Healthy ways to lose weight without losing muscle weight | Health

Weight loss is a key therapy for people with obesity as it reduces metabolic risk factors for diabetes, heart disease and cancer, but it is also important to maintain overall body function, good physical activity and a regular fitness level, ideally by maintaining muscle quality while losing fat safely. The main flaw with the concept of weight loss is the very name itself – “lose weight”, because what you specifically want to lose is fat mass, not your body's muscle mass.

Losing weight by reducing fat mass is what we consider healthy weight loss, for good metabolic health you need to increase muscle mass and reduce fat mass. Ironically it's much more muscle mass and losing even a small amount of muscle mass can lead to a drop in weight on the scale which is why body weight or even BMI (derived from your metabolism) are not accurate indicators healthy.

In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Mugdha Pradhan, functional nutritionist and CEO and founder of iThrive, advises, “What matters is what we call ‘body composition,' which is measured by tracking body fat percentage. Body Fat Percentage Can be difficult to measure – instead, you can track your size in a mirror or measure your waistline. Higher fat deposits around the waistline are called “central obesity” and are particularly associated with poor health outcomes. Weight loss is a huge industry, and there are “millions of different services, products, and sources of information today that can help you lose weight. Some of them are downright fraudulent or even dangerous, while most others are only partially effective because they only focus on one factor that promotes weight loss. “

She adds, “Exercise plans for weight loss don't solve diet, and even most nutrition plans focus only on calorie intake, which is a small factor. To lose weight the right way (by losing fat, not muscle), You need to take a holistic approach. Hormonal issues, thyroid dysfunction, gut issues and toxin overload can be a combination of factors that can be at the root of obesity in many people.”

She advises, “The best option is to get a full health assessment and work with a functional nutritionist or other holistic health practitioner and start with all aspects of your diet and lifestyle. It's important to make sure the weight loss is sustainable This can be achieved by gradually changing your diet and lifestyle rather than jumping onto a strict crash diet. Most of the time, rapid weight loss by restricting calories on a very strict diet results in a substantial loss of muscle mass.”

Vasundhara Agarwal, Diet and Lifestyle Consultant, recommends 4 healthy ways to lose weight without losing muscle mass –

1. Increase your protein intake: A high-protein diet boosts metabolism, reduces hunger, promotes weight loss and helps preserve lean muscle mass. This is because protein contains amino acids, which are the building blocks of muscle tissue. Therefore, increasing your protein intake can help prevent muscle loss. The distribution of dietary protein intake throughout the day is as important as total daily protein intake.

2. Ditch Excessive Calorie Restriction: Losing weight requires a calorie deficit. However, excessive calorie restriction can lead to muscle loss rather than weight loss. Muscle loss is preventable, as long as you eat enough calories, you can achieve weight loss.

3. Never completely avoid fat: Healthy dietary fats are necessary for the overall health of the body. Unsaturated fat is an excellent addition to a muscle-building diet because it helps fuel your muscles. Polyunsaturated fats and monounsaturated fats are both types of unsaturated fats. Unhealthy fats such as saturated and trans fats must be limited. Therefore, the right fats can promote weight loss and maintain muscle mass.

4. Drink plenty of water: Water can help you lose weight because it naturally suppresses your appetite and boosts your metabolism. It's calorie-free and helps you burn more calories. It is also important in promoting muscle growth because it delivers the nutrients needed to produce protein and glycogen structures, the building blocks of muscle in the body. These advantages were magnified when sugary drinks were replaced with water.

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