Fitness gurus are popular for sharing (and selling) their tricks to help you burn fat. Many of these methods sound like good ideas and are accepted by the mainstream as valid methods. Unfortunately, many of them are downright pointless or untrue. Here are 3 commonly used fat loss tactics that you can ignore:
There are lots of products that promise to detox your body of both toxins and body fat. They usually include a cleansing drink or pills, along with a very restrictive diet. Here’s the deal: your body already has mechanisms to detox any “toxins” by way of your liver and kidneys.
People usually experience weight loss with detox products because of the restrictive diet (one that usually can’t be maintained) and some of the products that act as laxatives, causing weight loss from water and waste (not body fat). People often initially feel better and more energized because of a placebo effect, and because their new diet might force them to replace high calorie meals with nutrient-dense fruits and veggies.
Save your money and experience the same benefits by simply controlling your daily calories and eating more nutrient-rich foods. For a more detailed look at detoxes, check out what scientists are saying about them.
Small, Frequent Meals
The old-school belief was to eat small meals every 2-3 hours to speed up your metabolism and keep your body in fat burning mode. This myth has been debunked as there’s no evidence to support it, yet fitness experts (and even some doctors) STILL purport this theory. If you enjoy eating small, frequent meals, then make it your routine. But if you don’t have the appetite or lifestyle to adhere to this, simply eat the number of meals that satisfy you best. You won’t be hindering your fat loss by spreading your meals out further apart.
Brown Carbs are More Nutritious Than White Carbs
Sweet potatoes are healthier than white potatoes. Brown rice is more nutritious than white rice. These statements are accepted as common knowledge in today’s world, but the truth is not so black (or should I say brown?) and white. Brown does not automatically signify being healthier than white.
The next time you are in the supermarket (or your pantry), compare the nutrition labels between a bag of brown rice and white rice. For most brands, you’ll notice the calories, macronutrient content, and vitamin/mineral contents are very similar. White potatoes and sweet potatoes are both rich in nutrients, and both are likely to be high in fat if you eat them in fry or potato chip form. Heck, even whole wheat bread and white bread do not have significant nutrition differences between each other according to most nutrition labels, as well as the Live Strong Foundation.
The most significant benefit of brown carbohydrates over white ones is usually the fiber content, but if your fiber intake is plentiful from a high fruit and vegetable intake then this is a non-issue. And even with the lower fiber content, white potatoes and white rice have demonstrated to be two of the most effective foods at delaying hunger.
Some whole grain products certainly are more nutritious than white products, but investigate the dietary information before making assumptions.
Is Everything a Lie?
There are plenty more nutrition myths masquerading around as fact to the public. It’s important to always consider the source of the information. If the claim has not been substantiated by research that’s been reviewed by other scientists and nutritionists, there is reason to question it. This is a great rule of thumb to use, no matter if the information is presented by a friend, fitness expert, or a famous doctor on television.
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