5 weight loss confusions

weight loss confusions

When you start losing weight, you will learn new things. And over time, you will notice that there is conflicting advice. Here are 5 weight loss confusions that you can avoid to stay on the track to reach your goal.

I wrote 2 articles (Part 1 and Part 2) about fitness vocabulary to know the basics of fitness.

Confusion 1 – Do sugar and carbohydrate get fat?

There are two things to influence a lot of people to use a diet: a clear description and a fascinating plot. This combination is a strategy based on the use of emotions by marketers. That’s why people buy a diet low in fat, low in carbohydrates or low in sugar.

There is an example of the combination:

“People say that you are not healthy because you eat a lot of junk food. That’s not true, you’re not inattentive. You are trapped in fraudulent science and processed foods”.

Let’s see if there is a difference between different trend diets:

  • This scientific study is about Ketogenic low-carbohydrate (KLC) and Nonketogenic low-carbohydrate (NLC) diets. The result is that to lose weight, there is no difference between the two.
  • This study focuses on diets containing various amounts of carbohydrates, protein, and fat. The result is that low-calorie diets help to lose weight, no matter the quantity of the three.
  • This study is about the difference between a low-fat diet and a low-carbohydrate diet. The result of this 12-month weight loss diet research shows that there is no difference. Dietary effects on weight loss didn’t include genotype patterns and baseline insulin secretion. Unfortunately, It was not possible to see which of these 2 types of diets was useful for whom.
  • This study shows that there is no reason to exclude added sucrose in weight loss diets.

With these several studies, you can learn some principles:

  • Overeating can make you fat. It’s not a unique food.
  • If you eat more calories than you burn, you will gain weight, even if you ingest healthy food.
  • If you eat fewer calories than you burn, you will lose weight. It doesn’t matter how much sugar or carbohydrates you ingest.

Confusion 2 -Can I burn fat in a specific part of my body?

There is confusion created by magazines or newspapers. You can see training plans that aim to thin the thighs or fat of your arm or other body parts.

The reality is different. Scientific studies show that training a specific muscle boost blood flow and lipolysis. In fact, lipolysis is the process of decomposition of fat cells into energy. The study is here.

Work a muscle burn calories and gain muscle. It helps to burn fat that covers the muscle but not in large quantities. The study is here and here for abs exercise $.

Confusion 3 – What is the best choice to burn fat: lift weight or cardio?

Most of the time, when people want to lose weight, they do cardio like biking, jogging or other.

Cardio is a part of the process, but it is not enough. Study here.

Studies show that a lot of people gain more weight when they start cardio. Study here .

Here the reasons why cardio is not enough to weight loss:

  • It burns only the calories of the last meal – when you do 30 minutes of cardio, your body uses the last calories you eat. To reduce your weight, it is necessary that your body also burns the calories you store. You need to reduce the amount of fat you store in your body.
  • Body adaptation allows you to use fewer calories for exercise – Studies show that the body over time uses less and less energy to do an exercise. The consequence is that you burn fewer calories and stagnate (plateau). Sometimes people do more cardio to get over the plateau. This seems like a good idea, but it causes muscle loss and a decline in metabolism. Here the study .

Scientific studies show that it is a nice method to keep muscle and lose fat. Unfortunately for the majority of people, weightlifting has a bad reputation.

Research from Duke University revealed something interesting. It was with 196 overweight women/men between 18 to 70 years old separated into three groups:

  • Group 1: Three days of one hour of weightlifting training per week
  • Group 2: Three days of cardio per week. 45 minutes at an average level.
  • Group 3: Three days of weightlifting and cardio per week.

Something surprising happened after eight months. Group 2 lost the most weight but also lost the most muscles. Group 1 lost the most fat and gain muscles. This means that the combination of weightlifting and cardio has different effects. This makes you lose less weight because of muscle gain. Also, this makes you lose more fat because of several physiological causes. Here is the study.

Confusion 4 – Does a diet can disturb my metabolism?

