Why They Don’t Want You to Lose Weight

The global weight loss industry is worth many hundreds of billions of dollars annually.  We want to lose the weight and ‘they’ want us to pay them to do it.  The reality is that if we all suddenly became thin super fit and healthy or worse yet simply happy with ourselves many billions of dollars would be lost in revenue to some of the biggest companies around the globe.

Now, this is not to say that companies are actively trying to keep us overweight, some may try to make us feel insecure about ourselves but I don’t think they are intentionally feeding us junk food just to make money from us at the other end, we do a pretty good job of that ourselves.  Companies will however, do whatever it takes to make us think we need their business to get in shape. Below I will describe 5 things to watch out for so that you can avoid falling into their traps.

The Sports Drink Myth.
Many consumers don’t realise that marketing is not just about telling people what they should buy; today it’s more about making us desire their products on a subconscious level.  I believe sports drinks can fall into this category.  Often people begin exercising, they run go to the gym, join a zumba class etc.  They begin to feel great and start to think of themselves as an athlete.  Subconsciously they know that as an athlete they should be drinking sports drinks and so they do.  This is fine if you're running marathons or taking leisurely 100 mile bike rides on the weekends but for those who are primarily interested in losing weight it can be a big mistake.  These drink contain carbohydrates which are designed to provide a fast resupply of depleted energy.  Carbohydrates are not a bad thing but if you are trying to burn off that excess fuel you’ve saved up over winter, adding more to the tank is not going to help.  We see it all the time,  someone goes for a morning jog only to crack open the sports drink and effectively replace the calories they just used up!  For the average person who is exercising to get fit and perhaps lose a little weight, water is the best drink and it’s free!

The Dieting Lie
Dieting is often the default fallback for those looking to lose weight.  I suppose it is a reflection of society today that we try to find the easiest way to achieve the most challenging things in our lives in the shortest time possible.  Out of desperation many turn to fad diets as a way to get the pounds off without doing what they know is required.  For a few individuals, eating less is perhaps required, however, for most simply eating healthy is what's needed.  Diets are good for one one thing, selling magazines.  

The Shake Fad
Whilst we are on the topic of Diets, lets touch on the latest quick fix dieting obsession of many, Shakes.  These seem like a simple, tasty and somewhat novel way of shedding the pounds and yes, if you stop eating you will indeed lose weight.  Be warned, when you start eating again those pounds will come back and often in greater numbers.  There is an alternative to the much hyped shake... avoid them!

Exercise machines
It used to be that if you sat up late enough watching TV you would quickly have all kinds of crazy exercise gadgets blasted across your screen.  Today you can find these so called infomercials any time, day or night.  This is evidence of just how successful these on screen sales reps are.  Their job is to sell people something they never actually intended to buy and we fall for it every day.  The trick with these ads is that the supper buff fitness gurus using the equipment appear to be having so much fun in such an effortless way.  Of course when your shiny new machine arrives and you finally get it assembled you realise it’s actually not so effortless after all.  More than likely your miracle machine will be collecting dust before your 3rd easy payment has been deducted from your account. There is a great alternative; every year you pay rates which go toward the best exercise gadget there is, an endless treadmill of footpaths around your very own neighbourhood.  Stopping at a front door near you!

The Biggest lie of all, Body Image
For most people the biggest issue when it comes to weight loss is not the condition of their bodies but rather the state of their minds.  Every minute of every day we are told both directly and indirectly that we don’t look good enough.  We are surrounded by super slim celebrities who are in fact probably less healthy than the average man or woman on the street.  We read magazines that scream “Your Fat, let us help you fix it”.  It is this constant bombardment from all sides that leads many to feel insecure about their body image.  This insecurity can often lead to stress which in turn causes us to put on weight, the cycle goes on.  It is the hardest thing of all but breaking this cycle is key.  If necessary, avoid the magazines, avoid programs that make you feel insecure.  Easier said than done but hey, you're worth it!

So, What do You do?
There are many more things to watch out for in this weight loss obsessed world but the reality is, deep down, you already know that.  If in doubt, there are some great websites out there that will help us lose weight in a healthy way, without having to buy, join, or subscribe to anything.    In reality we all know that there are two things required to lose weight, two things that are really proven.  Eat healthy and exercise; that's it, simple. But I would like to add a third...

Remember who you are and that you are wonderful.