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Diet Diva
Diet Diva

Get advice on healthy eating, nutrition, and weight loss from expert dietitian Tara Gidus. 

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Battle of the Sexes

Have you ever tried to compete against someone in a weight loss contest? Good luck if you are a woman competing against a man! Have you ever seen The Biggest Loser on TV? They measure by percentage of weight lost instead of total pounds lost because it is absolutely true that men and women are NOT created equally!

Men lose weight faster, and they lose more of it. I know ladies, life is just NOT FAIR! Why do the men have the advantage in weight loss wars?

  1. Higher Metabolism. Men have more muscle than women, meaning that they have a higher metabolism. Men burn more calories every second of the day--sitting, standing, and even sleeping!
  2. Less Body Fat. Women genetically have more body fat. We need more body fat for reproductive purposes, so our bodies like to hang on to that body fat on women more so than men (simplistically speaking).
  3. Less Conscious. Men tend to be less conscious than women when it comes to diet. Many women are already using lower calorie foods, so there is not as much room for improvement when they decide to cut calories. Once a man becomes "enlightened" to what he can improve in his diet, he makes a few simple changes and sees immediate results.
  4. Emotional Connection to Food. Men seem to be able to decide that they will cut back on their intake and lose weight without much effort. It is very black and white for a man. Women have a stronger emotional connection to food and it is more difficult for them to eliminate calories that are close to their heart (chocolate!)
  5. Exercise Burns More Calories. Similar to number 1, men will burn more calories during exercise because of their higher metabolism. Higher calorie burn equals faster weight loss.
  6. Men Can Eat More. Men need more calories to maintain their higher weight, so when they cut back on their calories, they do not have to cut back as much as women to lose weight.
Hang in there, ladies! You can and will lose weight. Just don't compare yourself to the man in your life. You have a different genetic (and emotional) makeup and your cannot compare your weight loss to his. Remember, the slower the weight comes off, the more likely it is to stay off. Slow and steady!

Illustration courtesy of cosmonova
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About the Author


Tara Gidus is a nationally recognized expert and spokesperson on nutrition and fitness.

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