Reverse diet: we analyze the regimen that promises to avoid the rebound effect after losing weight to see if it works

If even Kim Kardashian (or at least her personal trainer) has given her approval to the reverse diet, it will be for a reason. And it is that after making the supreme effort to lose weight, it is time to maintain the good results obtained. And it is not an easy task, because when we are satisfied with the figure that marks the scale we tend to underestimate the power of those few extra calories we start to consume encouraged by the idea that it is not so bad. And yes it is: the rebound effect is almost guaranteed in most diets that make you lose weight quickly and, in fact, in all those that do not suppose a alimentary reeducation. That is why it is important to take good care of yourself after losing weight and have a nutritional plan for the months after that loss. Is the reverse diet from the United States the solution?

What is reverse diet and how does it work

The reverse diet recommended for people who have lost weight following a diet based on calorie restriction (consuming 1200 calories a day maximum) for 12 weeks (restricting calories for more than that time is dangerous). This type of caloric restriction produces almost guaranteed and accelerated weight loss, but it is also one of the ways to lose weight that not only beats our emotions but also causes the yo-yo effect: If you get lost, in record time not only can you gain the lost weight, but you can also add a couple of kilos of tip.

To prevent this from happening, the followers of the reverse diet advocate progressively increasing the daily intake of calories until reaching a normal amount instead of going from one day to the next to eat "normal". Ideally, calorie intake should be increased by a maximum of 100 calories per week (and a minimum of 50) and that the process of increasing calories takes up to 10 weeks!

What do nutrition experts say about the reverse diet?

Well, if we consider Kim Kardashian's coach as an expert in the field, we should not doubt the benefits of this system: reverse diet works and prevents rebound effect. But if we go to more scientific sources, in reality, the thing is not so clear. There are few or no serious studies looking at this gradual addition of calories to the daily intake in people who have followed restrictive diets and lost weight. What is proven is that losing weight by eating few calories has an almost guaranteed rebound effect.


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Investigations of the University of Colorado point out that people who lose weight by following a calorie-restrictive diet (they ate 800 daily) had more difficulties after losing 10 kilos to control values ​​such as the feeling of satiety and appetite when compared to patients who underwent a gastric bypass intervention to lose weight. It seems that by their very nature this type of low calorie regimen makes the desire to eat multiply after weight loss because hormones that control hunger pangs they arrive with more desire to work than ever.

In this context it seems to make sense that we try to control post-diet calorie intake and incorporate them little by little until we reach a normal intake … or not? Well, for nutrition experts, it is not like that. In fact, his recommendation is that except in very specific medical cases we never follow calorie-restrictive diets, so It is not that the reverse diet does not work, it is that we should not even consider starting the initial diet which led us to question whether our altered hormones are going to give us a rebound effect.

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