Ideal Weight Loss Fairbanks, AK

A sustainable weight-loss plan must be simple. In other posts, I’ve talked about the dangers of believing  “the illusion of complexity” and that managing your health and weight is complicated. To review, click here. Today, let’s examine a common question and learn why the answer is crucial for creating  ideal weight loss conditions.

Exercise vs. Diet. Which One is Most Important for Weight Loss?

Both what you eat and how much you move your body  play a role in your ability to lose weight. The most important factor in weight loss, however, is always diet. Recognizing this truth is the bedrock of progressing toward a healthy weight. Many patients I speak with tell me they have tried diet and exercise but, “It didn’t work”.  It then becomes very easy for these people to wonder if they have a defect in their metabolism or maybe just bad genes. Both of these ideas must be removed from our thinking. They are self-defeating and guarantee failure. The ideal weight loss environment is created in the body when we consume less calories than the body requires to maintain itself, rather than training for many hours a week to  overcome  dietary mistakes. Exercise has many benefits as well, but for the average person trying to lose weight it is less important than diet. The battle is won meal by meal and day by day, and depends primarily on food choices.

You Can’t Exercise Away a Bad Diet

We are going to perform a simple exercise that will open your eyes and hopefully make you remember the importance of diet.  We have two contestants: Frank and Larry. Both weigh 180 lbs. In the same amount of time, one will exercise and one will eat. We set the timer for four minutes.

Frank loves to eat and  has a large “meat-lover’s” pizza and a medium cola that he is ready to tear into. Larry is standing on a treadmill and ready to run as fast as he possibly can for the entire four minutes.  Larry believes that with hard running he can burn more calories  than Frank can eat in four minutes. Let’s start the timer and see what happens.

As the timer starts, Larry sets the treadmill to 10 mph and begins sprinting. To burn even more calories, Larry inclines the treadmill to five degrees. At the same time, Frank begins to devour the pizza, washing it down with a swig of cola as needed. Two minutes in, Larry is already sweating and Frank has finished three slices of pizza and half of the cola. By the time the four minute timer goes off, Frank has finished over half of the pizza and all of the cola. Larry is drenched with sweat and completely exhausted. Larry comments that he couldn’t have continued at that pace for much longer.

The Result

Frank consumed 2200 calories within the four minute contest and felt that he could have  eaten  more if time allowed. If Frank is lightly active, 2200 calories could be more than his body needs for the entire day.

Larry worked as hard as he could during the four minute window and burned only 52 calories.

An Aside

Imagine if instead of pizza and cola, Frank is given a platter of broccoli and chicken breast, along with a glass of water. The result is dramatically different. In four minutes, Frank is able to eat two cups of broccoli and one large chicken breast, for a total of 322 calories. To make it even better, Frank is stuffed and will not feel the need  to eat for several hours.

In trying to create the ideal weight loss environment, it is necessary to keep it simple. One of the most fundamental ideas to remember is that you can’t exercise away a bad diet. Focus on eating real foods as they were found thousands of years ago. These foods will always be the most important factor in health and weight loss.

For more information on proper diet, please continue to  explore the blog of your trusted Fairbanks Chiropractors.

Click here for the Spaulding Chiropractic homepage.

For my philosophy on weight loss and how I can help, check out our Fairbanks weight loss home clinic page.