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Girls often worry that cease to lose weight, and some seem to even gain weight on a diet, and all because of the “dead” or “broken” metabolism.

What is the problem? It is believed that as a result of long starvation diet combined with frequent exercise, the metabolism fails and breaks down, becoming so slow that no effort is no longer helping to lose weight, a person begins to gain weight just looking at food. Is it really so? In fact, it is not about the breakdown of the metabolism, and natural adaptation to the diet, because its purpose — to preserve life in the difficult survival conditions (a lot of physical work and little food is such conditions).


There are several mechanisms, which weight loss stops and looks like “dead switcheroo”, but is not.


But in the beginning of a more frequent and simple things.


Carbohydrates, salt and water balance


The most common reason for slow weight loss and what is considered a “broken metabolism”, here it is.


Usually people can easily and quickly dump 3-5 kg in the first couple of weeks of the diet, which is very encouraging. But rapid weight loss is due to getting rid of excess water and edema.



A typical diet for weight loss involves the restriction of carbohydrates (especially simple — flour, sweet) and a complete rejection of canned foods (sauces, pickles, marinades), sausages, sausages, cheeses, chips, pizza, and other salt overflowing with high-calorie food.


Carbs and salt that keeps water in the body. Reduce them easily relieves the person just sat down on a diet, the first few kilos due to the excess water.


After that, the rate of weight loss declines rapidly, because it connects adipose tissue, which goes much slower, 300-500 grams a week can be considered an excellent result.


But, moreover, that the speed of weight loss and has fallen so much after people eat some carbs or something salty, it will gain weight again because of the water. Hence the idea of a broken metabolism and weight out of thin air.




Less weight — lower metabolism


As soon as the person loses weight and becomes lighter, their metabolism naturally decreases — it needs less resources to serve a smaller body mass.


Metabolism (what man spends calories) consists of four components:


  • Basal metabolic rate is the minimum calories to sustain life.
  • The digestion of food. On average, diet it spent 10%.
  • Household daily activity: getting around the city, cleaning, grocery shopping, etc.
  • Fitness and different sports.

    Once you start the diet, each of the components is reduced.


    • Basic metabolism is reduced because the person has become easier. Easier people spend less calories at rest.
    • Less food — less calories spent on its acquisition. It’s just a “technical” point, because the amount spent on the digestion of calories in proportion to the received calories and to accelerate a metabolism, more frequent meals — fractional power — is impossible.
    • Domestic activity is also reduced on a diet. This is due to the decrease in the activity of the nervous system. The person becomes more lethargic during the day, moving smaller, faster tires. Where can I sit, he sits (transport, queue). He is not up the escalators and stairs himself and less walking, using transport, car and lift more often. On the day of training people outside the hall moves even less, because the forces on the activity is short. All this affects the overall calorie consumption during the day. All this is adaptation of the body in terms of hunger: move less and spend less, if you have limited resources — very helpful for survival.
    • Suffer from and exercise. Forces at the same intensity, whether it be strength or cardio, no longer. People who used to run every day for 30 minutes with good speed, conditional spending 300 calories per lesson and 2100 per week. After a few weeks on a diet workout becomes not as vigorous and intense on a quick run just no power, and the person goes for a walk. If you had had the strength to do every day, but now he begins to walk through time. May be reduced and the duration of the workout. And as a result, despite the fact that subjective feelings of exercise were heavier (from what we can make the wrong conclusion that the calories spent as before), now man burns for a week only 600 calories, which is two times less.


    In the end, it all makes the maintenance of the body smaller value (calories). Before, with the same weight and activity, it was a conditional 2000 calories, now — 1600, and if it is not taken into account, the weight loss will stop, for obvious reasons.


    It’s not a crash, and the body’s adaptation to starvation in order to survive if food is very scarce and threatened by starvation. If you suddenly became less salary, you will begin to spend less to live.


    Slowing metabolism

    Is there something that additionally improves the metabolism, besides the one described above?


    Yes, slowing the rate of metabolism is often a little above what can be predicted from the reduction of body weight and activity.


    That is, there is the extra expense “in excess”, but the figure is very modest — only 5% due to the reduction of hormonal activity (leptin and thyroid hormones).


    The biggest number you have found in research, it is an additional 10-15% to reduce the speed of metabolism.


    But it was notorious minnesotsky “hungry” experiment, when the subjects were brought to the point of exhaustion. After six months of starvation (very low calorie) fat percentage of the participants were incredibly low, but few of modern dieters will bring yourself to in order to be able to talk about a reduction in the speed of metabolism.




    A major role in the further decline of metabolism plays a hormone called leptin. Its role is to inform the brain about how the body’s stored energy.


    Leptin levels depends on the amount of fat in fat cells.


