What if you lose 10 pounds

What Really Happens When You Lose 10 Pounds

There are tons of benefits to shedding those last 10 pounds - from a healthier heart to feeling better in a bikini! But have you ever wondered what exactly happens to your body when you drop the weight? ...

There are tons of benefits to shedding those last 10 pounds - from a healthier heart to feeling better in a bikini! But have you ever wondered what exactly happens to your body when you drop the weight?

According to Vicki March, MD, the medical director of the Lifestyle Program at the Weight Management Center at Magee-Womens Hospital, of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, exactly what happens internally when you lose 10 pounds depends on a few key factors: How ? Obesity to start with, how quickly you lost the weight and what type of diet you drained.

"Most of your body is made up of water and of course fat and muscle," explains Dr. March. If you go on a diet that either limits your caloric intake too much or excludes an entire category of food, like a zero-carb diet, it's possible to see the scale drop by five to 10 pounds in a week, but Dr. March says this isn't usually real fat loss; It's water. It's much healthier, she says, to "reasonably" cut calories while staying moderately active, which allows for slower, more consistent weight loss.

"If you've lost some water, the next thing you will lose is either fat or muscle," says Dr. March. Ideally, she says, all you want to do is lose fat, not muscle. Not only do muscles lose your metabolism because muscles burn more calories than fat, but you become vulnerable to bone loss and your immune capacity is decreased, she says.

"It's even better to increase muscle mass and lose fat at the same time," says Dr. March. You can only achieve this with a very balanced diet that contains sufficient protein (the muscle building block) and does not lose too much weight too quickly (as too few calories would), but also by incorporating resistance training into your training plan. "If you don't exercise, you start digging into that muscle mass, and that's not good," says Dr. March.

Let's say you lose weight in a healthy way, with a balanced diet and plenty of exercise after losing some water, says Dr. March, your fat cells will actually start to shrink! But you don't actually lose the actual fat cells: "Research seems to indicate that we get most of our fat cells in adolescence," explains Dr. March. "So when you lose weight, the fat cells get smaller, each cell holds less fat, and as you gain weight, they get bigger."

Most women, says Dr. March, tend to have most of their weight in the lower part of their body so you will likely lose fat first. Unlike muscle loss, fat loss doesn't affect your metabolism, but, says Dr. March, you need to be more careful about what you eat even after you've lost the weight. "We don't know exactly why, but when you lose weight, the various hormones that control your hunger and desire to eat seem to work harder and get you to your own set point."

In other words, Dr. March says if you want to maintain your new weight of, say, 140 pounds, you will likely need to eat fewer calories than someone who is already 140 pounds and just wants to maintain their weight.

Doesn't seem completely fair, does it? But it's worth it! In addition to making you feel better, as much as five percent of your body weight can have a positive impact on your health, says Dr. March. "You can reduce your risk of diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease," she says. And you still have a month to rock the bikini bottom!

Related links:

  • 10 real reasons to lose 10 pounds
  • Your Diet Survival Guide