This is THE MOST IMPORTANT summary of THE MOST IMPORTANT issue regarding how we lose fat.
I believe this to be the absolute definitive answer of the most intense debate amongst the zealots of the health industry. In the weight loss industry there tends to be 2 types of people; those who count calories and those who promote quality of food and life. A line in sand has been drawn and an epic war of monumental proportion has evolved.
It is so easy to take sides. The reality is that both are important. Each of us has individual fuel efficiencies- Our metabolisms operate at different speeds dictated by genetics and hormones. People often forget that everyone is completely different. A deficit of calories for one person may be a surplus of food for another person. You MUST be in your own calorie deficit in order to lose weight.
Our calorie zealots fail to acknowledge that our own individual conditions of energy efficiencies can be changed. Now, we don’t know by how much, and we can’t exactly point a finger at exactly how. We can make assumptions that regular exercise and eating patterns, a low stress lifestyle, and consumption of nutritious foods can make a difference.
Hormonal ranges such as cortisol levels and thyroid output directly influence your metabolism. Over exercising, under-eating and not getting adequate sleep can down-regulate hormone levels (measured by lab ranges). In extreme circumstances hormones can down-regulate enough to result in diseases such as hypothyroidism.
Down-regulation of hormone levels means that your individual efficiencies- your metabolism can slow making it much harder to lose weight.
Next time you come across the battlefield of calories in/out vs food quality and lifestyle understand that they both have relevance.
To maintain long term weight loss, a high protein intake and a low glycemic diet will give you better chance of success. Only approximately 17% of people can lose weight and keep it off. Combine both the nutrition with having high daily activity levels and avoid being in the 83% of people who don’t succeed.
Larsen, T.M., et al. Diets with high or low protein content and glycemic index for weight-loss maintenance. N Engl J Med. 363(22):2102-2113, 2010.
Did you know that not getting enough sleep could cause you to eat over 500 calories additional per day?
Not getting enough sleep can cause appetite problems. It’s very easy to confuse being tired with not having energy. Food supplies us with energy, it doesn’t stop us being tired. Often this is mistaken.
If we were sleep deprived for an entire year that could result in gaining over 25kg of fat!
REFERENCE: Brondel, L., et al. Acute partial sleep deprivation increases food intake in healthy men. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition (published ahead of print; available online March 31,2010)