Exercise and Diet Changes: You Need Both to Lose Weight

Exercise and Diet Changes: You Need Both to Lose Weight

Have you ever wondered if you can lose weight by making changes to your diet alone or simply taking a long walk every day? 

You can if you’re causing a caloric deficit either through exercise or a healthy diet. However, it’s far healthier and more effective to incorporate both strategies into your regimen. 

Below, we asked our experts at Bethel Family Medicine to explain why combining exercising with dieting is the most effective weight loss strategy. 

Exercising for weight loss 

If you opt only to exercise for weight loss but don’t make any changes to your diet, you may not burn enough calories to achieve a deficit. If you don’t achieve a calorie deficit, you won’t lose weight.

For example, three chocolate chip cookies contain about 238 calories. To burn this amount of calories, you would need at least half an hour of jogging. 

Calories can add up very quickly, especially when the food you’re eating is high in sugar and unhealthy fats.

However, when combined with a healthy diet, exercise can help in a number of ways. This includes improving muscle tone and increasing insulin sensitivity, which can speed up your weight loss even further. 

Dieting for weight loss 

Cutting calories from your diet is the easiest way to lose weight. For example, replacing a slice of chocolate cake with a banana can decrease your calorie intake by 250 calories. However, diet isn’t only about calories in and calories out.

A diet high in carbohydrates may make it more difficult to lose weight even at a calorie deficit. The body breaks carbohydrates down into sugars, and the hormone responsible for regulating blood sugar levels (insulin) is also responsible for fat storage.

On the flip side, increasing protein may be beneficial for weight loss, both because it increases muscle mass and because it doesn’t stimulate the production of insulin as much as carbohydrates. 

However, to fully enjoy the benefits of a high protein diet, you’ll need to incorporate exercise into your regimen, as your muscles need to be stimulated to increase in mass. 

Combining dieting and exercise for best results

Our team at Bethel Family Medicine understands why you may be struggling to both switch to a healthy diet and incorporate exercise into your daily routine. 

However, under the right guidance, you can find a type of exercise that’s suitable for your fitness level and a meal plan that works for your lifestyle and tastes. Contact us to schedule an appointment. You’ll get expert guidance from our weight loss experts on your journey to becoming fitter and healthier. 

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