Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Health magazines - friend or foe?

Confession - I LOVE magazines! Seriously, I have a problem.  And yes I know most are available on my iPad or Kindle and no, I won't be switching from the paper version any time soon! I seriously get 5+ magazines delivered every month.  Moving to the US was the best thing for me for a lot of reasons but one of the best reasons is magazine subscriptions are insanely cheap down here!  So yeah...I love magazines and obviously if you read this blog, you know I am obsessed with health and nutrition so many of my magazines are health related.  But a few months back I read this great article from Coach Calorie (read it here, it's a good one) and it really got me thinking about the negative aspects of some magazines.

The truth is a lot of magazines make insane promises in their headlines because that's what sells and I get that. No sales = no magazine.  But what do these promises do to the psyche of the new exerciser?  When someones gets the motivation and courage to start a health journey, and they pick up a magazine promising six-pack abs in 2 weeks, what happens to that motivation and courage in 2 weeks when abs are still (of course) nowhere in sight?  If you decide to start eating healthy to lose a bit of weight and you see a cover saying "The 6 foods to eat to burn fat", do you think that's all you have to do?  Does that not completely ignore the factors of portion size, calories consumed, exercise, age, etc, etc, etc??  I don't believe that sets anyone up for success.

I know magazine articles have to be fairly short and to the point.  And I know headlines have to be catchy and intriguing to get people to buy them.  But I caution anyone from believing anything that sounds to good to be true.  There are no magical foods that will burn off all your fat. Unless you already have a very low body fat percentage and good muscle mass, you aren't going to reveal abs in 2 weeks.  You can't lose 14lbs in 14 days.  There is no ONE right diet for everyone.  There is NO easy way to lose weight, burn fat and build muscle.  So next time you're buying a women's health magazine, be aware of exactly what you're buying!

What magazines do you read? What impact do you think they have on you?

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