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 The health fibs women tell themselves

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PostSubject: The health fibs women tell themselves   Thu Oct 07, 2010 2:11 pm

The health fibs women tell themselves!!!!! Wink Wink

We complain when the men in our lives tell us porkies, but the truth is that women quite often lie to themselves more frequently than their other halves - especially where their health and fitness is concerned.

From distinctly un-sweaty sessions spent in the gym and losing weight by skipping meals, to a casual attitude towards the true dangers of smoking and 'glasses' of wine that would leave a horse feeling slightly woozy, there is no end to the fibs we will spout to make us feel better about ourselves. So, how many are you guilty of?

It's 'fat-free' so I'm losing weight!

In the world of diet traps, the so-called 'fat-free' snack is king. Unfortunately, just because the packaging says the biscuit, cake or other tempting treat is low in saturated fat does not mean it won't make you pile on the pounds. Quite the opposite in fact.

Taste has to come from somewhere, and if it's not from fat, then it is more than likely from compensatory sugar, which is just as much of a threat to your waistline.

Always look at the nutrition label on low-fat or fat-free foods to see how much sugar (and, just as important, salt) is in them - it might make you think twice about putting them in your shopping trolley.

I've been to the gym! Only I haven't really...

Spending 45 minutes burning through fat reserves in a spin class counts as going to the gym. A session with a personal trainer that leaves your muscles feeling like they've been injected with lava counts as going to the gym. Working up a sweat lifting weights and working on your abs counts as going to the gym.

Sitting in the jacuzzi and then the steam room, followed by a 30-minute chat in the cafe (slice of cake optional), certainly does not.

It's easy to kid yourself that your very presence at that soulless place to which you give £50 a month constitutes 'going to the gym', but the only person you are fooling is yourself. Give yourself realistic targets and make sure you vary your workouts, or, if the gym itself is the problem, sign up for a marathon or do something outside instead.

I'm not a smoker as I only smoke when I drink

It doesn't matter where you do it. Even in the pub, smoking is still bad for you. Smoking is the biggest single cause of cancer in the world, and according the the NHS around 114,000 people in the UK die from smoking-related illnesses every year.

You might think that a few cigarettes while enjoying a few drinks with friends is unlikely to do much damage, but even a few fags a day can lead to serious health problems such as cancer and high blood pressure. Furthermore, if you go out drinking a few times a week, then you may well be burning your way through more cigarettes than you think - or can remember.

Casual smoking like this can also lead to a full-blown nicotine addiction, and you will find it hard to completely kick the habit later in life. By that time, it could be too late.

I'm exercising tomorrow, so I can stuff myself today

We've all done it - allowed ourselves a burger or slice of chocolate cake because we have an exercise session pencilled in for the next day. Sadly, cancelling out calories in this way isn't good for your waistline. For one thing, what if the gym session doesn't happen?

And don't forget that most of these treats you think will burn off are often packed with fat - and you may not burn off all of it, or the calories, in the gym.

Excess saturated fat and sugar is also bad for your overall health - regardless of how hard you pound the treadmill - and the more you stuff your face before you work up a sweat, the harder you will find it to get, and stay, in shape.

I've only had one (huge) glass of wine

What constitutes a 'glass' of wine? A small glass in the pub (one-and-a-half units of alcohol) is usually 125ml, a larger measure 175ml. So when you serve yourself a glass of vino in a receptacle that looks like it could double as a vase, then it's time to admit that your are overdoing it.

A glass of wine contains around 150 calories - the goblet you drink from can contain many, many more. And isn't it amazing how topping up your glass before it's empty can fool you into thinking you've guzzled far less than you think? Don't do that either.

One for the pot, one for me

Which calories do you count? The ones on your dinner plate in the evening? The sandwich at your desk at lunch? We bet you neglect to include the 'stealth calories' (so-called because they disappear into your mouth faster than you can say "muffin-top") which are hoovered up in between meals or, more often, while you are cooking.

A handful of nuts or some hummus and bread may not seem like much on top of your daily intake, but over the course of weeks and months it can add up to pounds and pounds of extra, unwanted weight.

Carbs are health foods!

There is no reason why carbohydrates (even refined carbs like white pasta, rice and read) can't play a part in a healthy, balanced diet. However, if you do little or no exercise (you should be doing at least 30-minutes five times a week) then you won't be able to burn them off.

Combining carbs with protein right after exercise is a particularly good way to shed fat and promote lean muscle growth. Combining carbs with an afternoon on the sofa, on the other hand, is only good for making you fat.

I'm losing weight by missing meals

If cutting calories is the key to losing weight, then surely skipping meals is a shortcut to shedding pounds? If only it were that easy.

All this does is cause your metabolism to spiral downwards, putting your body on the defensive and convincing it that it needs to store fat rather than burn it off, so you may well end up with more excess weight than you started with.

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