Don’t Waste Your Time With These Terrible Diet Advice
It’s a new year and everyone is on a diet – I mean, a wellness trip. Whether you want to lose weight or not is none of my business, but I’m asking you to please let all of the following stupid life-hackers lose weight. Many of them border on erratic eating behavior , while others are just ways to make yourself miserable for no reason. (By the way, if you feel like your relationship with food is out of control, the National Eating Disorders Association has a review tool, helpline, and other resources here .)
Small plates don’t make us eat less.
It’s a classic: by serving yourself a smaller plate, a small amount of food is supposed to look bigger. Thus, in general, you will eat less food and eventually lose weight.
But our brains and bodies are too smart to be fooled. The idea that smaller plates encourage smaller portions came from a lab that was later revealed to be doing schematic research practices . Other labs have done their own experiments with plate sizes and have found that people do n’t generally eat less when given smaller plates . What’s more, we’re better at judging portion sizes when we’re hungry . In the end, breaking the little plate did not deceive us.
A glass of water will not satisfy your hunger
There is a common healthy eating advice that says that if you are hungry, you should drink a large glass of water, because sometimes our body cannot distinguish between hunger and thirst signals.
But there is no evidence that this is true or that a glass of water will help. One of the oft-cited articles on hunger, thirst, eating and drinking found that we actually get a little hungrier after drinking, so even if our bodies did indeed mix signals, the proposed solution is unlikely to help. .
Ultimately, there’s nothing wrong with drinking a glass of water if you think you might like it, whether you’re hungry or not. But don’t be fooled into thinking that hunger pangs are your body telling you that you’re thirsty. Your body knows the difference between food and water, okay? That’s why you haven’t died of starvation or dehydration yet.
Eating like a bodybuilder is not necessarily a good idea.
There is a stereotype that bodybuilders only eat chicken breast, brown rice and broccoli from small plastic containers. They eat in a disciplined manner and end up shredded, so it must be a healthy diet, right?
While it can be a great meal if you like it, this combination isn’t the best or only way to cook, especially if you’re not a fan of the individual ingredients. Chicken breast and rice are known to be unforgiving when it comes to cooking. They tend to dry out, especially if you cook them without marinades or sauces.
So put aside your idea of what healthy food looks like and make a plan that includes the foods you really enjoy. Switch to chicken thighs , learn how to use a good marinade , toss dry rice in a waffle iron, or just make a completely different recipe. It’s okay if the food is delicious.
Oh, and while we’re on the subject of bodybuilding habits: no, lots of small meals don’t “boost” your metabolism .
It’s a diet, not a lifestyle change
The latter is not so much a life hack as an oft-repeated platitude: “This is not a diet, this is a lifestyle change.” If you are trying to lose weight, please don’t make it a lifelong process. Dieting is conscious malnutrition. If you want or need to do it within a short time, then make that choice and do it in the healthiest way you can. But as soon as you lose weight, return to the full nutrition of your body again.
After all, it wouldn’t be healthy or smart to lose weight forever. Since we lose weight by consuming fewer calories than we burn, the exact foods and habits that help us lose weight will not be the ones that help us maintain our ideal weight when we reach it. At the very least, you will have to increase the portions.
So if you feel like your current diet or habits need to change, be sure to separate what needs to change overall (like cooking at home more often) and what needs to change temporarily (like smaller portions). Healthy eating and malnutrition are not the same thing .