Are a good diet and exercise both crucial for weight loss?

With restrictions finally lifted and summer on the way, the motivation to diet and exercise is greater now than it ever has been.

And with that comes the range of questions associated with exercise; does diet really matter? Can I just exercise and eat what I want? Does my diet really matter when I exercise?

Although I would love to say all you need to do is exercise, for the most efficient weight loss a combination of  a clean diet and exercise is the best way.

And this can be achieved in a number of ways, and doesn’t mean going on any crazy diets. Rather it is the complete opposite, and with a little willpower much easier than you might imagine.

diet and exercise

Diet and exercise go hand in hand

When we exercise your body uses the energy from the food you provide it to fuel yourself through that exercise.

When you feed your body sweets and treats, your body automatically stores these as fat reserves because naturally we are built this way in case of food shortages.

However, with the surplus of resources we now have available, if we don’t exercise our bodies will not use up these fat reserves and just keep them.

Now lets look at the alternative where you are exercising but don’t give your body the right fuel:

Lets say you are exercising 2 hours a day, but you aren’t giving your body enough energy or the right amount of energy to carry out the exercise.

You might be okay for the first day, and maybe even the second (although I highly doubt it) and by the third day your body is giving up on you because you aren’t giving it what it needs.

This is an extreme example, but the point is that if you give your body what it needs, it will give you what you want.

Alternatively if you don’t give your body what it needs, it doesn’t have the fuel or resources to deliver.

And equally if you give your body too much of what it doesn’t need, it’s going to store those reserves rather than using them, and that isn’t what you want either.

Long term gains over short term pleasure

So what is the solution to this? Well the reality is that sometimes the only person standing in your way is you.

If your long term goal is to be a healthy and happy person, but your short term self wants to eat foods that don’t benefit your body, perhaps it is time to make some changes.

An easy tip to try and help you make better food choices is to reduce the amount of choices you have to make. Let me explain.

Tip 1

If you have the option of eating healthy or unhealthy food in your home, the chances are you will go for the unhealthy food because – let’s face it – it is more tasty.

But if it was not readily available and you were hungry, you would have no choice but to eat the healthy food.

Tip 2

With the busy lives we live, another easy tip is to try and plan what you will eat beforehand and prepare those meals for when it is time to eat.

In this way you have done all the hard work of deciding, and when it comes to eating, you just get to enjoy your nice and balanced meal.

It definitely is easier said than done, but implementing these small changes can make a big difference and ensure your diet isn’t holding you back from achieving your long term goals.

How To Fix Easy Weight Gain And Difficult Weight Loss

Easy weight gain and difficult weight loss? Today’s blog post is about why gaining weight is so easy, but losing weight seems so difficult.

Although there are some people who struggle with trying to put on weight, the majority face the battle of trying to keep it off. Many times we find ourselves working so hard to lose the weight for months, and yet can pile on the pounds within a few weeks.

So how is that fair?! And why does it happen? Unfortunately I can only help with the second question!

Why Does Weight Gain Happen So Easily?

In an ideal world I would love to say if it isn’t your fault, but in this particular case, it is your own previous self who has caused this issue for you. Unfortunately it’s not the extra doughnuts or cake that you ate last weekend. Instead it’s your fat cells that have formed.

What Are Fat Cells?

This process begins in your infancy through to your early 20s where the number of fat cells in the body increases. When you start consuming a high-fat diet, your body reacts by producing white fat cells or adipose tissue. Once you hit mid-20s your body maintains and protect the fat cells you have created over this time period. This then becomes your homeostasis condition and what your body recognises as ‘normal’.

These fat cells will then remain and can grow or shrink based on the type of diet a person consumes. After we have created these fat cells even if we go on a diet we can only shrink them, but they will not entirely disappear. As a result, if we ‘fall off the wagon’ it is much easier to put on the weight again because these fat cells will easily return back to a ‘normal’ size again.

Now you might say, we are all doomed. However, there are many other contributing factors which can help or hinder this weight journey and the process that comes with it.

Are Diets To Blame For Weight Gain?

One of the reasons many people struggle with weight is the never-ending dieting culture we live in. Magazines are constantly trying to give us new ways to lose weight, to name a few including Atkins, Keto, Paleo, Cleanse, etc. The list goes on and on. When you follow these diets you are essentially ‘starving’ your body of what it is asking you for. As a result when you go back to eating ‘normally’ your body will either start storing this food in case you decide to do another diet, or will make you eat more in order to make up for the shortage. Many studies have shown the hunger you feel after a diet is up to 3 times stronger, and so you will overeat to compensate for this increase in hunger.

How Does Mindset Relate To Weight Gain?

Many of us have tried these diets and not managed to stick to them. But why is this the case? Your mindset has a MASSIVE part to play in this. Normally when we diet it’s like a switch in our brains. Once we start a diet, we tell ourselves we are ‘on’ and work really hard to stay on track. But as soon as we are ‘off’, the majority of people will binge eat and ‘treat themselves’ for working so hard. These types of diets can be a quick fix over a short period of time, but they are not built to be sustainable food choices. Neither in terms of keeping the weight off, nor continually doing for months or even years.

