If you’re relying on any of these five weight loss “tricks” to get rid of your stubborn fat, you will be very disappointed because they DON’T work.

There are five popular things that many people do in an effort to lose weight, whether it’s 20 pounds, 50 pounds or more than a hundred pounds.

These tactics just do not work and will only set you up for frustration.

Five Things NOT to Do if You Want to Lose Weight

These diet tricks may work for one particular meal, or for even half the day or the entire day. But long-term? DO NOT COUNT ON IT.

1     “Put the fork down after every bite.”

The idea here is to force yourself to take longer to finish a meal because allegedly, it takes 20 minutes for hunger signals to be suppressed by satiation signals in the brain.

If this were true, people would not continue stuffing themselves beyond the 20 minute mark.

If you’re used to keeping the fork levitated, then putting it down after every bite will require conscious thought, something that’s not likely to happen if you’re engaged in conversation or watching TV while eating.

And unless you have 300 bites waiting, the extra time that putting the fork down creates will be negligible.

And what if you put the fork down quickly? How soon after putting it down are you supposed to bring it back up again? Should you wait 10 seconds? Thirty seconds?

Certainly there are people who’ve put the fork or spoon down and delayed the next mouthful simply because they were engrossed in a TV show. Yet they ended up finishing every bite of food that they had planned for.

If you’re hungry and you have delicious food on your plate staring back at you, putting the fork down won’t stop you from eating the whole thing and going for seconds.

2     “Drink water when you feel hungry because you might be mistaking thirst for hunger.”

How many people can actually fool their brains into falling for this? Hunger is hunger, and thirst is thirst. These physical sensations have very different feelings.

You can’t mistake thirst for hunger any more than you can mistake heat for cold.

Go ahead, fill up on water and see if it makes your hunger for a pizza or some fresh-baked gooey chocolate chip cookies vanish like magic.

If you guzzle enough water, this will temporarily suppress your desire for indulging.

But once the bloated discomfort goes away … you’ll want to eat — unless you guzzle another quart of water.

You’ll be practically living on the toilet with this approach — and it’s also very possible to feel bloated and hungry at the same time.

3     “Fill up on water anyways if you’re hungry.”

People who give this nutty advice don’t realize how unpleasant it actually is to force water down one’s throat when one is not the least bit thirsty.

4    “Eat slowly.”

The idea behind this, again, is that it takes 20 minutes for your brain to realize your stomach is full. If this were true, eager overeaters would quit after 20 minutes.

This rule assumes that overeaters typically take less than 20 minutes to complete a feast. False!

A binge can take well over 20 minutes if it involves ongoing preparation.

Actually, with enough food, a binge can easily exceed 20 minutes simply due to volume of food and how messy it is, such as with pizza or tacos.

Add to that other variables that can make a meal exceed 45 minutes such as slow chewing, conversation, watching TV, reading and computer work – yet obesity continues to be an epidemic!

This crazy rule assumes your food tastes just as good cold as it does hot. If you take your time eating fish, you’ll soon be eating “cold” fish.

And who wants “cold” mashed potatoes, French fries or soup? Who wants spaghetti and meatballs that have lost their heat?

5    “Drink a glass of water before every meal.”

If this really worked, few people would be overweight. You either want a big heap of spaghetti and meatballs or you don’t.

A glass of water prior to a meal also won’t make that moist fudge layer cake any less palatable.

“Yeah right, like a glass of water before THIS will make me want only half of it!” Shutterstock/Gts

The best “trick” for weight loss is to abandon the diet gimmicks and eat mostly plant-based whole foods; make an effort to control portions and realize that it’s okay to be a little hungry in between meals (but not malnourished!); limit sugar-added foods; and hit the gym hard.

Or, if you don’t go to a gym, you can still do some furious strength training at home with basic equipment. You can also do aerobic exercise without a gym.

So fill up on water because your body needs water for optimal performance and workout recovery, and all bodily functions…but come on, appetite suppression? You know better.

Lorra Garrick is a former personal trainer certified through the American Council on Exercise. At Bally Total Fitness she trained women and men of all ages for fat loss, muscle building, fitness and improved health. 
Top image: ©Lorra Garrick