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The 4 Worst Weight Loss Tips That Will Never Work

Ditch these myths so you can start getting lasting results.
FACT CHECKED BY Alexa Mellardo

The hard truth is that there are far more myths than facts when it comes to weight loss. Even worse, because they're so common, these misconceptions seem even more believable since, well, everyone tells you the same thing. The result? You get more frustrated and hopeless because you think you're doing everything right but not seeing any changes in your body. We're here to share some of the worst weight loss tips that hurt your progress and overall results and can harm your health.

Educate yourself, and you'll make it much easier to melt fat and achieve the body of your dreams. Keep reading to learn more about the weight loss tips to avoid, and next up, don't miss The 1-Month Weight Loss Challenge for a Slimmer You.

"Eat less, move more."

close-up woman tying sneakers next to green smoothie, weight loss tips fitness concept

Many people preach that weight loss is easy: Just eat less and move more. But the reality is that advice is vague, reductionist, and (a wee bit) condescending. Research backs this up. After all, if it were that simple, everyone would be lean—yet many people continually struggle despite their best efforts.

Losing weight is often complex, because there can be emotional and psychological barriers as well as life stresses that make it difficult to shed those extra pounds. For lasting results, you need a specific plan that outlines how many calories to consume, how often to exercise, and how to navigate setbacks when they occur.

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"Eat less fat."

Oftentimes, people teach you to avoid fats so you don't get fat. While it might seem like good advice, it's not actually correct. Sure, fats are more calorically dense than carbs or protein, but the right kind of fats can help you stay full, fight inflammation, maintain your health, and more.

In fact, "fatty" foods like salmon, free-range eggs, avocados, olive oils, nuts, Greek yogurt, dark chocolate, and more are packed with delicious nutrients that can even improve your fat loss. As long as you consume a balanced diet and stick to healthy fats—and not nachos—you'll be fine.

"Cardio for weight loss; strength training for muscle."

mature fitness woman running on treadmill at gym

Actually, the saying should be, "Strength training for weight loss, strength training for muscle." Yes, cardio burns calories, but you still need strength training in order to build the muscle underneath your fat while also burning calories and increasing your metabolism.

Only doing cardio will lead to weight loss, but it won't help you shed your body fat as optimally. As a result, you can end up with a "skinny fat" body where your body weight is considered "normal," but your body fat percentage is still quite high, according to Healthline. Instead, take a balanced approach of both cardio and weight lifting so you can build strength in your muscles, bones, and joints as you get leaner.

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"Detox yourself."

There's no proof that detox diets work, even though it's a common belief that in order to lose weight, you need to remove toxins in your body and purge yourself of all the bad things you've accumulated. Even worse, detox diets can even be dangerous, because you'll deprive your body of calories and nutrients for an extended period.

There is no magic pill that can help you lose weight in a short amount of time. The best "detox" diet is simple: Eat healthy foods, drink lots of water, and avoid junk foods and beverages. If you stick with those foundations, your body will certainly thank you.

Anthony J. Yeung, CSCS
Anthony J. Yeung, CSCS, is a fitness expert featured in Esquire, GQ, and Men’s Health and the founder of GroomBuilder, the destination for men who want to transform their bodies for their weddings. Join the free 5-day course to burn fat and build muscle for the big day! Read more about Anthony