Not a lot of people know that counting calories (to the point of obsession) and excessive exercise to lose any excess weight is now just a thing of the past. The reason why so many people lose and regain the weight (popularly known as a yo-yo weight cycle) is because we try to apply a one-size-fits-all approach to everything, especially in our way of eating. If one of Hollywood's stars came out in an interview with a new diet craze, followers of the idol would eventually fall victim into thinking that he or she may get the same results, not knowing that what might be "perfect" for one, may make another pile on even more pounds than what he or she has initially lost.
Now, why the emphasis on muscles you might ask? Imagine your skeletal muscles -- muscles that are attached to your bones for movement -- as a furnace, constantly burning up calories just to keep them intact, even when your body is at rest. Yup, you read it right.. Your body is constantly put on burning mode if you gain and maintain the right amount of muscles, which are said to increase your resting metabolism by up to 10%. Research shows that muscles burn 7 times more calories than your lazy fat does. So in order for you to lose -- and keep losing -- your excess fat, it's good to invest in some muscle along the way and not just focusing on a drop in your scales.
Now, there are many ways on how you can gain muscles but still lose the fat. Of course, a tailored eating plan should be put in place since every individual is different; from one's lifestyle down to one's genetic make-up. For this reason, we always put value in constructing individualized nutrition programs for our clients.
Another way -- which most people usually overlook -- is having the right post-workout/ recovery meal right after you've sweated your heart out. Don't trick yourself into thinking that if you don't eat after exercising, you'll maximize the benefits of your workout. It is important to take in a balanced post-workout meal within 0-2 hours after exercise since it is during this time that muscle growth is at its highest. So it's only smart to "feed" your muscles so you can gain or maintain your muscles and not lose it in the process -- which then furthers you from your goals.
On this note, we have collaborated with Mooshi Green Bar and have formulated post-workout recovery smoothies, "Fitness Blends," perfect for those who exercise with the goal to manage their weight. These smoothies can cater to those who already or are planning to lead healthy and active lifestyles as well. Plus, they offer three delicious flavors to choose from! Love berries? Go ahead and take a dose of their Berry Protein Smoothie! Adore the tropical flavors of a Piña Colada? Take a plunge and order their Tropical Protein Blast Smoothie..all the benefits of the tropical fruits, minus the alcohol. And if you're a fan of peanut butter, have a go at their Peanut Butter + Banana Protein Smoothie. All three smoothies have been properly formulated and evaluated to promote better recovery and to make your workout count!
It is time to work smart, not work hard, to get you one step closer to your ideal weight! And remember, "healthy eating" to help manage your weight is not all about calories. It's a way of eating that, first and foremost, nourishes your body plus keeps it staying satisfied as well. Now, you might be wondering..Satisfied? Really? Before you raise your eyebrow any further, let me ask you this.. Did you know that the feeling of deprivation (as what usually happens when most people go on "diets") can actually make you put on more weight? Yes, it absolutely does! But more on that plus some easy eating hacks to "Lose Fat, the Smart Way" on our sequel to this article.
Let us know what you think about this article or if you'd like to share any of your suggestions, feel free to share your thoughts in our comments section below and we'd be more than happy to accept ideas on what we should be writing on next. 'Til next time! All the love!
Kyrene Gail Tiu-Ong, RND
Clinical Nutritionist Dietitian
DIETWISE NUTRITION CONSULTANCY