There are many traps that can slow down your weight loss progress or even undo it completely, so when you go on a diet, stick to facts, not myths that can do more harm than good. Some of these misconceptions are still widely spread, despite the fact that they’ve been proven wrong.
From “negative calorie foods” to exaggerated notions about breaking and eating late at night, here are the weight loss myths that have been busted and that shouldn’t have any impact on your dieting.
1. Digesting Certain Foods Burns More Calories Than They Provide
While there are plenty of foods that can have a positive impact on your metabolic rate and help you speed up your fat burning, there is no such thing as negative calorie foods. Water has 0 calories and that’s as negative as it gets. You can eat plenty of low calorie fruits and vegetables, but don’t make the mistake of believing you’re losing weight just by digesting them.
2. You Can’t Lose Weight Without Giving Up Fast Food
If you love fast food, banning it altogether when you’re trying to lose weight will create plenty of frustration. Saying no to fast food completely is one of the weight loss myths. You have to give up the fast food meals that provide you with enough calories, fat and sodium for the entire day, but you can just make better choices and still get to enjoy a more guilty ocassional treat.
3. You Should Never Eat Before Bed
Going to sleep with an empty stomach isn’t really recommended, since you won’t be able to get a good night’s sleep while your digestive system is fully active, but you can snack before bedtime. The real reason this habit is looked down upon is that most people usually make the wrong choices and foods high in fats or sugar. If you can make healthy choices and your meal isn’t very large, you can still eat before going to bed and continue to lose weight.
4. Keep Exercising and You’ll Keep the Weight Off
Even if you keep your calories under control and exercise regularly, that still doesn’t guarantee that your weight will be stable. Your metabolism slows down with age, so be prepared to face one of the weight loss myths, because you won’t be able to get the same results in the long run without a bit of flexibility.
5. Low Fat Foods Are Always Good for Your Diet
If a low fat diet works for you, you should look for naturally low fat foods. Processed foods that are labeled as “low fat” or “reduced fat” sometimes include more sugar to keep the taste, so you’re getting more calories despite less fats.
6. You Have to Cut Back on Carbs
The idea that banishing carbs is a sure way to lose the extra pounds is also one of the big weight loss myths. There are plenty of complex carbs, that come from whole grains, which can keep your energy levels more stable than refined carbs.
7. Eating a Good Breakfast Is a Must
Starting your day with a good breakfast is recommended for your metabolism, but that doesn’t mean you can do ahead and stop counting breakfast calories. Your first meal of the day should have both carbs and lean protein, but if you overeat refined carbs for breakfast, you’ll only fuel more cravings during the day.
8. Drinking Plenty of Water Can Help You Lose Weight
Staying hydrated can definitely help with hunger, but the idea that drinking a lot of water will magically help you drop a few pounds is one of the weight loss myths. Your appetite might decrease if you drink a glass of water before a meal, but true progress only shows up when you burn more than you eat.
9. A Vegetarian Diet Can Help You Lose Weight
There are plenty of poor choices you can make even if you’re a vegetarian or vegan, from eating a lot of processed food to relying too much on frying. You’ll also have to deal with the added stress of making sure that you’re getting all the right nutrients, so don’t think that eliminating all animal products from your diet is an easy weight loss solution.
10. You Have to Cut Back on Snacking
As long as you choose healthy, low calorie snacks, this is definitely one of the biggest weight loss myths. If you simply try to eliminate snacks from your eating plan, you won’t make a lot of progress.