The human body is perfectly engineered for survival in hard times when food is scarce. Nutrients are broken down and either used by the muscles, or stored in the body as fat. Today, we live in a land of plenty: food is everywhere.
It is common to eat more than your fill; It’s human nature. Excess calories are stored as fat to be used at a later date. The problem is that they never are. Instead, even more excess calories are piled on top of them and fat cells expand even more.
The common response in our busy lives is to attempt a diet. Some people can stick to a rigid diet and limit calories, others cant. Let’s assume that you are one of those people who is so determined to lose weight that your average meal looks like a rabbit’s. You limit your caloric intake enough that your fat cells shrink and you lose 20 pounds in a few months. As you ease off your diet and start eating normally, your brain, specifically your pituitary gland, which thinks that you have been through tough times and food is scarce, starts releasing hormones that make you hungrier and hungrier. Thats right, your body actually wants to put the weight back on. To satisfy this increased hunger, you turn to foods high in carbohydrates and fats. Your fat cells expand and within another few months you are back to where you started and consider dieting again. Don’t. Clinical studies have shown that 97% of people who lose over 100 pounds dieting will gain all of it back within 5 years.
There are a few problems with dieting. First, after you are done dieting, your body tries to gain the weight back. It is nearly impossible to fight your own body’s hormones and chemical responses to weight loss. Think of the models and people that you want to look like. They don’t diet for a few months, they diet forever, and that is very unhealthy. The second problem with dieting is that you don’t actually lose fat cells, they simply shrink. So when you are done with your diet, you haven’y actually lost anything.
The only way to actually lose weight and keep it off is to live an active lifestyle and surprisingly, get a lot of sleep. Studies have shown that getting less than 6 hours of sleep every night confuses the brain and causes it to release more hormones that trigger hunger.
So if you want to fit into that suit or dress next week, try a diet. If you want to fit into that suit or dress forever, be active.