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Weight loss diets can be very difficult to follow. With strict meal timings and all kinds of restrictions of what you can and cannot eat, most weight loss diets are doomed for failure. After all, most of us don't have the willpower to fight food cravings for long. Besides, a lot of the diets involve foods and dishes that are extremely boring and are not satisfying or pleasing to our taste buds. But, what if you were told that you could breathe your fat away, instead of trying to lose it by dieting? Seems absurd and impossible, doesn't it?Although most of you might feel the impulse to dismiss it as wishful thinking, the concept of breathing to lose weight has been around for a while - five years to be precise. The concept of the Long Breath Diet cropped up in Japan in 2013, when former actor Miki Ryosuke claimed to have lost 12 Kgs and five inches around his waist in seven weeks by following the 'diet!' Ryosuke has popularised the concept, and has put out videos to help viewers practice the diet and lose weight. According to the diet expert, the exercise only takes two minutes of your time everyday.

Also Read: The Alkaline Diet: Does it Really Work for Weight Loss?
How To Practice The Long Breath Diet
There are two ways of practicing this breathing technique. One way is to raise your arms above your head and then suck in air through your nose for three seconds and exhale from your mouth for seven seconds. The other way is to tighten the cheeks of your buttocks, place one hand on your abdomen and the other on your lower back to keep it straight, and then inhale through the nose for three seconds and exhale from the mouth for seven seconds. The exercise must be repeated six times at a stretch, and it takes between one to two minutes to complete.

The exercise seemingly works as it engages the inner core muscles, which get a workout due to the prolonged inhalation and forced exhalation. This might be more difficult to achieve than one presumes, because after three seconds, there isn't any air left in your lungs for exhalation. There are tons of videos on the internet to help with the right way to practice this 'diet'.
Also Read: 3-Day Military Diet: The Easiest Way to Lose Weight Quickly

Among the claimed benefits of this diet are a boost in the muscle strength and an increase in metabolism. These benefits are a result of increased oxygen in the blood, which supposedly helps in metabolising fat stored in the body and powering up the muscles.
Does Long Breath Diet Work?
Coming to the most important aspect of the diet - does it work? Most fitness experts are sceptical about the ability of breathing in helping you lose weight. The working principle of the diet is pretty simple - when oxygen reaches the fat molecules stored in the body; it breaks them down into carbon dioxide and water. The carbon dioxide is then picked up the blood, which transports it to the lungs for exhalation. Although, all of this sounds pretty easy and great as a principle, there is limited evidence about the effectiveness of the diet.

It's important to remember that the Long Breath diet is a fad diet, and hence, must always be taken with a pinch of salt.

First things first, this technique is not for everyone. If you are looking forward to weight loss and want quick results, this is not for you.

Weight los s through dehydration is for athletes & professionals who want to lose water weight for an advantage in sports and competitions.

Now, what is the science behind it ?

We all know that our body is 97 per cent water & rest is what constitutes all other things. Imagine, all the while you have been focusing only on the 3 per cent while what if you work on the rest of the 97 per cent ?

The formula
Math wise, normal weight loss is pretty simple. All you have to focus on is burning more calories that you intake, also known as creating a calorie deficit in your body.

Now, in dehydration weight loss model, the formula is the same, just the unit has changed. You have to create a water deficit in your body, that is, you have to sweat and excrete more water than you intake. By doing so, your body becomes light and is easier to carry around.

The 3 techniques of weight loss through dehydration
Think of the ways you can excrete water out of your system. Mostly, you would think of urinating and sweating. However, there's another way of doing so: spitting. The three ways to lose weight through dehydration technique.

a) Sweating
This is the simplest and most common way to lose water weight. All you have to do is sweat out by exercising and moving your body. Another thing that makes your body sweat more besides activity is temperature.

b) Urinating
When you are trying to lose weight through dehydration and have already sweated a lot, it can get hard to get the nature's call. For this reason, many people who are into it opt for diuretics, even natural diuretics such as parsley & green and black teas.

c) Spitting
A similar impact can be had by spitting. It is pretty common to see athletes spit into containers during the course of their sport. By doing so, they can easily lose upto a cup or more of water from their bodies.

