Do I need to exercise more to lose weight?

No, is the simple answer.

Exercise is vital for people to be healthy. Without it we cannot function anywhere near as well as we would like. Exercise helps increase lung capacity, strengthens the heart and helps circulate blood and oxygen around the body. It also produces endorphins, those lovely “feel good hormones.”

But why do so many people go to the gym every week yet still look the same?

You can go to the gym as much as you want but if you are not eating correctly your body won’t change. After you have worked out, if you keep fueling your body with sugar, the body will just keep burning the sugar and not the fat. So you won’t change. Get rid of the power drinks, shop-bought power bars and “health drinks,” as so many of them are loaded with sugar in one form or another, or even worse, chemical sweeteners such as aspartame.

The ideal form of fuel for the body is fat. You should eat healthy fats such as olive, hemp, flaxseed, fish and coconut oils. With the exception of coconut oil, these all are full of omega 3, which is known for its heart-healthy benefits. We need to limit the amount of unhealthy carbohydrates, such as white bread, rice, pasta and processed foods, as these are mostly simple carbohydrates. They turn to sugars and, if not used, get stored as fat.

So it’s not as healthy as we have been led to believe over the years to come out of the gym and drink a large glass of orange juice. Freshly squeezed or not, orange juice has a high sugar content and will be used up as fuel rather than forcing your body to burn fat cells.

A healthier option is some form of protein, such as a raw chocolate and nut shake and more complex carbohydrates, such as greens, beans, chickpeas or tahini. Exactly what you eat will depend upon what time of day you work out and how much you work out.

As with all things, balance is the key and no one size fits all. Finding

out what best suits you takes a little time, but you’re worth it!

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