Reverse diet or how to end weight loss and not fall into the yo-yo trap?

Are you finishing the reduction? Were you able to achieve satisfactory results? Would you like to avoid the yo-yo effect? We advise on how to successfully exit a reduction diet.

Very often, returning to normal food after a reduction diet is a challenge. Unfortunately, many people who achieve fantastic results during reduction, quickly return to old eating habits, which quickly regain kilograms lost during weight loss. Studies show that most people recover what they lost plus an additional 8% by weight.

One of the popular solutions to avoid this trap is the use of reverse diets.

What is reverse diet? 

It is an organized process that involves gradually increasing the calorie content of the diet after the reduction. The main assumption of the reverse diet is to boost metabolism and, in the case of athletes, increase muscle mass with relatively little fat storage. Reverse diet is the stage of transition from a negative caloric balance to the daily required energy demand.

If you are worried that you will regain your weight loss after a reduction diet, follow these guidelines.

Gradually increase the caloric content of the diet

Usually, during the reduction of body fat, we gradually reduce the calorie content of our diet, so also exit from slimming should be done gradually.

Increasing the caloric content of the diet should take place relatively slowly without major calories. We regularly increase the supply of carbohydrates and fats in the diet until we reach the zero point. The zero point is the daily energy requirement for maintaining body weight.

We increase the caloric content of the diet by 5-10%, keep the given assumption for a week. We observe what happens if the weight does not increase or its increase is insignificant, we again increase the caloric content of the diet.

Take regular measurements

Regular weight and body weight control is an important part of a reverse diet because they are the best indicators of change. After a week of adding calories to your diet, your weight may increase slightly, but if your waist size does not change, the process is normal.

Assume that an increase in weight to 0.5 kg per week and no increase in waist circumference is a sign that next week we are adding calories to the diet. Otherwise, keep the same assumptions as before.

It is also a good idea to take photos of your figure.

Sometimes the body needs more than a week to adapt to a slight increase in calories during a reverse diet, so don’t be afraid to wait longer than before you increase the calorie intake again.

Add carbohydrates and good quality fats to your diet

A slight increase in calorie intake should primarily come from carbohydrates, because they improve the thyroid gland, which regulates metabolism, fill depleted muscle cells with glycogen, increase leptin (satiety hormone) levels and increase your performance in the gym. Good fats can also be used to increase the calorie content of your diet. Aim mainly at olive oil, avocados, nuts, egg yolks.

Continue cardio training

Cardio should not be put off only because the fat reduction phase is over! Aerobic training plays an inseparable role in maintaining cardiovascular health, heart health, bowel performance, regeneration, well-being and proper body composition.

It is not necessary to do cardio with the same frequency as during reduction, but it is still worth including them in your weekly plan, even in the form of regular walks. It is a good idea to gradually reduce the number of cardio sessions during the week.

Use extra energy for training

Higher calorie diet means more energy, and more energy means better results in training. Stronger workouts will give a huge anabolic response, especially at this time immediately after exiting low calories. As a bonus, body fat accumulation will naturally be kept to a minimum due to the increase in energy expenditure resulting from intense training. With more fuel, it’s time to focus on increasing your training intensity and track your progress from training to training.

The choice is yours!
The choice is yours!

Never forget hydration

During a low carbohydrate diet, muscles often become flat because they lack some glycogen. It is quickly replenished during a reverse diet, when we add calories mainly from carbohydrates. This is a desirable reaction, but there is a greater risk of dehydration.

Glycogen works like a sponge, ‘absorbing’ the water it can find. During the reverse diet, make sure you drink the right amount of water each day.

Support the intestines

The intestines quickly adapt to the foods they regularly receive. Therefore, when you suddenly add another product to your diet, when you suddenly increase the amount of carbohydrates, your intestines may be initially dissatisfied. For this reason, it’s always good to take care of your gut health and support digestion.

It is worth taking probiotics, taking care of hydration, including silage and fermented products, such as kefir, in your menu, keeping an eye on the right amount of fiber in your diet.

Stick to the rules

It is always wise to maintain specific eating habits regardless of your current purpose. Although after reduction you can afford greater diet flexibility, in contrast to the acute phase of fat loss, you should not allow yourself to completely relax and consume everything that comes into your hands.

Summarizing

Reverse diet is a process focused on gradually increasing calorie intake after an intense phase of reduced calorie diet. Made with precision and discipline, it will allow you to build lean muscle tissue and avoid fat gain after the reduction, which will ensure a great improvement in body composition and appearance.