Have you been exercising rigorously? Do you feel that no matter how hard you work out in the gym, you are unable to see any results? Well, sometimes, simply exercising may not be enough if you do not pair it up with a healthy lifestyle. Luckily, there is no need to panic. Today, we are going to tell you about 4 diet mistakes you have been making, along with tips to improve the way you intake calories without even changing what you eat. If you follow these simple tips, you will be able to boost your metabolism and burn that annoying belly fat in no time.
1. Believing That Midnight Snacking Is A Complete No-No
Well, this is actually just a myth. Many people feel that eating food late in the night leads you to gain more weight since your body’s digestive system is not as effective as it is during the day. However, it does not matter what time of the day you consume a meal. What matters is what you choose to eat rather than when you choose to eat it. In fact, researchers found that people who ate their largest meal of the day during breakfast put on more weight than people who chose to eat their largest meal of the day after 8 pm. You should only be worried about midnight snacks if they are extremely high in calories.
2. Trying To Boost Your Metabolism Rate By Consuming Small Amounts Of Food Throughout The Day
This method of boosting your metabolism is completely ineffective. Many people believe that constantly eating throughout the day in moderation can help increase your resting metabolism rate because you are keeping your digestive system active at all times. However, there is no real link between your metabolism rate and the number of meals you consume in a day. If anything, you may end up gaining more weight by trying this method since you will not be able to keep track of how many calories you are consuming in a day.
The best way to increase your metabolism rate is by building more muscle (1). The more muscle you have, the greater the number of calories your body burns in a day. Each muscle requires a minimum of 6 calories a day to sustain itself. However, each pound of fat only requires 2 calories a day to sustain itself.
3. Trying To Lose Weight Fast By Consuming Fewer Calories Than Your Daily Requirement
While this is indeed true, it may not seem very effective in the long run. Depending on the kind of lifestyle you lead, the average number of calories a woman should consume in a day for her body to sustain itself is 1200 calories. Men, on the other hand, require a minimum of 1800 calories a day for their body to sustain itself (2). Consuming fewer calories than your daily requirement means that your body needs to break down its own cells to release energy. This means that you may notice a rapid reduction in weight very early on into the diet. However, this comes at the cost of losing muscles that, in turn, reduce your resting metabolic rate. A lower metabolic rate would mean that it would take you much longer to get rid of weight once you are off the diet.
4. Believing That Some Foods May Possess Fewer Calories But Make You Gain More Weight
This is true. Not every calorie of food that you consume is burned at the same rate. When you consume a meal, you end up burning almost 30% of every ‘protein’ calorie in the digestive process. Similarly, you burn 6% percent of all ‘carbohydrate’ calories and only 3% of all ‘fat’ calories in the digestive process. This is known as the Thermic Effect of Food (TEF). In an article, published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, it was found that meals that take the longest to digest have a very high TEF (3). Therefore, you should try and consume meals that are higher in protein and lower in fat. This not only ensures that you put on lesser weight than a meal that is high in fats and low in protein but also gives you the freedom to eat more food since you know that you will be losing almost 30% of the calories you ate in the digestive process itself.
Now that we have debunked some of those unusual dieting myths, you can focus on the best ways of losing weight at a quicker pace than before. Remember, it does not matter when you eat your food or how you eat it. What matters is what you eat and how well you pair your meal with exercise. The secret to a healthy lifestyle is to boost your resting metabolic rate.