By Head Coach Marcel Mandagaran

A lot of people have tried diets and programs that focus on portion control or taking in less calories than you burn. For example, “Weight-Watchers”. They focus more on How much to take in, instead of what to take in.  Even though it was a pretty nifty idea, this information is NOT only outdated but it is INCORRECT. As in, WRONG.  And by the end of this blog, we will have a better solution for successful weight/fat loss.

Today, Doctors are still prescribing this Calorie Restriction method, often to overweight people and those with diabetes. It’s hardly their fault though, since that’s what they’re taught in medical school. Can’t hardly blame those who struggled with weight-loss/weight-gain either. They’re simply following the doctor’s orders, “eat less and move more”. Of course, we absolutely agree with the move more advice, but not so much with the eat less.  It’s all about WHAT you eat and more importantly, what you don’t eat.

So, what is really going on when people restrict calories? When the human body is put into a caloric deficit, the body’s Metabolism will slow to match it, going survival mode (and not in the good sense either). Our bodies are very efficient and smart. If you’re not taking in enough calories, your body’s metabolism will drop to save energy. So now we have two big problem.

  1. the metabolism has slowed
  2. most people are still eating processed foods such as high glycemic carbohydrates and sugar as long as they aren’t going over their daily caloric intake of 1100 calories.

Not only has the metabolism slowed but now insulin levels have spiked due to the elevated blood sugar from the processed carbs. Insulin is a hormone the pancreas produces that allows the glucose to be used as energy or stored for future use. The problem is, far more is being stored then is being used. It’s this constant spike of insulin that is causing all the weight gain and health problem, making it a hormone problem, and not a caloric problem. Because of this constant insulin spike, the body is in constant burning sugar state, and is never able to tap into its fat stores.

Now a lot of the times, people will stay on these calorie restricted programs for years. Why? Because in the beginning they saw great results. First 3 – 6 months boom dropped 30 lbs. Now after metabolism has slowed and they continue to eat processed foods, the weight starts to come back on, and more times than not, they gain MORE than where they initially started. It’s hard for them to get off this flawed diet at first because their doctor still tells them to eat less, and second all they can remember is how success it was in the beginning.

So, what’s the solution you ask… Well everyone is different. There isn’t one magic diet that works for everyone. We do know for sure that most of our daily calories should come from whole foods (real food), meats, veggies, some fruit, very little starch, and No Sugar. Not processed junk. Here’s what we know for sure,

  1. Don’t be so concerned on how many calories you are taking in.
  2. Instead, focus on what you are taking in.
  3. Stay off the processed carbohydrates (breads, rice, pastas, fast food etc)
  4. Eat more healthy fats (Avocado’s, Nuts and seeds)
  5. Eat more protein (Whole eggs, grass fed beef, fish etc.)
  6. I’ll repeat—NO PROCESSED CARBS OR SUGAR!!!

Overall, professional help is our best recommendation, rather than just playing the guessing game. There is far too much false information out there, creating more confusion than solutions. Also, the good old, “my friend said to do this, and it will work” usually isn’t very successful either. There are professionals out there with the recent proper knowledge that can really help. Let them do their job, which is to help people. Invest in it once and you can use what you learned for the rest of your life. Nutrition is the foundation of a healthy lifestyle. If you don’t have proper nutrition everything else will come crumbling down.


Check out this link from the CrossFit Health seminar: CrossFit Health Seminar Dr. Jason Fung does a great job of explaining the problems and dangers in being in a caloric deficit. He also talks a little bit about Intermitted Fasting, which is absolutely great for losing weight and shredding fat and could be beneficial to a lot of people under the supervision of a professional. Intermittent fasting is something we also teach. 

If you or someone you know struggles with weight loss or other related issues, don’t hesitate to contact us. We can help. Just book your Free Nutrition Consultation

Stay Healthy My Friends,

Marcel

REFERENCES:

CrossFit Health

What is Insulin?