There is a term that is often used when people talk about diet, it’s metabolic damage. Metabolic damage means that there is a disorder in diverse physiological structures. The consequence is that your body burns fewer calories than you need in relation to your body weight. It can take weeks or years to fix it.

The confusion comes from stories where someone has failed to lose weight. For example: “He gained weight with a very low-calorie diet and an intense workout program”. Because of these stories, a lot of people believe that a diet can disrupt their bodies.

Take a look at the scientific field. Some studies show that a long period of very low-calorie diet affects metabolism.

Click here for the study .

When you reduce your weight by 10%, your metabolic rate can drop. For example, a diet with few calories, little protein, and no weightlifting program.

These metabolic adjustments can continue after the period of weight loss. This is real for people who use radical diets to lose weight. It is possible to stop these changes by eating more calories, more protein and lifting weights.

Click here for the study.

Confusion 5 – Can a diet put the body into famine?

A lot of people see a diet like deprivation or a famine. They tell a lot of stories such as: “Be careful with your calorie reduction, don’t be too radical. This can slow down your metabolism and make it more difficult to lose weight.

The best way to avoid metabolic damage is to have a slight reduction in calories. When there is a reduction in calories, your body responds by stopping weight loss.

There is a study on human metabolism, click here.

This research began in 1944, at the end of the Second World War. At that time, there were many hungry people in Europe and it was important to help them in the healthiest form. 36 people chose to starve in the same state as the prisoner of war camp.

For six months, the volunteers performed several hours of manual labor and ate about 1,500 calories a day. They walked also 22 miles a week. It was difficult at the end of the experiment because some men had almost starved to death. They only had skin on their bones.

There is a surprise, their metabolism was not devastated. When the volunteers lost 25% of their body weight, their metabolism also lost 20%. In contrast, scientists expected more than a decline of 20 percent after six months.

The second step of this experiment is to help the 36 individuals to regain their normal weight. This recovery plan lasts 12 weeks. The average metabolic rate was 10 percent lower than predicted by scientists.

This research shows that the “famine mode” diet is not true. All the volunteers continued to lose weight until the end. Of course, the speed of losing weight decreased but not stall.

When you see someone eats 1500 calories per day and have a workout program for six months and lose weight. Why are you skeptical about the efficiency of a basic diet?

I hope it helps you to stay on track to have a better body.

Share this article if you think it can help someone you know. Thank you.

-Steph

Steroids

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug

What’s up ? This is THE stephane ANDRE. With my training, I’m interested in biomechanics to avoid injuries. I read « Sport Medicine Media Guide » and I learned some good stuff.

We regularly read in news articles, the use of anabolic steroids or performance enhancing drugs by elite athlete. But you should know that these dangerous drugs are more and more used by children in college, high-school and middle school.

What

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug

Anabolic steroids are synthetic derivatives of testosterone. Testosterone is a male sex hormone. Steroids help to create new proteins to increase the size and strength of muscles. The body is already doing this process naturally but steroids increase the activity of this normal process. Find performance enhancing drugs in communities, gyms or internet is easy.

Steroids are consumed orally or by injection. Anabolic steroids in themselves aren’t effective. However, when they’re used at the same time with a strength training, they increase the strength in an impressive way.

Side effects

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug side effect acne

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug side effect acne

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug side effect acne

Performance enhancing drugs allow an athlete to have bigger and more powerful muscles, but users may have deadly health problems. Performance enhancing drugs have several side effects that continue to work even after you stop using them. Users are also more likely to have risky behaviors such as having unsafe sex or taking illegal drugs.

Symptoms of use of anabolic steroids are :

  • Acne (often severe) visible on the face and back

  • Severe mood change such as extreme aggression or suicidal behavior

  • Premature balding, breast enlargement (gynecomastia), irreversible shrinking of testicles in boys.

  • Deeper voice, shrinking breast and clitoral enlargement in girls

  • Dangerous enlargement of the heart that can increase bad cholesterol and blood pressure.

  • Irreversible liver damage

  • In children, premature closure of the growth plates, stopping normal growth of bones.

