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Friday, February 17, 2012

What Is Starvation Mode?

Many people come to me in a state of complete bafflement and confusion with questions about starvation mode. They've read something here or there, been told something by their local neighbourhood meatball in the gym, or heard about it on an infomercial. With all the different opinions and different viewpoints on the issue, it can be extremely difficult to differentiate between what's fact and what's fiction. The internet isn't much help either, as there are so many uneducated people who are all too willing to tell you their usually uneducated opinion. I'm going to try to clarify what's what in this article when it comes to starvation mode, leaving absolutely no room for error.

There are two sides to the starvation mode battle. The first claims that if you don't eat enough food everyday, your body will respond by rapidly slowing down its fat burning metabolism. They claim that your body becomes extremely efficient in the absence of calories, and actually reduces the number of calories your body needs to operate normally. Why would it do this? Quite simply, because it thinks that there is a famine going on. It has no idea that there is probably a fast food joint down the road from you. It is preparing itself for starvation, thus the name.

The flip side of the coin is, people die everyday from starvation. It's a horrible, but truthful reality. People who don't believe in the starvation mode claim that you only have to turn on your television and look at the news for proof. After all, how could starvation mode exist if children are dying every day from lack of food? This truly, at least partially, the starvation mode claim cannot be completely true.

So where do the truth lie? As with many things in life, the truth lies somewhere in the middle. It is true that people die from starvation, so your body cannot indefinitely maintain a state where it doesn't use many calories. It's also true that not eating does have an effect your body, and metabolism slow. In reality though, your metabolism only slows a slight amount. It is true that your metabolism will rev less slowly if you don't feed it with a constant flow of nutrition, but it's very subtle. It's certainly not enough to stop starvation, and it's also not enough to stop significant weight loss.

So, is starvation mode a myth? Sort of. Starvation mode exists, it just doesn't live up to its reputation of bringing fat loss to a halt. The most efficient way to lose weight? Avoid starvation mode, it won't hurt you, and it might give you that extra 5% that other people don't have. Try to eat something small every three hours, like a protein bar or a banana. These are perfect to fill in the void between meals and keep your body out of starvation mode.

Josh Vales has been a trainer and fitness fanatic for over 10 years and wants to help people reach their fat loss and muscle building goals. Read more banana facts and download a FREE copy of Josh's Biggest Fitness Lies report to avoid the 10 most common fitness mistakes.

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