Diet Information
Effects of Dieting on Weight Gain, Weight Cycling and Yo-Yo Diets

Does Dieting Cause Weight Gain

Diet Information - Dieting Tips

Does Dieting Lead To Weight Gain?

Yes. Under certain circumstances, repetitive dieting may lead to weight gain.

We Don't Just Lose Fat

Typically, when we reduce energy-intake (by following a calorie-controlled diet) and increase energy expenditure (by taking extra exercise), we create a calorie-deficit and thus lose weight. This weight loss typically comprises fat, but includes a small proportion of muscle tissue as well.

Some Dieting Methods Lead to Extra Muscle Loss

Some types of diets can increase loss of muscle, as opposed to fat. For example, if we try to reduce weight too fast (by following a very-low-energy diet), our brain may think that there is a food shortage, and try to conserve calories. One method it uses to achieve this calorie-conservation, is to burn muscle instead of fat. Why? Because, compared to fat, muscle requires fewer calories to maintain.

Losing Muscle Tissue Lowers Metabolic Rate

Metabolic rate is the speed at which we use calories to fuel resting body functions, such as temperature maintenance, heart-beat, circulation, breathing and the millions of other biochemical functions which occur around the clock. Now, as stated above, our body needs more calories to maintain muscle tissue than fat tissue, so the more muscule we have, the more calories we burn, and therefore the higher our metabolic rate.

Effects of Repetitive Low Calorie Dieting on Metabolic Rate

As stated above, if we lose weight, we always lose a little muscle tissue. And if we follow very-low-calorie diets, this loss of muscle increases. In either case, our metabolic rate tends to fall, making it easier to gain weight in future because we now need fewer calories. Now when we stop dieting and revert to a higher calorie-intake, it's common to regain weight. This weight gain is exclusively fat. Thus as you can see, while dieting typically leads to a loss of fat AND muscle, weight regain is just fat. Therefore, if we engage in yo-yo dieting (weight cycling), gradually our body fat percentage gets bigger, our muscle percentage gets smaller, and our metabolic rate gets lower and lower. This means our calorie-needs get smaller and smaller. So each time we quit dieting and return to eating (say) our normal 2000 calories, we are likely to gain weight.

How to Prevent Weight Gain After Dieting

Here is some general advice to avoid the risk of gaining weight after dieting.

  • When dieting, choose a sensible diet containing 1000+ calories.
  • Eat regularly throughout the day - at least every 4 hours.
  • Aim to lose no more than 1-2 pounds per week.
  • Always combine your diet plan with regular exercise (inc. strength-training workouts) to boost muscle mass.


BEST DIET | Free Diet Plan | Diet Program to Lose Weight | How to Lose Weight | Calorie Needs | Weight Loss Advice | Free Diets - Special Conditions | Diet Questions | Diet Advice For Men | Best Online Diet Plan | Best Weight Loss Diet Plan | How to Lose Weight Fast | Do Diet Programs Work | Types of Weight Loss Programs | Diet Tips | Best Forum For Diet Support | New Diets and Dieting Articles | Obesity Advice | Weight Chart | Help to Lose Weight | Diet Pills Advice | Side Effects | Xenical Fat Blockers | Meridia Diet Pills | Do Weight Loss Pills Work | Laxatives to Lose Weight | Weight Management Guidelines | Surgery for Weight Loss | Health Risks | Gastric Bypass Diet | Eating Disorders | How to Stop Bingeing | Weight Loss & Exercise | Weight Loss After Pregnancy | Diet Recipes | Diet Newletter | Weight Loss Resources | Diet & Weight Loss Links


Reviews of Diets | Atkins Diet | Cabbage Soup Diet | Cider Vinegar Diet | Fad Diets | Food Combining | Grapefruit Diet | High Fiber Diets | Jenny Craig Diet | Low Calorie Diets | Low Fat Diets | Low GI Diet | Metabolic Typing Diet | Peanut Butter Diet | Scarsdale Diet | South Beach Diet | Sugar Busters | Three Hour Diet | Weight Watchers Diet | Zone Diet | Weight Loss Diet Reviews


Diets for ADD/ADHD | Alcohol & Dietary Health | Diet For Alcoholics | Arthritis Diet | Blood Pressure Diet | Bodybuilding Diet | BRAT Diet | Cancer Diet | Candida Diet | Cholesterol Lowering Diet | Constipation Diet | Crohn's Disease | DASH Diet | Detox Diet | Diabetic Diet Tips | Gluten Free Diet | Healthy Heart Diet | High Protein Diets | Hyperactivity Diet | Indian Diet | Irritable Bowel Diet | Lactose Intolerance | Lactose-Free Non-Dairy Calcium | Low Sodium Diet | Medical Diet | Mediterranean Diet | Menopause Diet | Migraine Dietary Advice | PMS Diet | Renal Diet | Smokers Diet | Vegetarian


Latest Dietary Guidelines | Healthy Diet | Diet For Children | Diet For Teens | Diet Nutrition Advice | Fat in Food | Best Fats | How Much Fat Needed | Guide to Glycemic Index | Guide to Glycemic Load | GI Per Food Serving | GI Values For Food Groups | Carbs & Glycemic Index | Low Carb Diets | Daily Carb Needs | How Much Fiber Needed | Folate Intake RDA | Calcium Intake RDA | Protein Intake RDA | Sugar Intake | Food Calorie Charts provides general information on healthy eating, special diets and weight loss programs, diet nutrition, diet pills and weight loss surgery. However no advice given here is intended as a substitute for professional medical advice. For the sake of your health, always consult your doctor before making any significant dietary, nutritional or lifestyle changes. Copyright 2001-2018 Diet Information. All rights reserved.