On our blog we spend a lot of time talking about the things you can do to better your life. It occurred to us that it is quite possible for you to be doing all kinds of great things that are recommended but sort of killing those positive effects that would normally be seen by doing some not so great things. Even more possible is that you don’t even realize what you are doing is a no no. So, we thought we would focus on physical fitness for a few blog posts and talk about the dos and don’ts of physical health: weight loss and exercise do nots!
While we like to promote positive thinking which goes along with focusing on what-you-can-do and just expecting that the what-you-can’t-do sort of falls in place. The logic here is that it’s hard to be doing the right thing and the wrong thing at the same time, so if you are doing the right thing you must not be doing the wrong things. This is so true in so many circumstances. HOWEVER, the issue is that often in the case of things like diet and exercise people think they ARE doing the right thing- and they aren’t.
This particular post will focus on things you don’t necessarily want to do with regard to dieting.
- Crash Diets: There are so many people who do them, and so many products you can buy for them. Basically all you have to do is cut back on your food intake in an extreme way for a certain period of time and you lose weight. What the people that do them, and the products that promote them don’t tell you is that crash diets leave you with a very very high chance of gaining all the weight back and some. Not only that, but it doesn’t teach you anything about how to care for your body in a way that leaves you liking how you look and feel long term. It is a short term solution that doesn’t last, and it is terrible for your system to shock like that.
- Avoid Certain Cleanse Diets: Some people are huge proponents of doing cleanses. Others aren’t. This is something that should not be consider lightly and should be discussed with a doctor or nutritionist before taking part in. It is worth noting though, that often what people don’t know is that a cleanse will actually strip you body of “everything” and as we all know everything means the good and the bad. This isn’t a great plan as we need certain bacteria and things in our digestive track for it to work efficiently.
- Diet Pills: PLEASE DON’T TAKE diet pills. Unless you can verify that the diet pill is literally just a dose of vitamins and minerals that are often correlated with weight loss diet pills are not recommended. First, it is not a sustainable plan. Second, it is not a healthy to take diet bills. Third, the long term effects of certain diet pills can be very serious (including high risk of Alzheimer’s).
- Beware of Salads: Many people think that because they are eating salads they are eating healthy and will lose weight. This is not always the case. Portion control is still important. If you are eating huge salads you are still training your body to think it needs larger portions, when it actually doesn’t. Also, be aware of what is in your salad. Things like cranberries and honey roasted nuts are packed with sugar. Most dressings are not recommended as they are loaded with empty calories, and crackers and croutons still count as crackers and croutons even when they are atop a pile of greens.
- Avoid Diets with Little Variety: If you are trying out your will power by doing a diet that requires you to eat the same thing every day, you are most likely going to find yourself sneaking off to enjoy something different. ANYTHING different. In this desperate moment there is a good chance that good decision making won’t be in place and you will error on the side of something delicious. Some people are huge on food so just eating something for the sake of getting their fuel for the day is all food is. Others, the majority us I would think, eat for fuel and because they enjoy the food itself. Try to avoid diets that don’t have much of variety to them.
- Avoid Diet Foods: Just because it says “low fat”, “sugar free”, or “only 120 calories” does not make it healthy. In fact many of the foods and drinks that have to market this are actually by nature awful for you. Anything that uses a sugar substitute like Equal or Splenda has an ingredient call aspartame. It is not something you want to put into your system. When you ingest things that aren’t good for you, you are messing with how well your body functions. So you might drink a 0 calorie soda but what’s in that soda might mess up how your body digests the sandwich you have at lunch. That is just a hypothetical situation to show the point. When in doubt go for these less processed (or not processed at all).
- Binge Eating is a No No: Binge eating functions much like a crash diet. First, its not a long term plan. Second, you will gain the weight back and some. Third, you will only torture yourself with a strict diet only to destroy all the work you have done by binging afterward.