Believe it or not, you do not lose weight when you're hitting the treadmill with a vengeance. Sure, that little digital screen keeps you updated with the number of calories you've been spending, but the actual weight loss and fat burning happens at a completely different time, according to celebrity nutritionist and wellness expert Luke Coutinho. When you're sleeping, to be precise.
"Most people don't even sleep enough. All of the weight loss happens while you sleep, the 500 calories you see on the cycle is not you burning wight at that time, it's just an algorithm designed to predict what's going to happen," Coutinho revealed in our Facebook Live chat. "You have to sleep well, you have to maintain your stress levels because stress has a direct impact on your weight. The higher your cortisol — which is a stress hormone — your thyroxine falls. When your thyroxine falls, the body gets the signal to slow down, which means slow down your metabolism."
Another key factor the wellness expert identified in the battle against unhealthy fat — especially for those who've hit a plateau in their weight loss — is overtraining.
"Most Indian women and men overtrain. This is traditional to the Indian mindset, we believe that we have to punish the human body with exercise to burn off fat, so if we've had a heavy weekend, we go to the gym and think 'the more I work out, the more fat I burn'."
This negatively affects the hormonal balance in the body, Coutinho advises, resulting in conditions like PCOD. "When women overtrain, they hit a plateau. So what I advice my clients is for a week, stop training. Only walk and do yoga. Recovery is the most important thing for the human body."