Dangers of Yo-Yo Dieting

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If you have ever been on a diet, you probably know what yo-yo dieting is. This is a term used to describe someone going on a diet, losing weight, and then gaining back more when they stop dieting.

Sadly, almost all people who diet go through this for a while before they eventually get it right. This can be frustrating and can also be dangerous for your health if it continues as a trend. Understanding the dangers of yo-yo dieting and how you can overcome this unhealthy dieting cycle can help you avoid doing it again in the future.

Read on to learn more about how this struggle can occur, the risks it poses and how you can avoid it.

Why Do People Fall Victim to Yo-Yo Dieting?

The biggest reason why people yo-yo diet is not because they want to do so. Nobody wants to work hard to lose the pounds only to watch them climb back on.  The intention is always to lose the weight, so you never need to see it again.  However, achieving that goal involves taking certain steps that some people are unaware of or are unwilling to try.

Everyone who starts on a diet wants to lose weight and they want to keep that weight down for the rest of their lives. This can be done.  Many people achieve it every day.  However, it often isn’t on the first try.  Many of the most popular forms of dieting set people up to regain the weight.

Unrealistic diets are the biggest reasons why people fail to keep weight off and go on a yo-yo dieting spree. Fad diets are often the cause, as well as extreme diets that are hard to stay on for even a short amount of time.  Dieters who are making their best efforts to get healthy and feel good about the way they look end up worse off only months down the road.

How to Avoid Rebounding Weight

Eating a calorie-restricted diet and exercising regularly is the way to go about losing weight that may not result in yo-yo dieting. However, it doesn’t stop there.  The specific method you choose will also determine whether or not the weight will come back.  Even a healthy dieting strategy can lead to returned body weight.   

What the person considering the diet must think about is the future. Is this eating plan something they can see themselves on in one or even five years? How about the rest of their lives? Most diet plans work if you stay on them long after you have lost weight. You cannot lose the pounds and then go back to your old habits the minute you see your goal number on the scale. If you return to the habits that caused the weight gain in the first place, then you will return to gaining weight.

Will You Be Worse Off?

Another danger of yo-yo dieting that you may not have considered is not only a cause but also a result. Depression can come at any time during dieting if you are not on a good diet that takes care of your health. Depression and sadness can come when a diet fails or stutters, leaving the door wide open to binge eating to deal with emotions. To avoid these feelings, think about your diet, exercise more, and talk with your doctor if feelings of sadness persist.

Furthermore, losing and gaining repeatedly can also be very dangerous for your body. Yo-yo dieting leaves you in worse shape than when you started. Many fad diets often neglect the exercise portion of weight loss. This means the dieter loses more muscle each time they diet, and they gain back pure fat. Since muscle helps to maintain metabolism, loss of muscle will result in a slower metabolic rate and your body will not burn energy efficiently. This, as you can imagine, leaves you in much worse condition even if you only gain back part of your weight.

Remember that while your eating habit changes are most powerful for weight loss, your exercise habits are most effective for maintenance.  Building both habits with the intention of keeping them up over the long-term is key to stopping your yo-yo dieting.