Communicating With Employees About Losing Weight

by Frank Roche on February 21, 2013

in Wellness

TL;DR: You’ll never run off your wheat belly. What you eat trumps a track meet.

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Get this: 3,500 calories equals one pound. That’s physics.

You want to lose a pound? Burn 3,500 more calories than you take in.

Easy-peasy, right? All you have to do is go out there and run some and walk some and voila! Fat be gone!

Not so easy, compadre.

You can run your ass off and still not run your ass off.

Know how many calories you can burn by running for an hour? (And c’mon, let’s be honest, can you really run for an hour? Or even five minutes?) It’s around 600 or 700 calories depending on your weight and how fast you run.

Know how many calories you can stuff in your face in a day? The average American consumes 3,754 calories.

The good news is your body burns some calories just for having the motor running. That’s your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR). The bad news is for most people their BMR is somewhere south of 2,000 calories. Remember that 3,754 calorie average? That means 1,700 calories — half a pound — needs to be made up for in exercise and movement.

Now the straight talk: You need to get moving. You bet. (Check out Hotseat.) But the real truth is it’ll never work unless you take in significantly fewer calories.

Want to have your eyes opened? Read Wheat Belly by William Davis, MD. (Here’s the straight-straight talk: I think if a company really wanted to help their people to wellness, they’d engage their employees in these kinds of scientific discussions about what’s gone haywire since 1985 in the U.S. food line.) Here’s a couple FAQs from the book:

Is wheat really that bad? I thought that whole grains were good for you?
First of all, it ain’t wheat. It’s the product of 40 years of genetics research aimed at increasing yield-per-acre. The result is a genetically-unique plant that stands 2 feet tall, not the 4 1/2-foot tall “amber waves of grain” we all remember. The genetic distance modern wheat has drifted exceeds the difference between chimpanzees and humans. If you caught your son dating a chimpanzee, could you tell the difference? Of course you can! What a difference 1% can make. But that’s more than modern wheat is removed from its ancestors.

Why do you make the claim that removing all wheat from the diet results in weight loss?
Because I’ve seen it happen–over and over and over again. It’s lost from the deep visceral fat that resides within the abdomen, what can be represented on the surface as “love handles,” “muffin top,” or a darned good imitation of a near-term baby, what I call a “wheat belly.”

Typically, people who say goodbye to wheat lose a pound a day for the first 10 days. Weight loss then slows to yield 25-30 pounds over the subsequent 3-6 months (differing depending on body size, quality of diet at the start, male vs. female, etc.). When you remove wheat from the diet, you’ve removed a food that leads to fat deposition in the abdomen. Factor in that the gliadin protein unique to wheat that is degraded to a morphine-like compound that stimulates appetite is now gone and appetite diminishes. The average daily calorie intake drops 400 calories per day–with less hunger, less cravings and food is more satisfying. This all occurs without imposing calorie limits, cutting fat grams, or limiting portion size. It all happens just by eliminating this thing called wheat.

Activity (1-hour duration) Weight of person and calories burned
160 lbs 200 lbs 240 lbs
Aerobics, high impact 533 664 796
Aerobics, low impact 365 455 545
Aerobics, water 402 501 600
Backpacking 511 637 763
Basketball game 584 728 872
Bicycling, < 10 mph 292 364 436
Bowling 219 273 327
Canoeing 256 319 382
Dancing, ballroom 219 273 327
Football, touch or flag 584 728 872
Golfing, carrying clubs 314 391 469
Hiking 438 546 654
Ice skating 511 637 763
Racquetball 511 637 763
Resistance (weights) 365 455 545
Rollerblading 548 683 818
Rope jumping 861 1,074 1,286
Rowing, stationary 438 546 654
Running, 5 mph 606 755 905
Running, 8 mph 861 1,074 1,286
Skiing, cross-country 496 619 741
Skiing, downhill 314 391 469
Skiing, water 438 546 654
Softball or baseball 365 455 545
Stair treadmill 657 819 981
Swimming, laps 423 528 632
Tae kwon do 752 937 1,123
Tai chi 219 273 327
Tennis, singles 584 728 872
Volleyball 292 364 436
Walking, 2 mph 204 255 305
Walking, 3.5 mph 314 391 469

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