weight loss concept
Julie Hambleton
Julie Hambleton
March 4, 2024 ·  8 min read

10 Harsh Truths About Losing Weight That No One Will Ever Tell You

Since as long as anyone can remember, weight loss has been the number one topic in news, magazines, on TV, and now the internet and social media. This is especially so for women, who are constantly bombarded with messages telling them that they need to be thin and beautiful in order to be valued by society. However, amidst the plethora of information available, there are certain harsh truths about losing weight that often go unspoken. Let’s dive into these truths, debunk myths, and provide insights on how to manage your weight in a balanced and healthy way.

The Truth About Losing Weight

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Society often places a significant emphasis on body weight, associating being overweight with laziness or lack of willpower. However, it is crucial to understand that weight is not simply a matter of willpower but a complex interplay of genetic, biological, and environmental factors. This societal misconception can lead to feelings of shame and guilt, hindering the weight-loss journey.

Read More: Woman Posts Dramatic Before-And-After Pics of One Pound Loss – Proves That Weight Is Meaningless

The 10 Harsh Truths About Weight Loss

As already mentioned, there are many facts about weight loss that often go unspoken. These are things that are important for everyone to understand before embarking on a weight loss journey, yet few really do. Online, we often see headlines or videos saying that “if we just did xyz” we would lose weight. The truth is that weight loss is complicated – biologically, mentally, and emotionally. These are the things that people don’t talk about when it comes to the truth about losing weight.

1. All Calories Equal (but their source isn’t)

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Calories are a measure of energy. This means that a calorie from soda, is the same as a calorie from whole milk, just like the distance of one mile on the moon is the same as a mile in Texas. However, different calorie sources have varying effects on your weight and health. While yes many of us are in pursuit of losing fat, it should be done in a nutritious, sustainable, and healthy way. Rather than excessive amounts of processed, low-calorie foods, we should focus on nutrient-dense, unprocessed, healthy foods. A healthy diet has room for everything, processed foods and all, its what makes up the bulk of your diet that matters. This will not only help you lose weight but will also vastly improve your health. (1)

2. Losing Weight is not a Linear Process

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Weight loss is rarely a straightforward journey. Fluctuations in weight are normal, and factors like water retention and the menstrual cycle can influence it. The key is to focus on the overall downward trend rather than fixating on daily or weekly fluctuations. More importantly than a number on a scale, you should focus on how you feel and look. Remember, as you lose weight and gain muscle (because you are pairing a healthy diet with an exercise routine!), the number on the scale will fluctuate. This is because muscle is denser and weighs more than fat. Are you feeling more energetic than usual? Starting to like what you see in the mirror? That is what really matters. (2)

3. Supplements Offer Limited Help

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The weight-loss supplement industry is vast, but most supplements have limited effectiveness. The placebo effect often plays a significant role, and only a few supplements have demonstrated modest effects on weight loss over time. Not only this, but many supplements – particularly weight loss ones – come with negative side effects. If you want to supplement your health, consider ones such as Omega-3 supplements, which support health and are anti-inflammatory, rather than things marketed as “for weight loss.” (3)

Read More: How Hormones Affect Our Weight and What You Can Do To Improve Them

4. Weight is Not Just About Willpower

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Obesity is a complex disorder influenced by genetic, biological, and environmental factors. It is not solely a matter of willpower, and conditions like hypothyroidism, PCOS, and depression can increase the risk of weight gain. Losing weight is possible but may be more challenging for some individuals. Speak to your healthcare provider if you are struggling, as they can help you uncover underlying conditions that may be affecting your fat storage. (4)

5. Eating Less and Moving More is Not the Ultimate Solution

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Yes, it is true that generally to lose fat you need to eat less (be in a calorie deficit) and move more. However, the common advice of eating less and exercising more oversimplifies the weight-loss process. It fails to address the physiological and biochemical factors that contribute to weight-related challenges. A holistic approach is necessary for sustainable weight loss. (5)

6. Carbs Themselves Are Not the Culprit

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In the 1980’s fat was the common enemy, now it’s carbs. The truth is, whether it’s carbs, fats, or any other macronutrient, we need all of them to be healthy. In fact, your brain needs carbohydrates to thrive. Low-carb diets can be effective for weight loss, but it is important to differentiate between whole-food carbohydrates and refined carbs. Whole-food, single-ingredient carb-based foods are actually healthy and have been a part of the human diet for a long time. Consuming too much sugar and plenty of processed, pre-packaged snacks, meals, and desserts? Not going to cut it. (6)

