Less is not always more

Published 8:46 pm Tuesday, July 28, 2015

By Erin Kos

My mother is one of the biggest influences in my life. So, naturally when she came to me with questions about weight loss, I was more than happy to help.

While sitting in my living room going through her diet, she expressed to me a frustration that despite the fact she “doesn’t eat much at all,” she appears to still be gaining weight. During our discussion, she described the food she was eating, which I noted were all healthy foods.

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As we continued to chat, I noticed a major pattern taking shape before me. She was not eating enough food.

Contrary to popular belief, eating one or two meals a day will not promote long-term weight loss. Your body is a very smart machine. As time rolls by, it catches on to the fact that you are not providing it with enough fuel to complete daily tasks.

This sets off an alarm, and your system begins to store everything you eat. It thinks it will not receive these nutrients later. This is called “starvation mode.” Despite all of your hard work to eat less than 1,000 calories a day to maintain that figure, the next thing you know you are gaining weight.

This is where many people get frustrated and give up. I mean, after all that suffering through your spinach-only diet, you ended up heavier. It seems the weight will never come off, right? Wrong.

Dieting does not have to feel like a death sentence. Your body needs nutrients to function, and when the proper balance is applied, you will be amazed at how well your body can transform.

Picture your body as your car. It can’t drive without gas, right? When considering a “diet,” take a look at what it entails. Is this something you can see yourself doing long term? Does it promote your overall health and well being?

Avoid the quick-fix diet. Choose a diet that ensures your body receives proper nourishment. It is also important to choose a diet that fits you and can be adapted as a lasting lifestyle change.

I always suggest diets that have you eating smaller meals multiple times a day. This will get your metabolism revved up and trigger your body to recognize that it can eliminate left over nutrients, because it knows they will be replenished. The next thing you know, your body has become a fat-burning machine.

Your diet should be high in lean proteins and contain proper portion-sized amounts of bright colored veggies and whole carbohydrates. Avoid processed and packaged items.

Think of it this way, the more your food is already broken down, the easier it is for your body to absorb it. This means more of the item is stored as fat in your body instead of eliminated as waste.

Processed foods normally contain significantly less nutritional value as well. Remember, your health should always come first.

Erin Kosanovich began her fitness journey in 2011. Having lost more than 70 pounds through proper diet, exercise, and consistency, Erin now competes on stages nationwide with the National Physique Committee.