Looking for the best forms of weight loss seems like a never-ending quest, as endless numbers of tips, methods, and theories for quick and easy ways to lose weight swirl around the Internet. Unfortunately, a lot of that advice is unproven or completely false, but that doesn’t stop the perpetuation of these myths. To make sure you aren’t steered wrong, we’ll debunk some of the biggest myths about weight loss.
All Calories Are Equal
A calorie is a measurement of energy first and foremost, so it’s accurate to say that calories all have the same energy content. What gets confusing, however, is that not all calorie sources have the same effects on weight. For example, protein calories and carb calories are different, as they move through different metabolic pathways that affect the body in different ways. For example, protein carbs boost metabolism and reduce appetite.
Weight Loss Is Linear
People often assume that they must consistently lose weight and that gaining any back is akin to a relapse. It’s totally normal, however, for your weight to fluctuate along the way. Some weeks you may lose weight, and the next you’ll gain a few pounds back. This is not cause for alarm, depending on how full your digestive system is or if you’re experiencing an increase in water weight. So long as there’s a downward trend, you’re doing just fine.
Weight Loss Is All Willpower
Weight loss is within everyone’s reach, but it’s unfair to assume that someone who’s struggling to lose weight just doesn’t “want it” enough. Obesity can be a complex disorder with a multitude of contributing factors, the most common being variations in body composition. Different bodies have different needs for effective weight loss. Obesity can also affect hormones and biological pathways that regulate weight, both of which can be difficult to adjust once they’ve become dysfunctional. Otherwise, any number of factors, ranging from physical to mental disabilities, could prohibit weight loss more than a simple lack of willpower.
Fat Makes You Gain Weight
Rightfully confusing, the biggest myth about weight loss concerns fats in food as the sole perpetrators of weight gain. Fats are very calorie-dense and more plentiful in junk foods, but they’re no more harmful than calories and carbs as long as you’re ingesting a healthy range of calories. Diets that are high in fats and low in carbs have even shown to aid in weight loss.