Weight Loss and metabolism run hand in hand. By maintaining your metabolism at a normal rate, you will not experience weight gain or weight loss. However, the body is an amazing biological machine. Consider this: If you undereat, you will not experience weight loss and your metabolism will not be equalized so readily because the body’s reaction is to store body fat. If you overeat, your body will also add body fat, of course, you will need to begin a weight loss regimen and your metabolism will not be strong enough to work that fat off.
Our bodies operate much like the body of the caveman thousands of years ago, always doing what it needs to do to ensure that the body survives. If our bodies sense that it will encounter a shortage of food, it will store food as fat because fat is a more efficient source of fuel than muscle. During this shortage we think we’re entering a phase focused on weight loss metabolism but our bodies enter a starvation metabolism phase which forces them to convert food into fat even if we undereat.
During the days in which the caveman lived the next meal was not a guaranteed event so starvation metabolism was a blessing to survival. However, in today’s society, there is no reason to have to skip meals because food is so readily available. So, to force your body into starvation metabolism means you’re giving your body false indicators that it may encounter a famine when all you may be trying to do is to achieve weight loss by skipping various meals for a sustained and shortly defined period of time. Moreover, most people that begin a crash diet in order to lose weight tend to gain the same or more of the desired weight loss back because they tend to stray from the diet after a period of time. Straying will only add fat to the fat reserves inappropriately stored during the term of the crash diet. The solution to weight loss and proper handling of your metabolism is to engage in a program of balanced foods, exercise, good eating habits and positive thinking.
Weight Loss and the Basal Metabolic Rate
The basal metabolic rate is tied to weight loss because it is a measurement of energy efficiency. A good healthy basal metabolic rate contributes to weight loss. Weight loss does not result so easily if the metabolic rate is low. Food is the fuel that the human body requires to subsist. The human body converts food to energy which is used efficiently by each body cell. Your metabolic rate measures the rate at which the body uses this energy. The metabolic rate, not the basal metabolic rate, is measured in calories and does not remain the same over time. It varies over the course of the day and is dependent on weight, age, sex, sleep, diet, exercise, and thyroid hormone.
The basal metabolic rate, also known as BMR, describes the rate at which a body uses energy also, but, in a completely relaxed state. The basal metabolic rate is also measured in calories. One would measure basal metabolic rate probably in the morning after a relaxed nights rest before breakfast. One would have a higher basal metabolic rate if he is moderately active during the day and follows a healthy diet. The body would require more calories for convertible energy and would use them at a faster pace. One could eat more but the body would require it to allow for such an active lifestyle.
One that is sedentary, on the other hand, would not require as much energy or food to sustain a lifestyle. Without exercise or a balanced diet, this person is subject to a slower metabolic rate -meaning the body is working slower and does not require as much energy to survive. Therefore, a person with this type of slow metabolism would not be prone to weight loss.
Last Word on Weight Loss and Metabolism
Weight loss can occur if you understand your metabolism. A slow metabolism will most likely not result in weight loss, especially if your diet is slightly imbalanced. By speeding up your metabolism, weight loss is more easily achievable because your body requires more food to convert to energy. Do not starve yourself or skip meals if your goal is weight loss. You will most likely gain weight. Kickstart your metabolism by eating in the morning. I like fruit. You may opt for other foods. But eat!
Now that you’re eating, do not overeat and make sure you exercise. Eating a balanced diet of foods will provide you proper nutrients and minerals and also sufficient energy. Exercise will raise your basal metabolic rate and your body will burn energy faster, even while you sleep. There is no way around exercise. We are meant to exercise. We don’t exercise because our daily regimens have changed over the past 50 years. A statistic (see below) suggests that 65% of Americans are obese or overweight compared to 24% in 1960.
The most important piece of weight loss information you need to know is that we, as Americans, despite our advanced education, are fatter and more obese now than at any other time in our history. Information sources on weight loss suggest that weight gain and obesity in the United States has about reached epidemic proportions. In fact, theories and programs regarding weight loss abound. Around every corner, on every television, in many aisles of the supermarket one can find information about the next weight loss program that is guaranteed to achieve the weight loss results you seek more efficiently and with much less effort than previous weight loss programs.
Convenience has been relegated to paramount importance in our society. Didn’t it all begin at our gas stations? Remember the Texaco gas attendants running out from their clean, odor-free “offices” ready to service your car? They pumped the gasoline, washed you windows, checked the air pressure in your tires, all with a gleaming white smile. Then, those nice people were put out of work at the expense of self-service pumps and lower gas prices. Shortly thereafter, even those people hired to solely transact the gas purchase were replaced by credit card processors built directly into the gas pumps or they were asked to not only transact your gas purchase but to also pour your coffee and to sell you the morning newspaper from the all-purpose market that replaced the old “offices.”
Then fast food restaurants implemented the drive-thru window. We eat fast, talk fast, drive fast, work fast, exercise fast, gain weight quickly and desire to lose it quickly, intent on doing it fwith minimal effort.
Weight Loss Statistics
Weight Loss statistics suggest that the U.S. population has been getting progressively fatter with each passing decade. In 1960, weight loss statistics indicate that 24.4% of the population was overweight and obese. In 2001, weight loss statistics indicate that over 65% of adults are overweight and obese. Currently, 19.6 million men and 19.2 million women are obese which is a 61% increase since 1991. In 1991, only 4 out of 45 states that participated in the national institute of Health study had obesity rates between 15-19% of their adult populations. By 2000, 49 states had reported obesity rates of 15% and higher. Twenty-two of the 50 states reported rates of 20% and higher.
Percentage of overweight/obese US adults
There are myriad weight loss programs marketed today because the demand for them is great. One look at the weight loss statistics illustrated above and you know why. Demand for weight loss programs is great because we, as U.S. citizens, are larger and fatter than ever before in our history. Over 65% of American adults are overweight or obese today which translates to 97.1 million adults not finding success with weight loss.
There are many ways to achieve your weight loss goals. Natural weight loss without the use of diet drugs or weight loss plans is effective but you must first understand the difference between protein, carbohydrates and fat.
Weight loss and diet drugs seem the more “natural” way to lose weight these days because marketing advertisements make it seem easy. With one glass of water, a diet drug pill and no physical effort put forth, you, too, can lose weight. Lose as much or as little as you like by taking the magic pill. Weight loss and diet drugs is serious business. There are many success stories resulting from diet drugs but they must be used intelligently and with respect for your body. They are meant for the short-term treatment for obesity which is why eating behavior modifications and exercise are important long-term strategies.