The papers are full of reports again about weight loss and health. The BBC are reporting that cutting fat from your diet is more beneficial for health than cutting carbs (article here). Science Daily and the Daily Mail are reporting that avoiding trans fats is the most important fat to avoid (article here) and the Telegraph are also reporting on the dangers of fizzy drinks (article here). That’s a lot of confusing advice in 3 articles! How do you know what to follow?

Simply, do what works for you but there are some things you should bear in mind following that advice. Ultimately, it is about finding what works for you and makes you feel good but there are still some foods that should be avoided. Also, it’s really important to focus on more than just what the scales say. If you are increasing your exercise and combining it with better diet, you may not see weight drop off but you may see measurements decrease as you burn fat and increase muscle. Muscle takes up less room than fat so if the measurements are going down, there’s a good chance your fat levels are too.

I agree with the Telegraph article about fizzy drinks. They identified 11 areas of health which are affected by fizzy drink consumption and there are many more. If the reasons in there aren’t enough to make you reconsider your drink choice then I don’t know what is! It’s pretty frightening reading that you increase your risk of several diseases by drinking fizzy drinks. Swapping for the diet versions doesn’t help either and in some cases they can be worse. They’re often very popular choices with dieters as they are low in calories.

Water can help you feel better and improve productivity

Water can help you feel better and improve productivity

Also, thinking about your food choices is important. I really don’t advise calorie/points/syn counting as a successful and long term way to lose weight. It also doesn’t focus on the nutritional value of the food you’re eating, just how many calories/points/syns are in it. You can live on Mars bars and probably still lose weight if you kept to your daily allowance but what about the long term effect on health? It’s also important to remember that the body doesn’t treat all calories equal. There is also the myth that you need to create a 3,500 calorie deficit each week to lose 1lb. That’s also not strictly true as shown here

So what is the best way to lose weight? The answer is simple…eat real food! Eat food that makes you feel good and has nutrients in it not food that comes out of a packet and stresses your body when it comes to try and process it. The reality is, saturated fat doesn’t clog up your arteries and the evidence stacks up to prove it. Eating loads of carbs is not good for your health because the body stores the extra as fat and it’s mainly fat around your middle which is known to increase your risk of heart disease too.

Real food over processed food all the time

My advice for anyone looking to lose weight is this:

  1. Eat real food, organic if you can and locally sourced too.
  2. Focus on health not just weight. Look at how much better you’re feeling
  3. Eat a higher fat, lower carb diet which avoids things like bread, pasta and white rice as well as moderates the amount of fruit you eat. Avoiding sugar will help massively reduce food cravings too.
  4. Avoid foods that don’t make you feel good. For some people that’s dairy and for others there are certain vegetables which seem to affect them. Find what makes you feel good and eat it.
  5. Drink water, limit caffeine and alcohol and absolutely avoid fizzy drinks.
  6. Sleep and look after yourself. You can’t expect to lose weight by getting 4 hours sleep a night, working hard, partying hard and eating an ok diet. It just doesn’t work long term.
  7. Do this for the long haul not just a few weeks. It takes commitment but not willpower because once you’re head is in the right place, making the healthy choices becomes the easiest choice. There will be times when you slip but that’s ok. You’re human and none of us are perfect.
  8. Get some support in place. Find a friend who will support you or get the help of a professional. Most of my clients are amazed at how much money they save once they start working with me because they know what to buy and waste less food and therefore money.

I offer a complimentary call which gives you the opportunity to talk to me about your dietary and lifestyle needs. You can book hereĀ