Can dieting actually make you fatter?!
Up until the point that I got my gastric bypass, I was a yo-yo dieter and only getting fatter. I had tried diet pills in high school and was perpetually on/off Weight Watchers in college. I was actually down 90 pounds and only 10 away from reaching my goal weight when I started regaining it all back. My cravings increased and I started eating bigger and bigger portions until, finally, I retained 80 pounds and couldn't lose it no matter what I did.
To be honest, I thought I was just a crazy loser for not being able to control myself better. Now science is saying that it actually had to do with what dieting did to my brain: cutting calories changes your metabolism and brain so that the body hoards fat and the mind intensifies food cravings into an obsession.
Read more ¿Qué más? Want to know what's really making us fat?
Now that explains a lot! Not in a good way, but it's interesting to learn the real reason why so many diets fail. The new research has confirmed the not-so-pleasant news, proving that "dieting raises levels of hormones that stimulate appetite and lowers levels of hormones that suppress it." The Daily Mail in the UK reports on the rest of the study:
Brain scans reveal that weight loss makes it harder for us to exercise self-control and resist tempting food. Worse still, the more people diet, the stronger these effects can become, leaving some almost doomed to being overweight as a result of their attempts to become slim.
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Well, that's not exactly outstanding news, is it? I'm actually quite sad about this, since it may be a big reason why the obesity epidemic is only growing. All of those people that are overweight are actually making themselves obese by dieting. It's not good to hear that "our basic human biology is the greatest enemy of committed slimmers." Basically, if you get fat, you're very likely to stay that way for life. Science doesn't seem to have a solution to that problem yet, but maybe they will some day.
In the meantime, my money's on eating healthier but still allowing for a few indulgences-- that way you lose weight so gradually that your metabolism doesn't think it's starving and your brain doesn't go crazy craving the food you're not allowed to have since you're allowing yourself a little bit of it. Perhaps that's the sane way to stop all of the yo-yo dieting once and for all.
What do you make of the news about the real reason why diets always fail?