If your goal is to sue, start by asking yourself what you are trying to achieve: weight loss or fat loss? You may be surprised that these two terms are not necessarily synonyms.
Weight loss versus fat loss
While we often rely on the scale to validate whether we are doing a good job of sticking to our diet and exercise regimes, it is not always the best indicator. For example, if you notice that your pants become loose but the number on the scale has not changed after you have lifted and done HIIT training in a few weeks, does that mean you are not getting in better shape? Obviously not! (Related: 15 underrated weight loss tips that actually work).
Losing weight refers to any combination of fat, muscle or water, according to Cedrina Calder, MD. Just because you lost weight does not always mean that you burst fat, which is the key to maintaining optimal health and ward off cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes, for example.
“Fat loss is what is important for better health, but when you lose weight you will also lose weight and probably also lose muscle mass. If you are overweight, fat loss is important to lower the risk of heart disease,” Calder says. “Actually, Fat loss will improve your overall health, as excess body fat increases the risk of chronic diseases. “
Visceral fat is especially important. This is the type of fat that wraps around your abdominal organs deep inside your body. Although it is also called belly fat, it is not always clear how much visceral fat is lurking inside you. Your doctor will need to order a specific type of imaging test to accurately assess how much visceral fat is attenuating your organs.
So when trying to lose weight, the focus should be on fat loss, according to Calder. It is also very important that you maintain as much muscle mass as possible, too Muscle tissue burns more calories than body fat – even when your body is at rest.
How to achieve weight loss and fat loss
“To lose weight, you should reduce your calorie intake by first eliminating processed and sugary foods from your diet,” says Calder. “Incorporate lean protein, whole grains, fruits, vegetables and healthy fats into your diet.”
In addition, you need to increase your exercise routine so that you can burn more calories on a consistent basis.
“Unfortunately, there is no way to target fat alone when losing weight,” adds Calder. “However, there are things you can do to reduce the amount of muscle mass lost.”
For example, avoid drastically reducing your calorie intake and make sure you get a sufficient amount of protein in your diet. (For help, here’s exactly how much protein you should eat per meal.) Calder also recommends doing excessive amounts of cardio; instead of more strength training in your week.
Finally, aim to drop about 1-2 pounds per week. This approach is much more sustainable than dropping 10 pounds in just two weeks. After all, the ultimate goal is to keep away the unwanted fat – right?
For workout tips, be sure to check out Best Ways to Stay Fit in 2021, according to Celeb Trainers.