If you’ve ever tried a diet before, you may have been indoctrinated into thinking that the key to your happiness is “weight loss.” This is one of the slickest terms used in the diet industry because weight loss includes the loss of not only fat, but valuable lean muscle tissue and water as well. Muscle is essential towards building a healthy body, because each lb of lean muscle burns an additional 50 calories of fat per day and keeps our metabolism humming along. Proper hydration is also essential, because water is required in order for our organs and digestive systems to work efficiently at processing what we consume and for ridding our bodies of fat and harmful toxins. Many of the diet fads that claim miraculous results are simply masking water loss, and as soon as you begin to drink what your body requires, you’ll gain the lost weight back, plus some, because the necessary muscle that burns fat has also been compromised.
Quick-fix dieting has become so popular that in the past 10 years it's estimated that around 70% of our adult female population and 30% of adult males have tried some form of diet and failed over the long-term (Raising hand to be included in this statistic). There’s a new diet phenomenon occurring every few months, and the only long-term and lasting weight that we actually lose comes not from our guts, waists, hips or butts. It comes from our wallets!!
Most diets require a significant change in our normal eating habits over an extended period of time. This becomes the problem. We may try a new approach for a few weeks or even a few months. Once the success of the initial water weight we’ve lost begins to wear thin or we simply get tired of eating those restrictive high-protein, low-fat, low-carb, rice-only, green foods only, food that was blessed by a Tibetan monk only….OK…that may have gone a bit too far, but I’m sure you know what I mean. We simply want what we want and we like what we like because they fit in with our lifestyle and the people around us. Therefore, the key to truly making a change is to first change our minds so that lifestyle and the folks we surround ourselves with will also change. Something tells me you are beginning to see where this may be headed.
To lose body fat, we can’t focus just on caloric intake and macronutrient ratios. We need to plan out our meals so that we can decide what we eat and when. In addition, we must consume carbs, fats, and proteins in ratios that are best for burning fat. It is also vital that we eat these foods in a particular manner. That means gone are the June Cleaver days of only eating three large meals. Instead, we need to now target 5 to 6 times every 3-4 hours. As counterintuitive as this may sound, it really works!
About the Author: James Hackley earned a B.S. degree in Physics from Longwood College and an M.S. degree in Engineering from the University of Virginia. He faithfully attends Holy & Whole Life Changing Ministries International in Lansdowne, Va., and his latest book, Body, Mind & Spirit: The Awakening can be purchased by visiting him at www.jameshackley.com , www.Amazon.com, and http://www.barnesandnoble.com.