What is behind these weight loss myths? An expert speaks plain language


Writed by - Andy Gocker
  What is behind these weight loss myths? An expert speaks plain language
Many diets are not a permanent solution. © WAYHOME studio/Shutterstock.com, SpotOn

Interview with Petra Bracht

In order to lose weight quickly, many people still resort to a wide variety of diets and weight loss methods. But which variants really make sense and which are just a myth? dr med Petra Bracht, nutrition expert and author of the recently published book 'Klartext Weight Loss', explains in an interview with the news agency spot on news.

Is it true that you gain weight if you eat dinner after 6 p.m.?

dr medical Petra Bracht: Yes. While it's true that eating in the (late) evening is more likely to make you gain weight and isn't conducive to sleep, it depends on what's being eaten and drunk throughout the day. There are morning grouches who only eat their first meal around midday, so that they do not eat more within 24 hours than people with breakfast habits. This eating rhythm is cultivated by people who practice intermittent fasting according to the 'eat for eight hours and don't eat for 16 hours' method. Therefore, they can eat until 8 p.m. in the evening. People who start the day with breakfast and practice the 8/16 interval should have their last meal in the late afternoon. Due to the working hours this is not always possible. Then the eating phase is increased to ten hours so that regeneration can still take place during the fast and a good night's sleep is possible.

Is it true that losing weight gets harder with age?

Brought: Yes. And for men and women. With age, all activities of the body decrease, including losing weight. Because fat burns fewer calories, weight loss slows. In addition, the metabolism is throttled and as a result the basal metabolic rate decreases, so that less energy is used and weight loss slows down. Physical activity also decreases with age, so less energy is used and it becomes more difficult to lose weight.

In addition, hormones play a role. From around the age of 40, the estrogen level in women drops and promotes fat storage on the abdomen. This process intensifies during menopause. From the early 40s, men produce less testosterone, and the growth hormone somatropin, which helps to break down fat, also decreases.

Is it true that spices like cayenne pepper and cinnamon help with weight loss?

Brought: Yes. Cayenne pepper reduces appetite and therefore food intake. In addition, consuming cayenne pepper increases body temperature. The resulting heat increases the body's energy turnover, so that calories are burned more quickly. These effects should not be overestimated. But every little helps.

Cinnamon leads to slower gastric emptying. As a result, the feeling of fullness lasts longer after meals and you eat less. In addition, the insulin level is lowered so that less sugar is transported into the cells, but more body fat is broken down. Like cayenne pepper, cinnamon is also considered a warming spice. The heat development consumes additional energy and so cinnamon can promote weight loss.

Is it true that drinking ice water burns more calories?

Brought: Yes. Cold water is heated to 37°C in the stomach before it is passed to the intestines. The energy expenditure associated with a regular glass of ice water is around 25 calories. If you were to drink ten glasses of cold water a day, that would be 250 calories.

Incidentally, cold water, despite being warmed up, is released into the intestines faster than hot water, as it takes longer to cool down to 37 °C.

Is it true that low carb helps you lose weight permanently?

Brought: No. Low carb comes in many varieties with quite different results. The usual low-carb variant leads to a relatively quick weight loss, but this is not permanent, since the diet is usually not maintained for long for reasons of taste. Incidentally, all sorts of health problems arise with prolonged use of effective low carb.

Is it true that fructose is the better sugar?

Bracht: Yes. Fructose used to have a very positive reputation because it is metabolized by the body without insulin. This was good news for diabetics and resulted in the food industry producing all kinds of diabetic products. This, however, promoted the obesity pandemic, so that the good reputation turned into the opposite. The fructose that is ingested with fruit is now considered unproblematic, while the isolated fructose that is used by industry and in the home to sweeten is considered problematic.

Is it true that juice cleanses help you lose weight?

Bracht: Yes. Juices can help with weight loss, but it depends on which juices are consumed and how much of them. The fruit content and the associated calories in juices range from very little to 100 percent. It also depends on what is consumed apart from the juices.

Actually, it is better not to consume the juices, but to consume the fruits and vegetables directly. As a result, not only the juice is absorbed, but also the valuable dietary fiber that has been separated in many juices. The dietary fibers in particular contribute to filling the stomach and thus to satiety and make an important contribution to losing weight.

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