Fat-Loss! The biggest hurdle every person faces while setting their desired body goal. As difficult as it may seem, believe me, many people have belied the true process of burning fat as mundane and a difficult process. And it’s false! Shedding fat to get lean, healthy and fit might seem like a lot of donkey work but it actually requires two things that are quite simple. Mental Focus and Willpower. Once you give in these two, losing fat becomes easy especially when common myths surrounding fat-loss routines are invalidated, which I will elucidate further in this article. So sit back, you’ll be kissing your fats good-bye.
1. Putting the fork down after 6 pm
When deciding to reduce weight and fat, one often sticks to a strict caloric deficit diet program i.e intake of calories considerably less than what you usually eat. This involves a reduced fat and carbohydrate intake, but a highly fibrous, yet nutritious diet with your meals spread out throughout the day. While this is absolutely an efficient approach, where one really goes wrong is in believing that one should not eat after evening, 6 pm usually.
Simple truth is that whatever you consume contains calories and how much you consume equates to the volume of calories absorbed by your body. Regardless of what time you eat. In a 2012 study, two groups of overweight people were given a task, one had to eat carbs throughout the day and the other only at night. Results showed that people consuming carbohydrates at night tend to shed weight faster compared to the daylight hoggers. This is because the evening eaters had a healthier set of hormones that developed good quantities of GH (Growth Hormone). This hormone determines the amount of fat loss as well as muscle growth. It burns fat throughout the night when you sleep until you consume your first meal in the morning.
Thus, consuming carbohydrates at evening/night with a general high fibrous meal will help you stay satiated and promote fat loss. Use your GH to the fullest, but don’t push your breakfast in the morning either!
2. Losing weight is a linear process
Losing fat, in the beginning, is quick and you might find yourself shedding pounds week after week. But there will come a point where your fat loss will slow down. Don’t think of it as a bad thing because it’s absolutely normal. Most will say that your routine is incorrect or you are doing something wrong, but do not dwell on that opinion.
Burning fat and losing weight is usually progressive, but not entirely linear process. This is not a cause of concern because some days you might have a greater water retention (especially for women during their menstrual cycle), while on some your body holds food longer than usual to digest completely. Besides, if your body has a lot of food to digest, it will break down carbohydrates for energy while digestion, so your body will have fuel ready for working out. In this case, the body ceases to burn fat to restore energy for a workout. It can be a cause of concern, but if you are following a calorie deficit diet, this most certainly won’t affect you.
For as long as your weight reduces overtime you’re on the right track. Just keep following your regime and sometimes, spice up your workout by adding supersets. And you’re good to go.
3. Carbs make you fat
Carbohydrates, the most confounding foods that are surrounded by a misconception i.e they make you fat. While a part of it holds credibility, there has to be a clear distinction between which carbohydrates will help you lose or gain fat. Refined carbohydrates like refined grains, sugars, white bread, and white rice are stripped of essential natural fibers which are responsible for keeping you full for a longer duration. Naturally, you tend to feel hungry more often and end up eating more than you should while cutting down, gradually gaining weight.
On the other hand, carbohydrates rich in resistance starch help you burn fat but most people fail to consume enough daily. Essentially 10 to 15 grams absorbed by the body promotes to fat burning. It functions similar to soluble fiber which enables the growth of short-chain fatty acids like butyrate. Studies have shown that it improves blood sugar control, digestive sensitivities, and insulin health. Oats, Bananas, Legumes, High maize flour, Cooked and cooled potatoes and other vegetables and fruits are rich in resistant carbs.
Often we crave bread puddings, chocolate cakes, and cinnamon-coated doughnuts, but temporary pleasures push you further away from your fitness goals. Consume carbohydrates, healthy ones and you’ll be proud to see the results.
4. Do a lot of cardio
No! Don’t fall into this trap. It’s a monotonous journey and you’ll end up exactly where you don’t want to be. Endless marathons on the treadmill and a cycle that’s gonna take you nowhere, you’re better off running for 5 minutes rather than walking for 30 minutes, sometimes even more. Studies have proved that people performing cardio only to lose weight for 45 minutes daily lose fat much much slower than the ones who perform HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training).
Low-intensity cardio like jogging, walking, slow cycling will do no good. Our bodies are very stubborn and start burning muscle instead of fat if exposed to longer duration of exertion. For the body to produce energy, it extracts that from your muscles thereby leaving layers of fats unburnt. HIIT proves to be a more efficient method. Short bursts of high-intensity workouts burn fat for energy and help your body burn calories even after a workout, thus increasing your metabolism.
For the body to reach a high intensity for HIIT, every fiber or your muscle needs to be exerted and that can only occur when you have a good muscle mass. This can be achieved by weight training or calisthenics.
Do not listen to people who nudge you repeatedly to juice out the treadmill. Be smart and use scientific understanding to fight your fat. And you’ll achieve your goals in no time.
5. Avoid fruits during fat loss
I really have no clue what possibly engendered this opinion that has plagued quite a few fitness enthusiasts. From the ones who gain and lose in cycles to newbies wanting to lose fat follow this third-world alienated opinion. Fruits are rich in fiber and nutrients. Period. Fruits contain vitamins, antioxidants, carbohydrates, and calories. They are a source of good soluble fibers that keep you satiated for longer. Then why avoid them?
Fruits are double-edged swords, too much of them is not good and sometimes will hinder with your fat loss, well isn’t that the case with everything in life? However not consuming them also makes your body vulnerable to a carbohydrate craving. Well, most people end up ruining their diet by sneaking out of their diet plans.
Focus on berries, and small fibrous fruits. Clementines, strawberries, kiwi, peaches, plums, and small apples should be your first pick of the lot. There are fiber-rich fruits. There comes a point in every person’s diet where he has to eat less. At this point reduce your fruit intake but do not kill it. You need nutrients and fiber to melt all that cream off you. So go grab an apple and eat it whole.
6. Fat makes you fat
Body fat as we call it is nothing but stored fat. Logically speaking, adding more fat to your diet will only increase your reserves, right? But the way body stores fat is very whimsical. Eating calorie and fat rich junk food do increase your fat percentage considerably, but the kind of fats you find in pizzas, pasta, and burgers are quite the enemies. Often called as Trans fats and Saturated fats that contain a high portion of fatty acid molecules without double bonds. These are unhealthy and increase the risk of high cholesterol and heart diseases.
Unsaturated fats are the kind of fats we require for fat loss. These are the good fats that comprise of polyunsaturated fatty acids and monounsaturated fatty acids. When consumed in moderation, help reduce body fat percentage and risk of high cholesterol and heart diseases. Polyunsaturated fats can be obtained best from vegetable oils and omega 3s fish oils.
Monounsaturated fats are generally liquid at room temperature and solidify when refrigerated. It’s heart healthy and a good source of antioxidant vitamin E. The combined intake of good unsaturated fats provide healthy fatty acids that fight bad fats, hence aiding to a speedy burning of your stored fats.
Thus to know the kind of fat you consume, you will have to note down every source of saturated fats and replace them with unsaturated fats. So get out there and consume some healthy fats!
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