We are bombarded daily by an overwhelming amount of information on diet and exercise. From low carb vs. low fat to aerobic vs. anaerobic, there are so many different plans and programs being hyped that the average consumer has difficulty knowing who or what to believe. Fortunately, we can eliminate many claims by focusing on what we know to be true, based on scientific research. For example:

-A person can lose weight through diet or exercise
Weight gain or loss is simply a matter of how many calories are taken in versus how many calories are burned off. If a person consumes more calories than they use each day, they will gain weight. Conversely, if a person uses more calories each day than they consume, they will lose weight.

-Weight lost during a diet will return after the diet is over
Since dieting will only lead to weight loss if the number of calories consumed is less than the number of calories burned up each day, ending the diet (which means increasing the number of calories consumed) will lead to weight gain.

-No one diet is better than the others
It doesn’t matter how the number of calories is reduced, just that they are reduced.

-No one exercise or exercise machine is better than the others
It doesn’t matter how the calories are being burned off, just how many. See above.

-The best way to lose weight is to reduce calories consumed AND increase the number of calories burned off
Studies show an individual is much more likely to lose fat and keep it off long term if they combine exercise with sensible eating habits. This fact is acknowledged by the diet pill and weight loss products industry via their disclaimer (usually in fine print) that their product (to be effective) must be used in combination with exercise and sensible eating habits.

A final note. A recent study found obesity was virtually non-existent in an Amish farming community despite a traditional diet heavy in meat, eggs, bread, and pies. What was their secret? Physical activity.lots of it. According to the researchers, the average physical activity of the community was about six times as much as participants reported in a recent survey of modernized nations.

Before starting an exercise program, you should consult with a physician. If you are interested in improving your health via exercise or have any questions regarding exercise and diet, please contact one of our specialists at COAST.