There is no shortage of weight loss advice on the internet.
Although some weight loss tips are good, others are useless or downright harmful.
Here are eight weight loss tips that you should ignore completely.
1. Always Eat Breakfast, Even if Not Hungry
Because of this, many people force themselves to eat in the morning, even if they're not hungry. However, eating breakfast isn't necessarily beneficial for losing weight.
In one study, people who skipped breakfast did end up eating 140 calories more at lunch than people who'd eaten a morning meal. However, at the end of the day, their total calorie intake was still 400 calories lower (3).
The idea that eating breakfast is important for weight control may be partly due to a survey of National Weight Control Registry members who had lost weight and kept it off for at least 5 years. Most of these people said they ate breakfast regularly (5).
However, everyone is different and some people clearly do better eating breakfast than others. If you're not hungry in the morning, then there's no reason to eat.
2. Don't Weigh Yourself Every Day
Your weight can fluctuate from day to day in response to several factors.
For this reason, people are often advised not to get on the scale every day when trying to lose weight.
While this seems to make sense, the opposite may actually be true.
In a six-month study, overweight and obese people who got on the scale every day took in fewer calories and lost an average of 10 lbs (4.5 kg) more than those who weighed themselves less frequently (11).
In another study, researchers looking at the weighing habits of 40 overweight people found that the more frequently participants weighed themselves, the more successful they were at losing weight (12).
It's important to keep in mind that your weight can fluctuate from one day to the next due to hormonal changes and other factors that influence fluid balance, along with bowel movement frequency. These changes don't reflect fat loss or gain.
However, weighing daily will provide accountability and confirm that your weight is trending in the right direction.
Bottom Line: Research suggests that frequent weighing actually helps you lose more weight, contrary to popular belief.
3. Do a Juice Cleanse
Juice cleanses, also known as juice fasts, are very popular.
Proponents claim you can lose up to 10 lbs (4.5 kg) in a week and rid your body of toxins.
But there is very little research to support the safety or effectiveness of juice cleanses (13).
Any diet this low in calories will cause weight loss, but it's unlikely to produce lasting results. A major issue is that a cleanse doesn't establish the type of healthy eating habits necessary for weight maintenance.
4. Don't Lose Weight Quickly
The conventional advice is to lose weight slowly so you'll have a better chance of maintaining your lower weight.
While it's certainly fine to lose weight slowly, the most recent research indicates that faster weight loss in the beginning does not increase the risk of weight regain. In fact, losing weight fast seems to be beneficial for long-term weight loss (18, 19, 20).
One study found that people who lost 1.5 lbs (0.7 kg) per week during the first month were five times as likely to have lost 10 percent of their body weight within 18 months as those who started off losing weight more slowly (20).
Bottom Line: Losing weight relatively quickly in the initial phase of a diet does not increase the risk of weight regain. It may actually lead to better results in the long-term.
5. Do Lots of Cardio
Cardiovascular exercise, also known as aerobic exercise, is excellent for your heart, stress reduction and overall health (21).
However, don't depend on it to help you lose weight.
Some people lose weight in response to cardio, others maintain weight and others gain slightly (24).
6. Minimize Foods High in Natural Fat
Avoiding all fatty foods when you're trying to lose weight is a bad idea.
Standard low-fat diets, with fat under 30 percent of calories, generally have a poor track record when it comes to weight loss.
By contrast, consuming fat-free or low-fat products in an attempt to cut calories could backfire. Many of these products are loaded with refined sugar.
However, although eating foods naturally high in healthy fat can work in your favor, putting a lot of added fat on your food isn't a good idea either. Adding too much fat can increase calories to the point where you won't lose weight.
All this being said, diets that are ultra low in fat (less than 10 percent of calories) may have some benefits for weight loss.
Bottom Line: Avoiding unprocessed foods that are naturally high in fat is a bad idea. The standard low-fat diet has a poor track record for weight loss.
7. Eat Every 2–3 Hours
You may have heard that it's best to eat many small meals throughout the day to keep your metabolism up. However, this is a myth.
Studies in people who consumed the same number of calories in two meals versus seven meals found no difference in calories burned between the two groups (34).
The main problem with snacking or eating several small meals is that you often end up consuming too many calories.
Bottom Line: It is a myth that eating many small meals boosts metabolism compared to eating fewer but larger meals. Increased eating frequency does not help you lose weight.
8. Focus on Calories Only
While a calorie deficit is needed for weight loss, calorie intake is only part of the story.
The type of food you eat has a huge impact on hunger, appetite and the hormones that control your weight.
These can affect your ability to achieve the required calorie deficit.
Finally, even if calories were the only thing that mattered, it's very difficult to accurately gauge how many you're eating. One study found that people with obesity underestimated their true caloric intake by 47 percent, on average (46).
Bottom Line: Calories are important, but food quality is just as important when it comes to losing weight and keeping it off.
9. Anything Else?
Although everyone is unique and there are differences among individuals, there are certain recommendations for weight loss that simply don't work for most people.
This article was reposted from our media associate Authority Nutrition.