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug side effect gynecomastia

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug side effect gynecomastia

sport injury steroids performance enhancing drug side effect gynecomastia

A reason to take anabolic steroids

Anabolic steroids may be advisable for people who have lost testicular function like men with a testicular tumor. They’re also advised in some type of anemia to stimulate the bone morrow.

Prevent

The true is the problems of performance enhancing drugs aren’t solely related to elite athletes. Children are also exposed to this every day. Ask kids what they know about these drugs. Ask them if they know anyone in their school class who uses these drugs. Ask them if they know the dangers of these drugs. If you think that your children or children in your family might be experiencing these drugs, talk to your doctor.

It’s also important to talk to coaches and ask them if leagues or schools require annual physical exams for athletes. A physical examination by a doctor can detect the use of performance enhancing drugs in athletes (doping test). Ask coaches if any of their athletes have experienced performance enhancing drugs.

Stats

As many as four 4 American children and teens are using performance enhancing drugs such as anabolic steroids.

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-Steph

P.S. If you’re in Miami and you like Caribbean food, go to my cousin’s bistro to eat Haitian food, click here .

Articular Cartilage Injuries

articular cartilage injury

What’s up ? This is THE stephane ANDRE. With my training, I’m interessted in biomechanics to avoid injuries. I read « Sport Medicine Media Guide » and I learned some good stuff.

Definition

Articular cartilage is difficult to understand because there are 3 types of cartilages in the body : articular of hyaline cartilage (covers joint surfaces), fibrocartilage (knee meniscus, vertebral disk) and elastic cartilage (outer ear). These cartilage’s types differ in their structure, elasticity and strength.

Articular cartilage is a complex element, it’s a living tissue that is on the joint’s surface. The function is to provide a low friction surface to allow the joint to withstand weight loads through the range of motion needed to perform activity of daily living. To put it simply, articular cartilage is a very thin shock absorber. It’s built in 5 distinct layers and each layer has a structural and biochemical difference.

Injury

articular cartilage injury

Articular cartilage injury may be due to trauma or progressive degeneration (wear and tear). This can be mechanical destruction, a direct blow or other trauma. The healing of articular cartilage cells depends on the severity of the damage and the location of the lesion. Articular cartilage has no direct blood supply so it has very little ability to repair itself. It the lesion penetrates the bone under the cartilage, the bone provides blood in the area which improves the chances of healing.

Mechanical degeneration (wear and tear) of articular cartilage occurs with progressive loss of normal cartilage structure and function. This loss begins with the softening of the cartilage, then progresses to fragmentation. As the loss of articular cartilage lining continue, the underlying bone no longer has any protections against normal wear and tear of daily life and begins to get damaged leading to osteoarthritis.

In many cases, a patient experiences knee swelling and vague pain. At this stage, continuous physical activity isn’t possible. If a loose body is present, words such as « locking » or « catching » might be used to explain the problem. With wear and tear , the patient often experiences stiffness, decreased range of motion, joint pain and/or swelling.

Diagnostic

The physician examines the knee to look for a decrease in range of motion, pain along the joint line, swelling, fluid on the knee, abnormal alignment of the joint’s bones, and ligament or meniscal injury.

Cartilage lesions are difficult to diagnose and it’s possible that the use of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or arthroscopy may be necessary. Plain X- rays don’t usually diagnose articular cartilage problems but they used to rule out other abnormalities.

Treatment

articular cartilage injury treatment

 

Articular cartilage injury that doesn’t penetrate the bone doesn’t repair itself. A lesion that penetrates the bone can heal but the type of cartilage created is structurally unorganized and doesn’t work as well as the original cartilage.

Lesion less than 2 cm have the best prognosis and the best treatment options. These options are arthroscopic surgery using techniques to remove damaged cartilage and increase blood flow from the underlying bone (drilling, pick procedure or microfracture ).

For smaller lesion of articular cartilage surgery is not required.

For larger lesion, it’s necessary to transplant the articular cartilage from another area of the body. Talk to your doctor or specialist to have more information about the decision to have a surgical operation.

