Rumors about how to lose weight fast are hyped so often that they are almost believable. Most of them don’t work at all. Here are the top 4 leading myths.
The Myth of How to Lose Weight Fast
First off, quick weight loss is a big mistake. Short term benefits are an illusion, and long-term benefits are nonexistent. I outlined some of the most important problems with this concept in an earlier post here: Quick Weight Loss Not Beneficial.
Although the objections are obvious to those in the know, too many so-called experts in the weight loss industry are still spreading rumors about how to lose weight fast. The most common of these are:
Myth 1: Fat Can Be Spot Reduced
At the core of many weight loss programs is the notion that you can remove fat from specific areas of your body, especially around the middle, legs, or arms. Recommendations may include ab machines, diet pills, packaged diet foods, or even lotions or gels.
The truth is that spot reducing is not possible, unless you are willing to have it sliced off or sucked out by surgery. The biggest offenders in perpetuating this myth are manufacturers of all those ab machines, dozens of them, and the celebrities who are hired to endorse them. They don’t work! You do not exercise fat!
Myth 2: Cardiovascular Exercise is the Answer
Cardiovascular exercise may have its benefits. However, it is not one of the best exercises to lose belly fat. In fact, research shows that just the opposite can happen — i.e., typical cardiovascular exercise can lead to fat gain. Go ahead and do your obligatory hour on an exercise bike, treadmill, or stair master three times a week. Just don’t expect this traditional ‘long slow torture’ approach to help you lose weight. The main outcomes of such cardiovascular exercise are to accelerate your body’s inflammation load (NOT a good thing) and to speed up your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR). A higher BMR just means that you have to eat more to meet your body’s daily energy needs.
This earlier post gives you more details on Why Exercises To Lose Belly Fat Fail and what you can do instead.
Myth 3: Crash Diets Work for Long-Term Weight Loss
By now I would hope that everyone knows that this is a myth. Unfortunately, way too many people are still of the mindset that all you have to do for quick weight loss is to starve yourself. You know the old (incorrect!) adage: eat less to lose weight. The logical extension is: eat a lot less, lose more weight. This concept ignores so many important components of long-term weight management — food quality, hormone balance, age and health status, and many more — that it is patently ridiculous.
The only things that you will accomplish by crash dieting are lowering your BMR, being hungry all the time, and losing lean body mass and water weight. Health problems are sure to follow.
Myth 4: Homeopathic HCG Drives Fast Weight Loss
HCG (human chorionic gonatropin) is the hormone-driven weight loss protocol developed by Dr. A.T.W. Simeons in the 1950s. The hCG diet plan has been well-established through tens of thousands of clinical case histories as well as through recent scientific research (see this article on my hCG blog on this topic, here: HCG Diet Plan – Real Science).
Unfortunately, a few years ago scurrilous marketers invented something called ‘homeopathic hCG’ to capitalize on the success of the real hCG protocol for weight loss. The problem is that homeopathic hCG contains little or no hormone. The FDA finally took notice of this fake-product phenomenon and started sending cease and desist letters to online companies that were selling homeopathic hCG.
The FDA does not have enough staffing to keep up with all of the websites that sell homeopathic hCG, meaning that dozens of them are still operating. This is certainly a ‘Buyer Beware’ industry. I’ve posted some advice here on what to look for before you buy anything regarding hCG online: Warnings About HCG Drops.
What to Do That Works
Finding what works for you regarding weight loss — actually, fat loss — should be an ongoing discovery process. Many components of your daily life contribute to your weight management, including what you eat, your exercise program, your stress management (including quality of sleep), your supplemental nutrition, and your hormone balance (not just estrogen or testosterone). You can take a look at good strategies for long-term healthy weight management in a short book that I wrote to get you started. I don’t charge for it, so go ahead and see what it is about, and get your free copy, here: Belly Fat Book. I think this is a good starting point, although I might be biased since I wrote it!
That’s about all I wanted to say for now. Good luck!
Updating myths on how to lose weight fast,
Tommy@Getting Fit says
It is amazing all these late night infomercials selling spot reducing exercise equipment. Yes lose weight and get flat abs in 6 minutes a day.If it were that easy then there no be an obesity problem.