In the zeal to create the perfect diet plan, it’s possible to make mistakes in your diet that may halt weight loss success and prevent improvements in your overall health. These pratfalls can be easy to make even if you’re fully committed to improving your health with healthy eating and proper dieting.
You Believe Reduced Calories Means Healthy
A great many items on store shelves today use language like “reduced calorie,” “reduced fat” and “reduced sugar,” but a reduction of a particular component doesn’t always mean that food should be a part of a healthy diet.
For example, many retailers will label an item such as a breakfast muffin as “reduced calorie,” and lower the number of calories in their product by 50, but many times that muffin will still have a great many more calories than you’d want to consume in a healthy diet. The average blueberry muffin will contain anywhere from 350 to 550 calories (or more!), but all a vendor needs to do is reduce the calories slightly and place a “reduced calorie” label on the muffin to make you believe you’re eating something healthy.
Instead of eating foods with the word “reduced” as part of their title, look for diet foods that use the word “low.” Low calorie means a food should have significantly fewer calories than a non-diet counterpart. The same holds true for items such as fat and sugar. “Reduced sugar” is not the same as “low sugar” and reading the labels is essential for choosing the right food.
You’re Not Eating Enough
While conventional wisdom suggests that reducing your calorie intake will result in weight loss as long as the number of calories you burn is more than the number of calories you eat, losing weight too swiftly can have lasting negative effects on the body. Not only will losing weight too fast make it easy to pack those pounds back on should you stop dieting, but not eating enough can also push your metabolism to a crawl, making each pound you lose a more difficult pound than the last.
Creating a diet plan should never involve drastically reducing your caloric intake. In addition to making it more difficult to enjoy lasting weight loss success, too much of a calorie reduction can also make it easier to completely fall off the diet wagon and start a cycle of unhealthy binging.
Your Diet Isn’t Tailored for You
It is common to have a weight loss or exercise partner with whom to share the trials of weight loss, but each body is different and it’s rare that two people can eat the exact same diet and enjoy the same weight loss results. While creating an exercise plan to share with someone (or a group) can be easy, it’s important to identify how your own body reacts to certain foods and what diet plan will help you lose weight, because your individual diet may vary greatly from anyone you know.
Your best friend might plan to cut out all the carbohydrates in her diet, but you might feel unable to do so, especially if your exercise plan involves any endurance training. Your diet plan should be tailored for your own goals.