For patients with osteoarthritis, non-surgical treatment consists of physical therapy, lifestyle modification (for example reducing activity), bracing, supportive devices, oral and injection drugs (like non-steroidal inflammatory drugs, cartilage protective drugs) and medical management.

Surgical options depend on the severity of osteoarthritis and may provide a reduction in symptoms that are usually short-lived. Total osteoarthritis may relieve the symptom of advanced osteoarthritis but this usually requires a change in the lifestyle and/or level of activity of the patient.

Statistics

Based on published studies, the overall prevalence of articular cartilage injury in the knee is 36% among all athlete and 59% among asymptomatic basketball players and runners.

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-Steph

Acromioclavicular Joint Injury

acromioclavicular joint injury

What’s up ? This is THE stephane ANDRE. With my training, I’m interested in biomechanics to avoid injuries. I read « Sport Medicine Media Guide » and I learned some good stuff.

Acromioclavicular joint is a joint between the clavicle and the scapula. Acromion is a continuation of the scapular spine and hooks over anteriorly. It articulate with the clavicle (collar bone ) to form the acromioclavicular joint.

Problems types

The most common problems are arthritis, fracture and separation. Arthritis is characterized by a loss of joint’s cartilage. Arthritis of acromioclavicular joint is common with weight lifter, especially with bench press and a little less with shoulder press. When there is a problem with the rotator cuff, it’s possible that there is also acromioclavicular joint’s arthritis.

Acromioclavicular separation

acromioclavicular joint injury type grade

When there is an acromioclavicular joint separation, it means that the ligament that connects the acromion and clavicle is damaged and that the 2 structures don’t align properly. Separation’s state can be weak or severe, that is why there is a system of « grade » according to which ligament is torn and the severity of the tear.

Grade I Injury – This is the weakest damage and the acromioclavicular joint is still aligned.

Grade II Injury – This is an average damage. Ligaments are only stretched but not fully torn. In case of stress (physical effort), the acromioclavicular joint becomes painful and unstable.

Grade III Inury – This is a serious damage. Ligaments are completely torn and the collar bone is no longer attached to the scapula, which creates a visible deformity.

Treatment of acromioclavicular joint arthritis

If the rest, ice, medications and change of the training program (changing the exercises) don’t work, the next step is a shot of cortisone. A shot of cortisone in the joint may have calmed the pain and may be permanently swollen. As each individual is unique, the effects may vary and it’s possible that it doesn’t swell permanently.

If non-surgical methods fail, it’s possible to perform a surgical operation. The pain is localized at the bones end that make contact with each other and the goal of the operation is to remove some of the end of the clavicle. This ambulatory surgery can be done with a small incision of 1 inch (2.5 cm) long or with the arthroscopy technique with 2-3 incisions. The results and recovery of these 2 surgical techniques are about the same. Most patients have a full movement by 6 weeks and can return to do sport by 12 weeks.

Treatment for acromioclavicular separation

Separation can create very painful injuries, so the first thing to do is to decrease the pain. Hold the arm in a sling, put ice and pack the shoulder for 20-30 minutes every 2 hours as needed. Acetaminophen and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications can also help calm the pain.

When the pain begins to subside, it’s important to move the fingers, wrists and elbow (and eventually the shoulders) in order to avoid having stiff or « frozen » shoulder. The length of time needed to regain complete movement and function depends on the severity or injury’s grade.

Recovery from Grade I acromioclavicular separation usually takes 10-14 days while Grade III takes 6-8 weeks.

When surgery

Grade I and II separations require very rarely surgery. With a Grade III injury, after surgery, it’s possible to have full body physical activity with some restrictions.

Statistics

  • More males than females suffer acromioclavicular joint injuries

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-Steph

Exercise To Avoid Overhead Shoulder Press Pain

shoulder pain

What’s up ? This is THE stephane ANDRE. I watched an Athlean-X’s video  and I learned some good stuff.

