The Hindering Impacts of Yo-Yo Dieting

If you're like most people, there's been at least one occasion in your life where you've been on and of weight loss diets in what seems like a matter of weeks. You try one new diet out, see few short-lived results, have a minor-set-back, and then are on to the 'next best thing'.

As you go from weight loss diet to weight loss diet, you typically lose those same five pounds each time, but in many cases, you wind up gaining another seven back between stints.

While this will definitely leave you feeling frustrated and fed up with dieting altogether, it does much more than that.

Let's have a quick look at some of the biggest impacts of yo-yo dieting so you can see just how devastating this is to your long term health.

 

Increased Total Body Fat Over Time

Have you ever seen somebody in the gym who looked to be small in size yet really did not have any degree of firmness to them? This is what commonly represents the term 'skinny fat', and is a condition where there is very little muscle mass on the body but a very high amount of body fat despite the fact that the individual really isn't all that big to begin with.

One of the worst outcomes of your yo-yo dieting attempts is that with each crash diet, you lose precious lean muscle mass.  This lean muscle mass is essentially what fires up your metabolism and helps keep you lean throughout the day.  As you lose this muscle, you wind up gaining even more body fat than you had before because now your metabolism is really crawling along.

Then you come off the diet, eat at a higher calorie level with that now-slowed metabolism, and you're really asking for trouble.

Over time as this process repeats itself, you lose significant amounts of muscle and add significant amounts of body fat.  What you're left with is a very soft, fatty version of yourself – one that you definitely were not going for with your first diet attempt.

 

Skewed Cravings

People who yo-yo diet are also far more likely to suffer from high-fat cravings.  Reaching towards that tub of ice cream? Or perhaps the pizza has been taunting you from the freezer.  Years of yo-yo dieting will make these cravings even more powerful and you'll really struggle to fend them off.  

This will make future dieting attempts even more difficult, further setting yourself up to not see success.

 

Reduced Self-Efficacy

Imagine going through the experience of starting up and coming off diet after diet after diet.  What is this going to do for your levels of self-confidence regarding dieting?

Not much.  People who are constantly yo-yo dieting have very little belief that they can actually succeed with a weight loss diet and therefore set themselves up to fail before they get started.  If you can never break free from this yo-yo dieting pattern, it's very unlikely that you'll ever develop a healthy relationship with food – one that will allow you to lose the weight.

Sadly, because of the unsound diet approaches that many people are choosing, they're already working against themselves from the get-go.

So start paying attention to healthy diet tips.  Don't fall for those 'quick-fix, lose-10-pounds-this-week' approaches. They will not work and often only leave you with more body fat than you began.  If you want to get a great body in the long run, nothing will beat the classic healthy diet that includes all food groups and proper portion sizes.

It's not fancy and it's certainly not magical, but it does work.


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