Why Starving Yourself Doesn’t Work for Weight Loss
The road to significant and prolonged weight loss is simple: create a calorie deficit by consuming far less calories than your body burns. The greater the calorie deficit, the more significant the drop in weight will be. It would therefore make sense that if you significantly or completely cut off your calorie consumption, you will be able to enjoy accelerated weight loss, right? Well, not exactly. If weight loss were that simple, then we would all be model-thin. The truth is that starving yourself does not deliver the kind of results you would expect. The real results of starving the body are as follows.
Regardless of your diet, your body has grown accustomed to expecting a certain amount of food daily. So, if you refrain from eating, your body perceives that as a period of famine and therefore kicks into survival mode whereby it starts making efforts to conserve fuel while still providing enough energy to keep you alive and functioning for as long as possible without food.
Weirdly enough, the very first step your body takes is to start burning muscle cells and keeping any stored fat safely tucked away to use as the very last resort. The protein released from the burnt muscle cells is then converted to energy, which the body uses to carry out life sustaining functions such as breathing, pumping of blood, cellular repair, and so on. That same energy will also be used to enable the performance of whatever physical activity you engage in while starving yourself.
Since 70% of muscle is water, you’ll also get to lose some weight as every destroyed muscle cell results in the release of water, which will be eventually excreted from the body. That is the weight loss that people on a very low calorie diet experience during the first few days of inadequate eating or starvation.
Decreased Metabolic Rate
Another of the body’s reaction to starvation is to slow down the metabolic rate in a bid to conserve as much energy as possible. How far the metabolic rate drops will depend on several things including a person’s genetics, the duration of the starvation period, and just how severe the starvation is.
The loss of muscle in itself also causes the metabolic rate to drop. This is because muscle is a metabolically active tissue. Therefore, the less the muscle percentage in your body, the slower your metabolism will be.
For someone looking to lose weight, a slow metabolism is the very last thing you would want. A slow metabolism results in the body burning very few calories. So, even if you manage to lose weight it will be at a painfully slow rate.
As you can see, starvation is not a good idea when you are looking to lose weight. You not only lose the wrong kind of weight and feel miserable the entire time, but you also gain back all lost weight if not more after resuming your normal eating habits. And, if the starvation period goes on for a long time, it could lead to dangerous effects. It’s therefore advisable to avoid the temptation of starving yourself and instead create a healthy calorie deficit by combining smart dieting with a rigorous workout plan. Doing so is not only safer than starving yourself, but it’s also the most effective route to permanent weight loss.
If you are in my Facebook group you know that I’ve been on the Keto diet for the last few months. It is going quite well, especially when I can eat things like this keto cast iron blueberry cobbler!
I didn’t have much to lose (after losing 32lbs with diet and exercise) but I plateaued and wasn’t feeling hot. A lot of carbs and processed food had snuck back into my diet so I decided to buckle down and shed this last little bit. I’m down 8lbs and feel great.
Many people say that Keto is very hard and restrictive. I don’t find that to be the case. My diet was much more restrictive before Keto. Now I’m eating many more fats than I was before. I don’t go crazy – no bacon at every meal. Cutting sugar was the hardest. I forgot that it is pretty much in EVERYTHING but I quickly remembered when I started reading packages again. I already used swerve or stevia in my coffee so it wasn’t that big of a switch once I was mindful.
Does it taste like regular cobbler? No, it doesn’t but it is delicious. The almond flour tastes completely different than conventional flour. I’m used to it and like it. I’ve also made a version of this with coconut flour that was very good.
3 cups berries (I used raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries)
2. Place berries in a 6.5″ cast iron skillet and toss with Swerve, cinnamon, and salt.