In order to stick to a diet it needs to be sustainable and affordable food choices that we could follow or revert back to easily. In my opinion that isn’t a ‘diet’, it’s a lifestyle. And finding a food lifestyle which works for you can be challenging, believe me. There are so many factors to consider including physical movement, exercise, country, religion, culture, accessibility to raw materials, finances etc.

What Is The Best Course Of Action?

My advice would be to try and see what you are consuming in the day, and when you are consuming them. Many of us enjoy evening treats but this might be the underlying issues. I think everything should be eaten in moderation and so eating lots of salad won’t fix the problem. On the other hand, limiting the desserts and snacking will. Trying swapping in healthier fruits and veg to replace daytime snacking. And if you read my blog post last week you will know how important it is to stay hydrated! Drinking plenty of water will definitely help you to stop overeating and help you build better long term habits.

I would also say that it is possible to follow a healthy lifestyle and not give up all the cultural food you are eating. Try adjusting ingredients for healthier alternative so that you can still enjoy your food in a better way. Moreover, making more homemade food and maintaining control over portion size and ingredients will be much more beneficial than eating out. Always remember that eating out is a treat, and so it shouldn’t be indulged in too much.

Try This Behavioural Science Hack!

I love giving you little tips and tricks you can use as home which are well known behavioural science concepts. An easy way to reduce food intake it to use a smaller plate. The smaller size will trick you into thinking you are eating a large amount of food and this can instantly help you to stop over eating. 

Additionally, using a red plate instead of a white one can instantly help with this process. Colour psychology has shown individuals intake less food when eating out of red plates. You can read my post on IGGI to learn more about your food biases and this intriguing product.

That’s all for today folks! I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed writing it. If you have any comments let me know, I love to hear from you all!

IGGI Bowl: The Latest Technology for Effortless Weight Loss

What is the IGGI™️ Mindful Eating Bowl?

What is the IGGI Mindful Eating Bowl?

I was sent this article named by my dad a couple of days ago. It was about a bowl which claimed to help ease weight loss through ‘Calorie Cloaking’. The name of said bowl was IGGI™️ Mindful Eating Bowl. The French invention and Indiegogo project was fully funded in 2 hours!

Today I am going to discuss how this allegedly works. And if in fact you can trick yourself into consuming less calories using IGGI.

IGGI uses 'Calorie Cloaking'

‘Calorie cloaking’ is what IGGI use as their main selling point. Through the design, IGGI can trick your brain into believing you are consuming around 900 calories. In actual fact you only consume 600 calories. The picture below shows the ‘dip’ in the bowl used to calorie cloak that extra 300 calories. The physical restrictions of this design mean intake is cut by 33% on average.

Is there any science behind IGGI?

From my understanding and experience of biases, it is entirely possible for IGGI to be an effective way to control food intake. This concept originates from the Delboeuf Illusion relating to relative size perception. Consider the image below:
 

In this image we have two orange discs. One with a large ring around it and one with a smaller ring. Despite both these middle orange discs being the same size, our minds trick us into thinking they are different sizes. 

This bias has led to studies regarding large and small plate sizes. They argue if smaller plates are used, it can reduce overall consumption of food. The bias makes us perceive we have eaten a large amount of food. As a result we feel satisfied after the meal.

Furthermore, studies have indicated consumption differences between plates and bowls. Individuals tend to serve themselves and intake less from bowls, when compared to plates.

Other design features?

IGGI is a Japanese inspired stoneware bowl. 100% eco-friendly, BPA & plastic free, microwave & dishwasher safe. Additionally IGGI comes with a bamboo leak proof lid. As well as this they provide a bowl section guideline. This ensures you eat the correct portion of fruit & veg, pulses, proteins and carbs.

Why is it red?

Although the red may seems slightly off putting to eat from, that is kind of the point!

Colour psychology has shown that individuals intake less food when they eat on red plates compared to white plates. Using this combination IGGI has created a product which uses all your biases against you. Hence it helps you easily stop overeating.

Is IGGI the answer to all my diet prayers?

Although the science behind this is sound, I am still skeptical that this concept would work in all instances. Recent studies have argued that with mild amounts of food deprivation this may not work. Results have indicated that food deprivation makes us less susceptible to these illusionary biases. So we will definitely notice those 300 missing calories being ‘cloaked’!

Since this is a fairly new product, it will be interesting to see to what extent IGGI works. Despite my reservations, I am very intrigued to try this ‘calorie cloaking’ experiment on myself!

Please see the video below for more information about this product! 

If you have any thoughts about the IGGI™️ Mindful Eating Bowl please leave them in the comments below!

Check out my other blog post: How To Fix Easy Weight Gain & Difficult Weight Loss

Other Info

This is not an affiliated / paid review. 

All images of IGGI™️ Mindful Eating Bowl are not my own, and are used from online sources. Links to sources are available through images.