. Under-eating is just as detrimental as overeating.”
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