This week: 7 Top Tips for losing weight – Today: why cutting calories isn’t the answer

Top 7 tips on losing weight and body fat

This week I thought we'd kickstart the new year with looking at my Top 7 tips to help you lose weight and body fat. What is the latest science telling us? Let's start with a biggy: Why cutting calories won't help you lose weight long term. 

Historically you've been told to eat less and move more

For a really long time we've all been told that eating less and moving more will make us lose weight. But where this is true in the short term, in the long term this is not the way to go.  And here's why...

Why cutting calories doesn't work

I want to show you one of the most significant nutrition studies ever undertaken.  This study by `Howard et al. 2006 took roughly 50000 post-menopausal women and studied them for 9 years. 20000 of the women were put on a restricted calorie diet (reduced their diet by 361 kcals per day) by reducing their fat intake and increasing their fruit, vegetables and other carbohydrates. They also increased their exercise. Both groups were given nutrition education to begin with and the group on the restricted diet were given regular education and support throughout the process to keep them where they should be. In terms of methodolology it was the gold standard of nutrition science. 

So what did the results show? At first the restricted calorie group all lost significant weight, however, by 7.5 years on, despite staying on fewer calories and doing more exercise, the weight of the restricted calorie women had gone back up to match those that had not changed their diet.  And also of huge interest was the fact that all women, no matter which group they were in, had increased their waiste circumference.

Why Cutting Calories Isn't the Long Term Solution

So what does determine permanent weight change?

So if it's not calories that determine your weight long term, what is it? My personal research has led me to believe there are 2 main factors influencing our weight. The first is your gut microbiome and the second if your hormonal balance.  And that is why over the next few weeks I will be discussing these in a lot more detail with you all here and on my retreat in June. So join me on my retreat and/or watch this space...

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