Back in the old days, maybe 50 years ago, scientists believed that it was all about the math. We decided that a deficit of 3500 calories would equal 1 pound of weight loss and the weight loss was from the burning of fat stores for that energy. If that’s the case, a daily deficit of 500 calories per day would be equal to 1 pound of fat loss per week. But that is not the case at all. The reason for the leveling off of weight loss is explained today.

But first, a bittersweet announcement. I will be ending my ongoing podcast episodes at episode 300, but the old content will remain available on my website, Healing Outside the box. The work to put out a podcast episode was just too much for someone like myself, as I am getting physically weaker. I will still continue to write and keep my website running, and look into nutrition in the news for my social media posts.

Speaking of which, the makers of balance of nature supplements have been ordered to stop production and sales of their products until they can come into compliance with FDA regulations. You can read more details in this article from the Center of Science for the Public Interest.

There is a short video by Dr. Michael Gregor that discusses the science behind the debunking of the “3500 calories for one pound myth” about weight loss. There is a blog post as well with similar information.

The national Institute of Health (NIH) has a few articles that provide the scientific background as to why the theories are changing. It is related to the power of our gut microbiota. More specifically, how the quality of the microorganisms can either help or hurt our weight loss efforts. The first is an explanation of how both probiotics and prebiotics can set up healthy gut microbiota to make weight loss happen more effectively. The second explains that a higher diversity of gut microbiota affects weight loss. They show that a lower diversity of microbes was related to obesity and insulin resistance.

It’s all about the microbes, baby.