One of the dumbest things I have probably ever heard in relation to body composition goals is that ‘’a calorie deficit will make you lose fat, regardless’ – I absolutely, wholeheartedly, strongly disagree. Being in a calorie deficit will lead to weight loss until homeostasis kicks in, however weight loss and body recomposition are two VERY different goals. Anybody who tells you that being in a calorie deficit alone, without the consideration of macronutrients and what type of macronutrients you are ingesting (hormone control, anyone?) will get you lean is a fool. Take an extreme case of a person who suffers with anorexia, their body fat levels are generally not that low – yet their body WEIGHT is.
If I am yet to convince you, here are a few points I would encourage you to consider.
There is a massive misconception that everybody who is not in shape over eat and live on fast food, which is often not the case. Yes, most people have vices and will eat foods they shouldn’t but they will also often under eat and then over eat to compensate. Take a look at a typical person’s diet below before they become educated on proper eating protocol.
Breakfast – low calorie breakfast cereal, skimmed milk, low fat yogurt
Snack (sometimes) – low calorie cereal bar, chocolate bar, crisps, fruit (1 food)
Lunch – brown sandwiches, ham, salad
Evening meal – lasagne
Drinks – 4 cups of tea, 2 cups of coffee containing skimmed milk, 2 glasses of fruit juice
This is a pretty awful diet and will ultimately lead to a lapse in health of the individual one day, or at least increase the chances shall we say. However if you look at the calorie content alone it isn’t massive, it is in the region of 1,500 calories. Yes, there will be fluctuations where the person will have a takeaway, dessert or some birthday cake but it serves well as an example. I guarantee you this person will not be heading towards anywhere near 10% body fat even with a comprehensive workout programme unless they are a genetic freak (they exist, but they are very rare).
However, there are people who will claim because they are in a calorie deficit their body fat will reduce – I don’t agree. This diet creates a riddle of complications in regards to hormone balances and it is your hormones which control your body composition, ultimately. If in contrast you took this person and changed their diet so they were eating better quality carbohydrates (low GI), limit fructose, and increase their healthy fats and protein sources I will guarantee a positive change in body composition. This is even before fine tuning exact ratios; I am just talking general changes.
Calories are calories, I don’t think so! Macronutrients are macronutrients (carbohydrates are carbohydrates for example) – again, no I don’t think so!!