Thursday, November 1, 2012

Dangerous Dieting

In addition to undergoing extremely risky surgeries, Americans have been bombarded with a battery of gimmicky diets that promise to combat obesity. Almost all diets are ineffective. They don't work, be­ cause no matter how much weight you lose when you are on a diet, you put it right back on when you go off. Measuring portions and trying to eat fewer calories, typically called "dieting," almost never results in permanent weight loss and actually worsens the problem
over time.  Such "dieting" temporarily slows down your metabolic
rate, so often more weight comes back than you lost. You wind up
heavier than you were before you started dieting. This leads many to claim, "I've tried everything, and nothing works. It must be genetic. Who wouldn't give up?"
You may already know that the conventional "solution" to being overweight — low-calorie dieting — doesn't work. But you may not know why. It is for this simple yet much overlooked reason: for the vast majority of people, being overweight is not caused by how much they eat but by what they eat. The idea that people get heavy because they consume a high volume of food is a myth. Eating large amounts of the right food is your key to success and is what makes this plan workable for the rest of your life. What makes many people over­ weight is not that they eat so much more but that they get a higher percentage of their calories  from  fat  and  refined carbohydrates,  or mostly low-nutrient foods. This low-nutrient diet establishes a favor­ able cellular environment for disease to flourish.
Regardless of your metabolism  or genetics,  you can  achieve a normal weight once you start a high-nutrient diet style. Since the majority of all Americans are overweight, the problem is not primar­ ily genetic. Though genes are an important ingredient, physical ac­ tivity and food choices play a far more significant role. In studies on identical twins with the tendency to be overweight, scientists found
that physical activity is the strongest environmental determinant of
total body and central abdominal fat mass.12 Even those with a strong family history of obesity effectively lose weight with increased phys­ ical activity and appropriate dietary modifications.
Most of the time, the reason people are overweight is too little physical activity,  in  conjunction  with  a  high-calorie.  low-nutrient diet. Eating a diet with plenty of low-fiber, calorie-dense food, such as oil and refined carbohydrates, is the main culprit.
As long as you are eating fatty foods and refined carbohydrates, it is impossible to lose weight healthfully. In fact, this vicious combi­ nation of a sedentary lifestyle and eating typical  "American"  food (high-fat, low-fiber) is the primary reason we have such an incredi­ bly overweight population.


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