Chances are, you might be someone that, at one point or another, considered losing weight. What if I told you that losing weight quickly is not as beneficial to your health and well-being as you might think...
In this blog, I discuss the pros and cons of losing weight fast versus losing weight slow, and which is right for you.
Let’s pretend we have 2 individuals, someone who loses 20 pounds in a month, and someone who loses 20 pounds over the course of 3 months.
Before I get into specific details, I want to reiterate that everyone is different, and the effects of losing weight fast or slow vary from person to person.
Pros of losing weight fast:
- Gives You Results Fast.
Perhaps the biggest factor when it comes to losing weight is time, and quite frankly, most people do not want to put in the extended amount of time necessary to lose weight at a slower pace. I do not recommend crash dieting, but for those out there that want results super quickly, it is an option.
- Great For Upcoming Special Events.
Usually, people want to get in shape right before a big event, like a wedding, or going on a vacation. Losing weight very quickly can help someone fit into a smaller pant or dress size, for example. Oftentimes, many actors and actresses have to lose weight quickly in order to get ready for a role in a short amount of time.
CONS OF LOSING WEIGHT FAST:
Most importantly, this is not sustainable. Losing 20 pounds in a short period of time is effective because it’s such a short-term solution. However, it is simply just not sustainable.
Losing fat is a very unnatural thing to do as it goes against your body's natural survival instincts. Your body will eventually fight back if you keep this up for too long.
- Nutrient Deficiencies.
Because rapid weight loss results in drastic calorie reductions, the likelihood of developing vitamin and mineral deficiencies becomes much greater, especially if the wrong foods are being consumed.
- No Energy.
This will usually occur after the first couple weeks, and can cause people to feel extremely lethargic and tired, with a complete lack of motivation to do much of anything.
To make things worse, this can also dissuade someone from continuing their weight loss efforts simply because they feel like crap.
- Loss of Lean Body Mass.
In most cases, not 100% of weight lost is all from fat. Some comes from water weight, and a small portion of it can come from muscle tissue. What happens is that the body will actually break down the proteins that make up muscle tissue and use it for fuel. But no worries, you’re not going to “lose your gains."
This is a greater threat for those who have diabetes. Ketoacidosis is a condition when the body produces high amounts of ketone bodies formed from the breakdown of fatty acids and deamination of amino acids.
Losing weight quickly in no way means that you are going to suffer from ketoacidosis, but I wanted to tell you so you're more aware. Ultimately, it comes down to the individual person’s genes and dietary habits.
- You Might Gain the Weight All Back.
The principles of maintaining a healthy weight, and losing weight for that matter, take time to learn, practice, and adopt into a person’s lifestyle.
Some people might go back to their old eating habits, and get surprised when they eventually gain all the weight back. Maintaining a healthy body comes down to your lifestyle habits.
Pros of losing weight slowly:
- Sustained Energy.
Because your body is not in “starvation mode,” your hormones levels are much more stable. This will allow you to continue performing daily activities at a higher level, which means NOT losing strength in the gym. With reduced fatigue, you will be able to do the necessary training to maintain optimal health.
- Practical for Lifestyle.
Who wants to be hungry all the time? No one.
Taking things slow is far more practical for the busy lifestyles of today’s society. By losing weight slower, you're better able to maintain a sustainable rate of loss - over the long-term. This means that your chances of keeping the weight off are much greater.
- Positive Attitude.
Because you are not going to feel like crap, you will have a much happier attitude towards your fat loss efforts. Maintaining a positive outlook throughout the journey is a surefire way to continue success.
- Prevents Loose Skin.
Losing weight slowly allows the body’s skin to adjust by contracting to fit your smaller body. This will help prevent loose, saggy, and wrinkled skin.
Cons of Losing Weight Slowly
The only real disadvantage of slow weight loss is the exact opposite of losing weight fast...
- The Length of Time.
Truth is, people want fast results. The greatest things in life worth having come with time, dedication, and effort. The day-to-day differences might seem small, but week- to-week, month-to-month, the differences add up over time, and boost your motivation to keep moving forward.
So now you might be wondering: which is better, losing weight fast or slow?... And maybe you might have already guessed my answer.
In my opinion, losing weight at a slow pace is much safer, practical, and yields the best results for the reasons I have stated in this article. If you decide to lose a lot of weight in a short period of time, make sure you do so under the supervision of your doctor.
If you found these tips helpful, make sure to check out a calculated and precise approach to your nutritional goals. Check out a custom meal plan!