    • When a lot of leptin, the brain realizes that the body has enough fat (energy), therefore, to urgently replenish its stocks makes no sense. As a result, there is a strong sense of hunger and the metabolic rate at a good level.
    • When leptin little, for the brain is a signal that fat reserves (energy) is not enough, man eats little, which means hunger and possible death. As a result, it lowers metabolism and increases hunger.


    Thus, the fall in leptin diet causes a lot of things: the metabolic rate slows, hunger increases, thyroid hormones decrease, the level of testosterone falls, and a lot of other things start to go wrong.

    Almost everything bad that happens on a diet is under the control of leptin.


    Part of the problem with falling leptin decide Reidy.


    Can the reduction in metabolic rate during dieting stop weight loss? The last 80 years of research on the topic (in humans, not animals) say no.


    In one study in humans was not discovered stop fat loss in a controlled calorie deficit. Metabolism is reduced, but never enough to completely stop fat loss and even more so cause it to increase.


    Hunger, failures and wrong accounting of calories

    One of the famous adaptations of the organism to the diet — increase feelings of hunger. The reality is that to become a very “dry” means to be constantly hungry.


    Not all bravely put up with hunger, and many are faced with failures — uncontrolled eating of junk food almost in affect.


    About the failure no one likes to speak aloud. Moreover, people quickly and honestly about them forget about all unpleasant, while continuing to sincerely believe that food is strictly within 1200 calories.


    However, failure can easily reset the whole set for the week deficit and stop the weight loss.


    Of course, to the broken metabolism is irrelevant.


    Another problem, which looks like a “dead switcheroo”: slim people who want to become even leaner and drier, often inaccurate counting of calories coming in.


    They used to have a little, so measure the portions in the eye, do not keep a food diary, rely on memory (and memory is very selective, and about something to be eaten in the morning can be a evening to forget).


    Add to this that a person does not monitor a decrease in the activity and does not notice that spending less calories than before.


    Most of those who stopped losing weight and I am sure that killed/broke my metabolism, and unconsciously deceive themselves and wrongly believe (or not believe) calories.


    Usually, when poorly controlled 1200 calories becomes a well-controlled in 1250, weight loss magically resumes.


    Often people simply eat more than you need for the new metabolic rate that the diet was lower for the reasons described above.


    Once in 2-3 months should count your calorie intake, to correlate it with the level of daily activity (not pereeotsenivat it), the amount of training and the new body weight.


    Cortisol and swelling

    Most of the problems of the combination of very low calories and excessive cardio are associated with another thing that goes well with adaptive slowdown in metabolism: stress hormone cortisol and the resulting water retention.


    Cortisol has cross-reactivity with the receptor of aldosterone, the main hormone, otvechayuschie water retention by the body.


    It turns out:

    • A calorie deficit raises cortisol levels.
    • Cardio increases cortisol levels.
    • Psychological stress boosts levels of cortisol.


    That is, tons of exercise and fasting increase cortisol.


    Often the problem adds character, when a person is constantly stressed because he needed fast!!! urgent!!! even more!!! to lose weight right now!!!


    And when weight loss stops, these people are not only more reduce calories and add cardio, but began to panic about the lack of results, of which cortisol is chronically elevated, and the body retains water, which masks fat loss.


    Typical losing weight girl can lose up to 300-500 grams of pure fat per week. If it is stress (mental, dietary or physical) — the reason for the hold 2-4 liters of fluid, it is very long will see results with your diet. Fat goes away, but the swelling is camouflage.


    But very often after she heartily eats, especially carbohydrate food, and miss a few workouts, cortisol finally falls, and literally overnight you can lose weight by 2-3 kg due to getting rid of “stress” swelling.


    That is why the diet with a large calorie restriction is recommended every few days to arrange a carbohydrate load — Reidy.


    The increased cortisol also causes resistance of the brain to leptin. The result is not sufficient leptin sends signals to the brain with the corresponding decrease leptin effects, of which you read above. Body fat can be still enough, to have enough leptin, but cortisol does not give his mind to see.




    Typical scenario: at the beginning of the diet the weight goes away quickly, but after sitting on it for 1-2 months, one sees that the rate of weight loss is strongly reduced up to a full stop, despite a strict diet and plenty of exercise.


    There are several reasons:


    • A sharp discharge of water at the beginning of the diet and the belief that the weight would be so quick to fall all the time.
    • Eating does not take into account the reduced speed of a metabolism as you lose weight, do not recalculate calories at the new weight.
    • Imperceptible decline in daily activity.
    • Breakdowns, which are quickly expunged from memory, but reset the created deficit.
    • Careless attitude to calories, nutrition for eyes, without a diary, as a result of calorie deficit no weight loss either.
    • Too power hungry, too many exercises, too many worries about weight gain — all of this causes the body to hold water and mask fat loss.published econet.ru.


    Irina Brecht