Hi friends, how are you all?
In my last post, we discussed metabolism, the very foundation of weight loss. You can read it here if you missed it. We also discussed why we gain weight at all, in the first place.
In this series, I am not going to give you tips on how to lose/gain weight or how to maintain weight. What I am trying to do here is to explain, in simple terms a few things such as:
- Why do we gain weight?
- How can we lose weight sustainably?
- How not to worry if you are doing everything right but still not losing weight?
- How to lose fat and not muscles/water?
- How to keep that hard-earned weight-loss forever?
I firmly believe that even if weight loss/gain/management is not easy, it should be a healthy and steady process. One should be able to make healthier and informed choices.
As for question no. 1, weight gain can happen due to lot of factors such as:
- Energy disbalance e.g. you eat more than your body burn
- Diet composition – means that even if you eat less or okay in terms of calories but the composition is not optimum for you
- Physical activity
- Sleep quality
- Hormonal profile
- Lifestyle choices
- Genetic factors – which is the reason for us to work harder rather than simply resigning to it. Afterall, it is just a higher-than-normal risk, not something that would necessarily come true!
Now that we know what are the most common reasons for gaining weight, we can see what is our weak area and work accordingly. I have written about it in past and on my Instagram stories, I keep sharing small tips and info for it too. You can join me on Instagram here, if you want:
Now, coming to the 3rd and 4th questions (will come to 2nd later), let us know what is body composition. It would tell us what kind of weight to lose and what kind to get on, even if it means no weight loss on your weighing scale!
Body composition is one reason why I wanted to be a Nutritionist as well as a Fitness Trainer, combined. I believe in a combined, holistic approach to health and fitness. Why? Because they go hand in hand, for optimal benefits.
In simple terms, body composition is the percentage of muscles, fat, water and minerals (e.g. bones) in our bodies. Two people with same weight can have very different body composition and thus, vary greatly in terms of overall health and fitness levels. For me (and most health experts), body composition is more important than just weight.
Body weight falling in average BMI category is very important yes, but after looking at BMI, it is also very important to have the right kind of fat/muscle percentage in the body. Too much of fat, especially around the belly area…even if your weight and BMI are normal, is still not healthy. It can lead to various diseases such as heart concerns, stroke, diabetes, obesity etc
Similarly unhealthy fad-diets, crash diets and prolonged fasting deplete our body of precious muscles. We might lose weight but most likely it would be muscles (and water and important minerals from our body). Not healthy again.
We any which ways lose muscles aka sarcopenia (and bone mass too) as we age and fastening the process with unhealthy diets and habits, just makes the matter worse.
How To Know Body Composition
There are several methods for it however, we might need one tool/machine or the other. Your nutritionist or fitness expert can help you with that. From basic tools like fat calipers to sophisticated BMI machines, pick whichever is accessible to you.
How To Achieve The Right Body Composition?
It isn’t hard. One needs to have a good balance of muscles, fats and minerals in body. Water too, of course but that’s for another day.
Right nutrition combined with a regular exercise routine can do that for anybody. It is that simple! Equally important is a right mindset which can learn to focus on a healthy weight, with a slow, steady and sustainable for life kind of approach. Throw in some muscles and you have got a winner!
- Right nutrition within your calorie requirements
- Having foods which are cleaner and satisfying
- Ensure adequate protein and fibre intake
- Physical activity and regular exercise
- Good sleep quality
- Avoid/low alcohol consumption
- Quit smoking
In The End
Just your weight is not an indication of good health and I am sure one can feel/notice that herself/himself. Good nutrition and regular exercise are critical for a good body composition and this comes with a host of other advantages such as strength and good health, in general.
Hoping that this second post today, in the series, helped you in understanding the basic concepts of weight loss.
Till next Friday,
Love, Health & Peace