If fat loss and muscle definition are your goals, performing strength training exercises regularly is often an effective strategy. However, lifting weights on a regular basis isn’t a guarantee you’ll burn body fat or lose weight. Combine resistance training with an appropriate diet to help meet your weight management and body composition goals.
Fat LossCombining strength-training exercises (such as weight lifting) with a reduced-calorie diet plan can help you shed unwanted body fat, especially in your midsection. A study published in 2013 in the American Journal of Hypertension reports that while weight training without dieting doesn’t affect body composition, reducing your calorie intake combined with weightlifting helps reduce trunk fat and prevents loss of lean muscle mass that can occur while dieting.
Dieting and resistance training may help lower your blood cholesterol levels and reduce your risk for developing heart disease. A study published in 2012 in Nutricion Hospitalaria found that combining weight training with a reduced-calorie diet led to lower low-density lipoprotein, or LDL, cholesterol and total cholesterol levels in obese study subjects with high blood cholesterol. Researchers who conducted this study found that lower protein intakes, consisting of less than 22 percent of total calories from protein, led to greater improvements in LDL values.
Resistance training generally doesn’t lead to weight loss unless you combine it with a reduced-calorie diet. The studies published in 2013 in the American Journal of Hypertension and in 2012 in Nutricion Hospitalaria both found that combining reduced-calorie diets with resistance training aids in weight loss and reduces waist circumference. If weight loss is your goal, aim to reduce your food intake by 500 to 1,000 calories per day to lose about 1 to 2 pounds per week.
Cucumbers Lowers Blood Sugar
Several animal and test-tube studies have found that cucumbers may help reduce blood sugar levels and prevent some complications of diabetes. One animal study examined the effects of various plants on blood sugar. Cucumbers were shown to effectively reduce and control blood sugar levels. Another animal study induced diabetes in mice and then supplemented them with cucumber peel extract. Cucumber peel reversed most of the diabetes-associated changes and caused a decrease in blood sugar.