Carbs, fasting, thermogenics: nutritionist clarifies diet myths – 04/29/2022

In the rush to lose weight, many people end up doing so-called miraculous or very restrictive diets and believing in some myths on the subject. In the second episode of the third season of Conectação VivaBem, nutritionist Lara Natacci talks about the most frequent beliefs and myths surrounding the subject of diet.

How to identify if a diet is restrictive?

When it has much less calories than we would like or need to keep our body functioning properly.

Why do people want to lose weight so fast?

Because people are short-sighted and end up being seduced by the proposal of restrictive diets. According to Lara, when a person hears that a miracle diet will eliminate 10 kg in a week or 10 days, it is difficult for her, who wants to lose weight and who is constantly confronted by a standard of beauty, not to give in to temptation.

In the short term, the restrictive diet will work and the person will lose weight, even if based on suffering, the problem is up front: “No one is worried about the long term”.

Lara says that there are many risks, especially those related to fat accumulation and losing weight and regaining weight (accordion effect), which is bad. The time of weight loss considered healthy depends on the individual and metabolism, but the recommendations are 10%, 15% of the person’s weight in six months.

What is the main myth of a restrictive diet?

Think you will maintain the weight you lost. “It is very difficult for this to happen, 80% of people regain the lost weight after 2 to 5 years of a restrictive diet, that is, only 20% manage to maintain it”, comments the nutritionist.

What are the harms of restrictive diets?

The lack of nutrients. The body needs nutrients for metabolism and intestines to function well and also for good skin and immunity. “In the absence of specific nutrients, the body will not function properly, there may be some disease, malaise, dizziness, weakness, lack of disposition. Even the mood can change, because there is a lack of nutrients for the brain’s functioning to be ok. loss of muscle mass and the person can become flaccid, which is one of the consequences of a restrictive diet”, lists the nutritionist.

Does eating carbohydrates at night make you fat?

No, this is a myth. We can eat carbohydrate in all situations and at all times of the day, including dinner.

Although people see carbohydrates as the villain of the diet, the nutritionist gives some tips, such as prioritizing and consuming carbohydrates richer in fiber, which give more satiety, contribute to the metabolism and functioning of the intestine, help prevent diseases and have more nutrients, vitamins and minerals.

Is fasting always a great ally of the diet?

The answer is: it depends, each case must be individualized. If you are a person who usually eats dinner a little earlier and is not in the habit of having breakfast, you already do intermittent fasting, which is to go from 14h to 16h without eating. If this is your case, ok.

Now, if you usually eat and sleep a little later, and are in the habit of having breakfast, often doing intermittent fasting can be an assault on your body.

In addition, you may not be able to maintain the protocol that is to have balanced meals throughout the day, that is, you can even fast for a while, but then make up for it with other meals, which is useless.

“We really have good results in metabolic indicators for some eating strategies. But we need to see if it’s compatible with the person’s life and what other habits are like, because it’s not just about eating, but also about sleep, physical exercise, stress management, the way of eating, the environment and genetics”, says Natacci.

Is a menu full of light and diet foods perfect for losing weight?

Another myth. Lara explains that a nutrient present in a diet product/food can be substituted for another and the energy value is exactly the same. She gives as an example the diet indicated for a person with diabetes: there will be no sugar, but more fat.

Another situation is that people often choose diet and light, but eat twice or triple the amount.

Does drinking lemon water on an empty stomach help you lose weight?

“No, otherwise everyone would be thin”, says the nutritionist who claims to have no scientific evidence related to weight loss.

The expert cites that lemon is rich in vitamin C and has plenty of antioxidants, which is good, but on the other hand, lemon acid can be harmful to tooth enamel, a discussion that has been brought up by many dentists.

Do thermogenics help you lose weight?

Thermogenic foods, like coffee, pepper and ginger, are those that give the body a little more work and spend a little more calories to be digested.

But this additional expense is small and does not represent even 2% of the total caloric expenditure of the day. “Studies say they won’t make a difference in relation to changing habits of what we eat, it’s very little. We can’t consider this an advantage of these foods to lose weight”, says Lara.

Is eating several times a day better than skipping a meal?

It depends. For the person who is used to having three meals a day, breakfast, lunch and dinner, if she adds snacks to divide her food more, she will be increasing the amount of calories and with that she may gain weight.

With 30 years of consulting practice, nutritionist Lara realizes that most people who go a long time without eating become more anxious and overdo it with their next meal. “In that case, it’s worth planning a snack and moving the next meal to eat a little less.”

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She's our PC girl, so anything is up to her. She is also responsible for the videos of Play Crazy Game, as well as giving a leg in the news.

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