Body Composition Explained

Lose 30 pounds in 30 days! "Lose 30 pounds in 30 days!" We've all seen advertisements that make this and similar claims. Even if you were to lose those 30 pounds in 30 days, it's important to ask the question, "30 pounds of what?"

You may be asking yourself, "What difference does it make, if I weigh 30 pounds less, I'm going to look better, feel better, be better - right?" Well, maybe, but for how long? If most of the weight lost is water then those pounds come back very quickly. But what is even worse is when some of your muscle is lost as part of those 30 pounds.

The muscles in your body are the largest consumers of calories you have; think of them as furnaces that are constantly burning the calories you eat. If you decrease the amount of muscle in your body, you decrease your ability to burn calories. When you resume your normal eating habits your body is even less able to consume the calories eaten, and as a result the weight returns and you end up weighing even more than before. Every time you go on a diet or use a "weight-loss" product that decreases muscle, you end up losing some of your ability to burn calories.

Conversely, if you increase the muscles in your body, your ability to burn calories improves. In every activity you engage in - work, play, even sleeping - you would burn a greater number of calories. If you then pair this increased ability to burn calories with even a small decrease in calorie intake, it's easy to see how these two behavior actions work together to produce long-lasting results.