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1. Stay Informed<p>A first order of business in pet evacuation planning is to understand and be ready for the possible threats in your area. Visit <a href="https://www.ready.gov/be-informed" target="_blank">Ready.gov</a> to learn more about preparing for potential disasters such as floods, hurricanes, and wildfires. Then pay attention to related updates by tuning <a href="http://www.weather.gov/nwr/" target="_blank">NOAA Weather Radio</a> to your local emergency station or using the <a href="https://www.fema.gov/mobile-app" target="_blank">FEMA app</a> to get National Weather Service alerts.</p>
2. Ensure Your Pet is Easily Identifiable<p><span>Household pets, including indoor cats, should wear collars with ID tags that have your mobile phone number. </span><a href="https://www.avma.org/microchipping-animals-faq" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Microchipping</a><span> your pets will also improve your chances of reunion should you become separated. Be sure to add an emergency contact for friends or relatives outside your immediate area.</span></p><p>Additionally, use <a href="https://secure.aspca.org/take-action/order-your-pet-safety-pack" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">'animals inside' door/window stickers</a> to show rescue workers how many pets live there. (If you evacuate with your pets, quickly write "Evacuated" on the sticker so first responders don't waste time searching for them.)</p>
3. Make a Pet Evacuation Plan<p> "No family disaster plan is complete without including your pets and all of your animals," says veterinarian Heather Case in <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q9NRJkFKAm4" target="_blank">a video</a> produced by the American Veterinary Medical Association.</p><p>It's important to determine where to take your pet in the event of an emergency.</p><p>Red Cross shelters and many other emergency shelters allow only service animals. Ask your vet, local animal shelters, and emergency management officials for information on local and regional animal sheltering options.</p><p>For those with access to the rare shelter that allows pets, CDC offers <a href="https://www.cdc.gov/healthypets/emergencies/pets-in-evacuation-centers.html" target="_blank">tips on what to expect</a> there, including potential health risks and hygiene best practices.</p><p>Beyond that, talk with family or friends outside the evacuation area about potentially hosting you and/or your pet if you're comfortable doing so. Search for pet-friendly hotel or boarding options along key evacuation routes.</p><p>If you have exotic pets or a mix of large and small animals, you may need to identify multiple locations to shelter them.</p><p>For other household pets like hamsters, snakes, and fish, the SPCA recommends that if they normally live in a cage, they should be transported in that cage. If the enclosure is too big to transport, however, transfer them to a smaller container temporarily. (More on that <a href="https://www.spcai.org/take-action/emergency-preparedness/evacuation-how-to-be-pet-prepared" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">here</a>.)</p><p>For any pet, a key step is to establish who in your household will be the point person for gathering up pets and bringing their supplies. Keep in mind that you may not be home when disaster strikes, so come up with a Plan B. For example, you might form a buddy system with neighbors with pets, or coordinate with a trusted pet sitter.</p>
4. Prepare a Pet Evacuation Kit<p>Like the emergency preparedness kit you'd prepare for humans, assemble basic survival items for your pets in a sturdy, easy-to-grab container. Items should include:</p><ul><li>Water, food, and medicine to last a week or two;</li><li>Water, food bowls, and a can opener if packing wet food;</li><li>Litter supplies for cats (a shoebox lined with a plastic bag and litter may work);</li><li>Leashes, harnesses, or vehicle restraints if applicable;</li><li>A <a href="https://www.avma.org/resources/pet-owners/emergencycare/pet-first-aid-supplies-checklist" target="_blank">pet first aid kit</a>;</li><li>A sturdy carrier or crate for each cat or dog. In addition to easing transport, these may serve as your pet's most familiar or safe space in an unfamiliar environment;</li><li>A favorite toy and/or blanket;</li><li>If your pet is prone to anxiety or stress, the American Kennel Club suggests adding <a href="https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/home-living/create-emergency-evacuation-plan-dog/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">stress-relieving items</a> like an anxiety vest or calming sprays.</li></ul><p>In the not-unlikely event that you and your pet have to shelter in different places, your kit should also include:</p><ul><li>Detailed information including contact information for you, your vet, and other emergency contacts;</li><li>A list with phone numbers and addresses of potential destinations, including pet-friendly hotels and emergency boarding facilities near your planned evacuation routes, plus friends or relatives in other areas who might be willing to host you or your pet;</li><li>Medical information including vaccine records and a current rabies vaccination tag;</li><li>Feeding notes including portions and sizes in case you need to leave your pet in someone else's care;</li><li>A photo of you and your pet for identification purposes.</li></ul>
5. Be Ready to Evacuate at Any Time<p>It's always wise to be prepared, but stay especially vigilant in high-risk periods during fire or hurricane season. Practice evacuating at different times of day. Make sure your grab-and-go kit is up to date and in a convenient location, and keep leashes and carriers by the exit door. You might even stow a thick pillowcase under your bed for middle-of-the-night, dash-out emergencies when you don't have time to coax an anxious pet into a carrier. If forecasters warn of potential wildfire, a hurricane, or other dangerous conditions, bring outdoor pets inside so you can keep a close eye on them.</p><p>As with any emergency, the key is to be prepared. As the American Kennel Club points out, "If you panic, it will agitate your dog. Therefore, <a href="https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/home-living/create-emergency-evacuation-plan-dog/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">pet disaster preparedness</a> will not only reduce your anxiety but will help reduce your pet's anxiety too."</p>
Evacuating Horses and Other Farm Animals<p>The same basic principles apply for evacuating horses and most other livestock. Provide each with some form of identification. Ensure that adequate food, water, and medicine are available. And develop a clear plan on where to go and how to get there.</p><p>Sheltering and transporting farm animals requires careful coordination, from identifying potential shelter space at fairgrounds, racetracks, or pastures, to ensuring enough space is available in vehicles and trailers – not to mention handlers and drivers on hand to support the effort.</p><p>For most farm animals, the Red Cross advises that you consider precautionary evacuation when a threat seems imminent but evacuation orders haven't yet been announced. The American Veterinary Medical Association has <a href="https://www.avma.org/resources/pet-owners/emergencycare/large-animals-and-livestock-disasters" target="_blank">more information</a>.</p>
Bottom Line: If You Need to Evacuate, So Do Your Pets<p>As the Humane Society warns, pets left behind in a disaster can easily be injured, lost, or killed. Plan ahead to make sure you can safely evacuate your entire household – furry members included.</p>
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