I have a little pain when I do dumbbell press  or overhead shoulder press, maybe you have that pain too ? As I want to avoid having surgery like the majority of professional athletes, I tried to find out if I could find an alternative exercise to work the same muscles without pain.

This shoulder pain during this exercise is a real problem, because it’s a movement that is so advised to do to develop shoulders that the majority of people continue to do despite the pain. The longer a person continues to do this exercise with the pain and the more the person, several years later, will need to do a surgery to the damaged shoulder. It’s sad because people keep doing this exercise because they don’t know (like me at the beginning) that there are alternative exercises.

Pain

For me, I felt the pain at the starting position, it means with a dumbbell in each hand, dumbbells at the level of my ears or a little above my shoulders and my elbow at the outside. It was impossible for me to keep this position for more than 5 seconds and after a few reps, I felt less pain. A few months later, I changed the starting position. I started with my arms outstretched but the pain was still there. The feeling of pain is really bizarre because sometimes, I felt that my shoulders could be dislocated with heavyweight.

Solution

barbell corner press

The idea is to do this exercise with the elbows forward because the pain is due to instability of the rotator cuff. In fact, this pain appears on the weakest shoulder.

This exercise has no official name and has a lot of variation but the best known name is barbell corner press. You need to use a barbell and put it in a corner of the gym. If you do this at home, I advise you to put a blanket in the corner of the wall to not damage the wall. Put a plate of 10kg (22lbs) or 20kg (45lbs) on the opposite side :

  • Lift the barbell with your 2 hands with a squat position to protect your back. Stand up with your torso leaning forward, your back straight, one leg forward and your hands almost on your torso with your elbows forward.

  • Press straight up overhead and exhale

  • Back to the start position and inhale

You can also do this exercise with one hand. Barbell corner press is an alternative exercise to dumbbell press or overhead shoulder press to continue developing your shoulders without pain and without sacrificing your shoulders.

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-Steph

Good Position For Abs

Action on lumbar curvature of the psoas muscle

Psoas muscles have other functions than to be powerful flexors of hip. They put the lumbar spine in lordosis, which increases the arch.

I read a Frederic Delavier’s book « Strength Training Anatomy » and I learned good stuff.

Abs exercises (especially for rectus abdominis) must work with the round back (round your spine). It’s the opposite of other exercises.

For vertebral coil exercises, the mechanicals stresses on vertebral joints aren’t the same as for exercises such as squat, deadlift and other exercises with weight. For example, for squat, the spine isn’t arched at the lumbar level. The vertical pressure with the spine’s rounding pushes the nucleus pulposus intervertebral disc backwards, which can compress nerve elements and create sciatic herniated disc.

For abs exercises, it’s the opposite. If during the abs execution you forget to round your back with an intense contraction of abs and obliques, the powerful flexors of hips (psoas major) will increase the lumbar arch. This will move the intervertebral discs forward as they aren’t stabilized by the vertical pressure. Then an excess of pressure at the back of the lumbar vertebral joints can create lumbago or more serious, joints damage by compression and shear.

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-Steph

Proteins And Kideys

protein

I watched a Jamcore DZ’s video  and I learned a lot of stuff.

When I started to train in a gym. I often asked myself this question : « How much protein do I have to eat at each meal ? ». I asked this question to people in the gym and I had several different answers. For example, someone told me that if I ate too much protein, it could destroy my kidneys or that whey (shaker) was better protein than protein from food (chicken, beef, eggs, etc).

I think you also ask yourself this type of questions so I will help you understand better.

Firstly, everyone knows that protein is very used in fitness and bodybuilding. You can find protein in food or as a dietary supplement such as whey, casein and amino acids. Protein are composed of amino acids.

kidney

1) How much daily protein is recommended for someone who doesn’t do fitness  ?

It’s 0.8 grams (gr) of protein per kilogram (kg) of body weight or 0.36 grams per pound. For this article, I will use the unit of mesure kilograms (kg).

