Q:  Can I really eat to lose weight?

A:  Yes, you can eat to lose weight if you make smart choices about what you eat, and eat more often.  Many people skip every meal right up to the end of the night and then eat for an hour straight.  Then they fall into bed exhausted, bloated, and attempt to sleep.  Any diet that has you skipping meals is a good diet to avoid.  A lack of food can slow down your metabolism, actually making it more difficult to lose weight.  Even taking the same amount of food that you consume right now and splitting it up into smaller meals spaced evenly through the day will have a benefit.  The more often you eat the less likely your body will go into starvation mode.  The human body is a remarkable piece of engineering;  if it thinks that there is a short supply of food, it will hold onto every calorie it gets for survival.


Q: 
I've tried lots of diets, why don't any of them work?

A:  Most diets are not a simple process.  Some are actually broken down into multiple sections and phases, requiring a near master's level of education to follow.  Some require expensive, exotic foods.  Some banish whole food groups.  It is enough to make a person crazy and raid the cupboard.  Habits are also hard to break, especially if you try to make to many changes at one time.  A simple small change, is a better option in the long run.  Once you have adapted to one change, it is much easier to move onto another and succeed.

Q:  Are all calories the same?

A:  A calorie is a unit of energy - enough energy to raise the temperature of 160 kilograms of water 1 degree Celsius. We tend to associate calories with food, but they apply to anything containing energy. For example, a gallon of gasoline contains about 31,000,000 calories. 

The number of calories in a food is a measure of how much potential energy that food possesses. A gram of carbohydrates has 4 calories, a gram of protein has 4 calories, and a gram of fat has 9 calories. Foods are a compilation of these three building blocks. So if you know how many carbohydrates, fats and proteins are in any given food, you know how many calories, or how much energy, that food contains.

If we're talking nutrition, it definitely matters where those calories originate. Carbohydrates and proteins are healthier sources of calories than fats. Although our bodies do need a certain amount of fat to function properly -- an adequate supply of fat allows your body to absorb the vitamins you ingest -- an excess of fat can have serious health consequences. 

So what happens if you take in more or fewer calories than your body burns? You either gain or lose fat, respectively. An accumulation of 3,500 extra calories is stored by your body as 1 pound of fat -- fat is the body's way of saving energy for a rainy day. If, on the other hand, you burn 3,500 more calories than you eat, whether by exercising more or eating less, your body converts 1 pound of its stored fat into energy to make up for the deficit.

Q:  Is breakfast really that important?

A:  In earlier questions we discussed bats, carbs, and proteins.  We also talked about eating smaller meals, and eating frequently, rather than poorly spaced, large meals.  One of the first minor changes a person can make to lose weight, if they are not already doing it, is by not skipping breakfast.  The word "break-fast"  defines exactly what is supposed to mean.  After a night of hopefully restful sleep, you wake up and break the fast that began with your last meal, and in many peoples lives, a midnight snack.  Skip breakfast and your body will punish you by sending messages of famine.  Your metabolism will slow, and you will suddenly feel starved.  Beginning your day with a well thought out, healthy meal will make you feel better, and help boost your metabolism.

Q:  What is the best exercise to lose weight?

A:  Any exercise that burns calories will help you lose weight.  You probably do more exercise right now than you give yourself credit for.  You may just need to change your eating pattern more to jump start your weight loss.  Gardening and yard work counts as exercise.  Grocery shopping can count as toward daily exercise as well.  The best exercise to lose weight is any exercise that you enjoy enough to consistently do it, and keep doing it.  If you don't enjoy it or get bored with the exercise that you are currently doing, switch to something that works for you.  Persistence definately pays off.  Don't be afraid to try new things, and drop the old that you don't enjoy.

How to Boost Metabolism to lose weight

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