Read More: Woman’s Death Linked to Ozempic After Trying to Lose Weight for Daughter’s Wedding

7. Fat Alone Does Not Make You Fat

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While fat is more calorie-dense, it is not solely responsible for weight gain. Diets that are high in fat and low in carbs have actually shown positive results for weight loss. Healthy fats are necessary for proper bodily function and hormonal balance. Hormonal balance is key for weight management and weight loss, so cutting down as low as possible on fat won’t achieve the results you want. (7)

8. Breakfast is Not a Necessity for Weight Loss

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The notion that breakfast is necessary for weight loss is a myth. While studies show that breakfast skippers tend to weigh more, controlled studies have shown that eating or skipping breakfast has no significant impact on weight loss. What matters is what you eat throughout the day, hydration status, exercise level, sleep patterns, and more. Remember, weight loss requires a healthy lifestyle, not just a diet, exercise regime, or any other fad or trend. (8)

9. Fast Food Can Have Healthier Options

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Your life is busy, sometimes fast food is necessary. Not all fast food, however, is unhealthy or fattening. Many fast food chains now offer healthier alternatives, allowing individuals to make better choices when pressed for time or energy to cook. (9)

10. Weight Loss Does Not Guarantee Happiness

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Contrary to popular belief, weight loss does not always lead to happiness. Relationships, self-confidence, and mental health can be significantly impacted during the weight-loss journey. What’s more, many people during the weight loss process lose themselves and actually become more self-conscious than they were before. It’s easy to become hyper-fixated on your body and weight during the journey and place too much of your personal value on whether or not you lose the weight you want and manage to keep it off. It is important to prioritize overall well-being rather than solely focusing on weight loss. Learn to be happy with yourself first, then approach weight loss as an act of self-love and lifestyle improvement rather than out of self-loathing. (10)

Read More: 25 year old dad takes diet pills to lose weight – ends up almost losing one of his legs instead

How to Manage Your Weight without Compromising Self-Confidence and Mental Health

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As was already stated, the belief that losing weight will make you happy and boost your self-confidence and self-worth is misleading. It is far too common for people to become so concerned about if they’re losing weight, how quickly they are losing weight, and if they are keeping it off or not that they lose sight of the real goal. Despite what the media tells you, weight loss shouldn’t be about a number on a scale or even looking good in a bikini. Rather, it should be about reclaiming your health and vitality so that you feel good and can truly thrive.

Here are some tips on how to embark on a weight loss journey:

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  • Set Realistic Goals: Instead of setting unrealistic goals based solely on weight, focus on overall well-being and lifestyle changes.
  • Seek Professional Guidance: Consulting with a registered dietitian or healthcare professional can help create a personalized and sustainable weight-management plan.
  • Emphasize Healthy Habits: Shift the focus from weight loss alone to adopting healthy habits such as balanced nutrition, regular physical activity, and adequate sleep.
  • Practice Self-Compassion: Be kind to yourself throughout the process, embracing both successes and setbacks as part of the journey.
  • Surround Yourself with Support: Seek support from friends, family, or weight-loss support groups for encouragement and motivation.

The Bottom Line

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Losing weight is a complex and personal journey that goes beyond simple calorie counting or exercise. Understanding the harsh truths about weight loss, debunking common myths, and prioritizing overall well-being and self-acceptance are essential. By adopting a holistic approach and focusing on sustainable lifestyle changes, individuals can manage their weight effectively while safeguarding their self-confidence and mental health.

Read More: Science Explains How Being Angry Can Make You Gain Weight


  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6628875/
  2. https://www.health.com/weight-loss/how-long-does-it-take-to-lose-weight#:~:text=Weight%20Fluctuations%20Are%20Normal,Your%20muscle
  3. https://today.oregonstate.edu/archives/2012/mar/study-most-weight-loss-supplements-are-not-effective
  4. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17566051/
  5. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25896063/ 
  6. https://www.gastrojournal.org/article/S0016-5085(17)30152-X/fulltext
  7. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/j.1467-789X.2008.00518.x
  8. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24898236/
  9. https://www.prevention.com/food-nutrition/healthy-eating/g19601242/healthy-fast-food-options/
  10. https://www.healthline.com/health/losing-weight-and-relationships