Many people are on a dieting roller coaster. Some starve or semi-starve themselves for several days to weeks and then eat excessively for a period of time. This is sometimes called yo-yo dieting. During the period of drastic energy restriction, the body will deplete its glycogen stores and rely heavily upon stored fat and protein to power metabolic activities. Since protein is largely derived from lean body tissue, such as skeletal muscle, this practice tends to reduce muscle mass and in turn decrease basal metabolism. This can result in a decrease in RMR calories and a greater likelihood of gaining weight when we return to eating an unrestricted amount of energy. Furthermore, it may be that the activity of some of the enzymes involved in making fat from excessive carbohydrates and amino acids may be slightly higher once we begin to eat again. Therefore, we have ultimately set ourselves up for a potentially quick return of body weight, especially body fat.
Was this article helpful?