What is yo-yo dieting?
When dieting becomes part of who you are, you’ll find yourself caught up in yo-yo dieting. Yo-yo dieting is what happens when someone loses a lot of weight, gains it back and then loses it again.
But yo-yo dieting is actually repeatedly losing weight regardless of the amount. If you lose five pounds, gain it back, then lose it again, that’s yo-yo dieting. Any amount that’s lost and regained repeatedly qualifies as yo-yo dieting.
You might think that the benefits of losing weight are what count regardless of whether or not you gain it back. This is a mistake. Yo-yo dieting is harmful to your body.
How does the body react?
When you engage in this kind of dieting behavior, your body will start to fight back. It does this as part of a survival mechanism. When you lose and regain repeatedly, your body gets the wrong signals and tries to fight against starvation.
It holds on tight and makes it tougher for you to be able to lose any weight. So in the future, you might start losing less every time you try to diet because your body is working against you.
This can start to rack up the extra pounds and cause you to become heavier than you were before you ever started the diet. Some people become obese because they engage in state of constant dieting where they deprive themselves and then overeat.
What are the risks?
Yo-yo dieting can lower the amount of good cholesterol you have in your body and raise your risk of having a heart attack or heart related disease. When you focus your life around diets that have a yo-yo effect, it can take a toll on your emotions.
You’ll feel happy and excited every time you lose the weight but then sad every time you see a weight gain. This can lead to depression especially if you’re around other people who have dieted and successfully kept the weight off long term.
Yo-yo diets take such a toll on your health that they can actually shave years off your life span. You can break the cycle of yo-yo dieting so that it stops being part of who you are.
What are the alternatives?
When you want to lose weight, don’t think you need a quick or big change. Instead, make small changes that you can incorporate into your life.
When we make huge changes in our eating patterns, we can rebel mentally especially if we have an emotional attachment to food.
Understand that you will have days when you’ll feel like you blew it with the way that you eat. Just remember that if you eat healthy and you exercise, you will lose weight without having to rely on one diet after another.