I will take the example of Jamo who is a former professional bodybuilder who continues to train. Jamo weighs 95kg. 95kg at 0.8gr per kilo of bodyweight gives as a result that Jamo eats 76gr of protein per meal. Jamo want to keep his bodybuilder body without steroids. For this, he must eat several times a day and that makes a total of 360gr per day.

2) With sport, do these recommendations change ?

Yes, because a sedentary person will use more of his/her body, which means that this person will use more his/her muscles. The meals content changes with the sport and the type of sport. If we compare a person who is doing fitness and a person doing marathons, we see that the meals are different.

A person doing marathons needs to eat more carbohydrates than protein to have endurance. A person who does fitness/bodybuilding need to eat more protein than carbohydrates for muscles rebuilding and muscle growth.

3) Depending on the intensity, do these recommendations change ?

Depending on the intensity, the answer is yes and no. It also depends on the muscle mass. When a person is doing a really intensive workout, the most important marcro is carbohydrate.

An increase of protein is necessary when a person decreases carbohydrates to be shredded. Increase protein helps maintain muscle mass.

4) With age, these recommendations change ?

change

With the latest scientific studies, we learned that proteins need to be increased with age. When a person start to become old, that person loses muscle mass naturally (and it’s normal). It’s for this reason that it’s important to play sport to maintain muscle mass. And to help to maintain this muscle mass, it’s necessary to increase protein.

This a scientific study about it, click here

5) Consume a large amount of protein destroys kidneys ?

The answer is yes and no. In a case where a person has pre-existing kidney problems before playing sport, it’s important to see a nephrologist (kidney specialist) or a doctor. For people who have healthy kidneys, proteins don’t destoy the kidneys. Kidneys are the most detoxifiying organs of the human body and we (human being) have been created to eat meat. The human being is made to eat a lot of meat. Until now, no study has shown that the protein destory kidneys, except for people with pre-exiting kidney problems.

Here is a scientific study on the effects of high protein intake on the kidneys, click here . This study shows that is a myth and a lie.

6) Assimilation and MPS (mass protein synthesis)

Assimilation is when you eat protein. A part of the protein you eat will be assimilated for protein synthesis. Everything else, your body will assimilate because your body is made of 80% amino acids, so these proteins will be used for your skin, your hair, your eyes, your organs. Absolutely all the protein that you eat will be absorbed by your body, nothing is thrown away. There is no protein in you pee.

The goal of protein synthesis is to repair or eliminate damaged proteins and to build new proteins that are copies of the original. New proteins are stronger, denser and more resistant to stress. Muscle Protein Synthesis (MPS) is the reconstruction of muscle caused by stress placed on the body. This can be an injury (muscle tear) or because you intentionally damage a muscle (lifting weights creating micro tears in muscles). MPS process activated right after micro tears and can last up to 48 hours on a damaged site before being repaired.

A part of protein you eat is used for protein synthesis, which will create the state of hypertrophy with hormones. Protein synthesis doesn’t buid muscle, it’s muscle protein synthesis (MPS).

I just read again my text and I see that it’s a bit difficult to understand (for me too ?!?). To make it simpler, protein synthesis repairs your skin, your hair, your eyes, your organs and create the state of hypertrophy. Muscle protein synthesis repair only your muscles.

Here is a scientific study on nutrition and muscle protein synthesis, click here .

7) Liquid and solid protein

Liquid proteins are whey and casein (shaker). Solid proteins are chicken, beef eggs, etc. The diffrence is that the body assimilates liquid proteins faster than solid proteins. The problem is that the quality of liquid proteins is 75% bad on the market, so it’s up to you to study ingredients (as for food in supermarkets) to find the best quality possible. I wrote an article on this subject, click here

8) Number of grams of protein per meal

  • For men, it’s about 30-35gr of protein per meal. For women, it’s about 20-25gr of protein per meal.
  • For older men, it’s about 35-40gr per meal. For older women, it’s about 25-30gr per meal.

Here is an interesting study for women. Eating a large amount of protein has harmful effects on the bones. Click here .

Share this article if you think it can help someone you know. Thank you.

-Steph