Whether you're overweight or not, exercise can reduce cholesterol. Better yet, a moderate physical activity can help raise high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, the "good" cholesterol. With your doctor's OK, work up to at least 30mins of exercise a day. Remember that adding physical activity, even in 10-minute intervals several times a day can help you begin to lose weight. Just be sure that you can keep up the changes you decide to make. Consider:

- Taking a brisk daily walk during your lunch hour.
- Go for early morning walks.
- Swimming laps
- Playing a favourite sport
- Taking an dance/aerobics class
- Using weight machines or lifting free weights to build muscle tone.
- Household Chores such as cleaning, lifting, etc.

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- Maintaining a healthy weight: It helps promote good circulation. If a person is overweight, it may negatively affect their circulation. Losing weight improved circulation for women who were overweight. The participants increased their levels of a protein called adiponectin that is associated with vascular function.

- Practicing yoga: Yoga is a low-impact exercise that is easy to modify for beginners. It involves bending, stretching, and twisting. These movements can help to compress and decompress a person's veins, which may improve circulation. Yoga is beneficial for the cardiovascular system and a person's metabolism. A simple yoga position for beginners to try is the downward-facing dog. This helps improve circulation as it puts the hips and heart above the head, allowing gravity to increase blood flow towards the head.

- Jogging: It improves the body's ability to take in and use oxygen. It also improves the capacity of blood vessels to dilate, which helps them work more efficiently, allowing the muscles to receive oxygen more easily.

- Keeping iron levels balanced: Iron is an essential mineral for the circulatory system. It is required to make hemoglobin, one of the major components of red blood cells, which is needed to carry oxygen. Eating foods rich in iron, such as red meat or spinach, helps the body maintain this essential mineral. However, maintaining a healthful balance is necessary as well.

- Eating oily fish: The omega-3 fatty acids in oily fish promote cardiovascular health and improve circulation. Oily fish include: salmon, mackerel, sardines, tuna.
For those who are vegetarian or vegan, kale contains a small amount of omega-3 fatty acid. Supplements containing omega-3 fatty acids are another option for people who do not eat fish.

Diet tips you must follow:-

- Protein in every meal: Protein is good for weight loss. It helps in maintaining satiety & keeps you from feeling hungry every now and then. It is also great for muscle building in case you are carrying out weight training along with your diet plan. You need 1gm of protein per kg of body weight. By that logic, if you weigh 50kgs, your daily protein requirement would amount to 50gms which can easily be derived by consuming 1 egg,1/4 liter of milk, 30gms of paneer and close to 100gms of lean meat.

- Snacking: Keep a pouch of nuts or seeds handy to munch on between meals or whenever you seem to battle hunger pangs. Almost anything can be had in the form of snacks - from a small bowl of curd, salads, soup, fruits to a bar of granola, etc.

- Starvation: It is only going to take the sheen off your face, make your hair grow weaker and take a toll on your metabolism. It is better that you exercise portion control, eat smaller but frequent meals. Breakfast should be the heaviest meal of the day and dinner should be the lightest.

- Water therapy: Hydration is extremely important for weight loss and to keep your system balanced. Sometimes an imbalance of electrolytes in your body may make you feel drained out. Besides lots of water, you must load up on coconut water, Lemonade and fresh fruit juices.

- Miscellaneous: Caffeine can do wonders for your metabolism; Ensure not having more than 400mg of caffeine in a day via various sources. Also, black coffee is your best bet for weight loss and revving up your metabolism. Sugar and processed items must be avoided. White carbs are bad for weight loss, and so are refined food items. Fats are essential for our health, they are one of the most important food groups required by our body for proper functioning.

The idea is never to completely cut out any food group but to strike a balance between all of them and consume as much the body actually needs.

Dr. Sumit Patil
Dr. Sumit Patil
BAMS, Family Physician General Physician, 15 yrs, Pune
Dr. Prashant Wankhede
Dr. Prashant Wankhede
MS/MD - Ayurveda, Pune
Dr. Amol Dange
Dr. Amol Dange
MBBS, Diabetologist, 14 yrs, Pune
Dr. Sneha Kale
Dr. Sneha Kale
MS/MD - Ayurveda, Ayurveda Gynaecologist, 3 yrs, Pune
Dr. Deepak  Bhalerao
Dr. Deepak Bhalerao
BHMS, Adult Congenital Cardiologist Cardiologist, 17 yrs, Pune
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