The Secret to Successful Weight Loss (and it may surprise you) 😱
✅ Successful dieting- it’s all about eating less and moving more. Seems pretty simple, right?
Worryingly, by 2050 it is predicted that 60% of adult men and 50% of adult women in the UK will be overweight or obese (Public Health England, 2007). Perhaps dieting isn’t so simple?!
🤔 How do we know what we are talking about?! 🤔
Not long ago, we ran an experiment at university. We recorded and weighed ALL the food that we ate over one week and took body measurements (which were used in special calculations) to test the accuracy of our self-reporting. On average, our class of nutrition students under-reported their calorie intakes by 20% (that’s about 400 calories for woman and 500 calories for men!)
We aren’t alone- a study in The New England Journal of Medicine (Lichtman et al, 1992) found that there were significant discrepancies between self-reported calorie intake/exercise and actual calorie intake/exercise in obese subjects.
Think back to a time you last ate at a buffet- before long, it is easy to lose track of exactly what you’ve eaten and how much you’ve eaten.
❓ If we asked you to recall exactly what you ate in the last 24 hours, would you be able to do so? ❓
You might remember what you ate for breakfast, lunch and dinner, but would you remember those mid-morning biscuits, the chips you ate off your child’s plate or that bedtime bowl of ice cream? Perhaps not.
Overweight people are often baffled as to why they are so big- “I only eat small meals”, or “I eat healthily and do a lot of exercise- therefore is must be my slow metabolism” are phrases that dietitians and nutritionists often hear. But for the majority of such individuals, the real reason a lot of people struggle to lose weight is because they are not honest about the amount they are eating.
✳️ We don’t advocate obsessive calorie counting, but it is good practice to become calorie aware. Some people swear by calorie tracking apps such as MyFitnessPal, whilst others prefer to keep food diaries or even a mental note of what they have eaten. Do what works for YOU. But most importantly, be honest with what you’re eating, how much you’re eating, and why you’re eating. To be successful with dieting, you may need to first address some of the issues that are underpinning your desire to overeat.