5 Weight Loss MYTHS

Nutrition Advice

According to Jess

So many confusing and contradicting health messages out there that are making us fatter and sicker!

Here are a few of my favourite…

My weight shifted when I realised they were myths!

1. Artificial sweeteners will help you cut calories and lose weight
*Products such as diet soda, sugar-free gum, Equal, Splenda, NutraSweet, Sweet-n-Low, energy drinks.


As science reveals more and more about the complex ways our bodies work, we realize what a stupid thing it is to try to fool them with artificial products.
When presented with an artificial ‘food substitute’ your body is confused and reacts in detrimental ways.

Fake sugars are among the worst things we can be consuming for our health. They are both toxic and addictive. A proven neurotoxin too!

They can fool your body in both directions:

      1. As your body gets used to artificial sweeteners, you crave sweet things, but your satiety hormones are suppressed. You don’t recognise when you are full or satisfied. 
     2. Sweeteners can cause insulin spikes like sugar that render your system subject to metabolic disorders, weight gain and long term deregulation of appetite.

Sweeteners will ultimately cause toxic build up (they are chemicals!!), hormonal imbalance; stimulate appetite and enhance mood disorders. The research is there! Read more http://aspartame.com

See my article SWAP IT– to find out how to sweeten foods/drinks naturally.

2. Exercise is the key to weight loss….Exercise for hours a day and you will get the body of your dreams….


I used to exercise 2x/day- I think it made me fatter!

You can change your body’s hormones and torch off fat in an extremely short amount of time by doing high intensity interval training, and deep muscle resistance exercises using extremely slow, heavy, eccentric movements. Jonathan Bailor,  Smarter Science of Slim is an expert on this topic! His book will explain this further…

Over exercising will make you hungrier! It can also cause you adrenal exhaustion = hormonal imbalance. I have spoken about this over and over. A tired and exhausted body will encounter all kinds of hormonal havoc- fat storage being very much apart of this havoc. 

Exercise less but smarter.

Also, It is 80% what you eat….

FOOD QUALITY is what decides your body composition. (In my humble opinion). 

3. Low fat/Fat free is the way to go because FAT will make you FAT


Think Fat free = Sugar load! They have to replace the good tasting fat with something don’t they!

Stop fearing fat!

Your body needs the good fats!

Best found in avocado, flaxseed, olive oil, coconut oil, nuts and seeds and oily fish (salmon). 

Quick note: Omega 3 supplement is essential to every one in my opinion.

Good fats are essential to give your body energy and to support cell growth. They also help protect your organs (your heart!!) and help your body absorb nutrients and produce important hormones, too. 
Good fats keep you fuller for longer = blood sugar stabilization. Without it we would miss out on vital nutrients – the vitamins A, D and E – and what are known as essential fatty acids (omega 3) which are needed to prevent or control all kinds of ailments and conditions such as heart disease, cancers, immune system deficiencies, arthritis, skin complaints, PMS and menopausal symptoms.

Your body actually makes use of fat! Your body is not as good as making use of simple sugars…Extra sugar that the body cannot make use of is stored as fat!

Sugar is what we need to be weary of!

I used to be a ‘low fat’ and ‘fat free’ junkie. I was petrified of FAT. I would fret over each almond I consumed. If I ate the avocado in the salad I would feel ridiculous amounts guilt and was sure that my body weight would go up in kilos!! 
Ohhhh my old relationship with food…. what stress we put on ourselves!

So when I started eating the good fats what happened? …

Skin cleared- skin started to glow!
Lost all the excess weight
Moods lifted
Bowels regulated
Cravings subsided

Yes yes yes to good fats!!!

Avoid the ugly trans fats. 

Mentality check: Can you eat as much good fat as you want now? NO- THINK MODERATION. Everything in life needs moderation. We are so bad at this..

4. Calories in and calories out- all that matters.

“If you eat fewer calories than you burn, you will lose weight.”


Just like we cannot control our cardiovascular system, we cannot control our metabolism system. It is far more complex than calories in, calories out.  Life sustaining functions are automatically regulated by the body.

Celebrity Nutritionist, Kimberly Snyder explains this well, “The calorie hypothesis assumes that the human body behaves like a simple thermodynamic machine and employs a straightforward method of burning food for energy.
What is a calorie, anyway? By definition, it is the energy needed to raise the temperature of one gram of water by one degree Celsius. While this definition actually defines a kilocalorie, it’s been shortened to calorie. This works in a simple machine, like a car engine, but does it work in human beings?
The answer to this question is very likely no. The human body is an extremely complex biological mechanism that does not operate according to the rules of simple thermodynamics. I personally know people who have counted calories religiously yet remained overweight in spite of their best efforts.
if you eat the foods your body was intended to eat, based on whole and natural foods, your weight problems will be alleviated. You will get more nutrition from such foods, and will not need to eat such huge quantities naturally. These foods also possess fiber, which is a filling and natural means to help with calorie restriction. Furthermore, natural foods do not clog up your digestive tract with sludge, which keeps you from feeling full and getting the maximum amount of nutrition from the foods you are eating. If you eat heavier, more difficult to digest foods that don’t digest as cleanly, you will eat more and rely on external sources of energy such as sugar and caffeine.”

Thanks Kimberly. Well said.

Focusing on the quality of foods will enhance the effectiveness of your metabolism system. When we put the wrong quality of food into our body it becomes hormonally clogged and the level of fat in our body rises.

5. Eat three times a day — don’t snack


We must eat regularly to keep our blood sugar levels stable (every 3-4 hours).
In my opinion- stable blood sugar is the key to good weight. Cravings will be controlled, metabolism will be speedy and you wont be so moody!!
Change your mentality…
When we don’t eat for long periods of time, your body thinks its being starved and then goes into ‘survival mode’. 
Your body is so clever…
So what will it do to survive? Hold onto something, anything…. what does it hold onto? FAT!
Does that clear a few things up ?

Wishing you a healthy filled week. 
Affirmation of the week: I naturally make choices that are good for me, I take loving care of my body and my body responds with health, an abundance of energy and a wonderful feeling of well-being




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Hi Jessica, I believe in synchronicity so when I was guided to you .on FB I was intrigued and inspired. I turned 46 last week and my husband bought me your book. I wanted to thank you for sharing your wisdom in such a beautifully presented way. My  copy is now filled with tabs and post it notes with actual notes throughout. I am dairy intolerant since having my gallbladder removed 15+ years ago, I don't eat meat, very minimal gluten and was told 12 months ago my gut was not digesting my food properly so I wasn't receiving sufficient nutrients and taking supplements would be a waste of time.  My weight fluctuates tending to gain rather than lose but now I believe I have a tool to help me bring my body back into balance that I need for my health and longevity of life - so again thank you. The first few steps to creating a stronger path forward for my health has found its foundation in your beautiful book, The Healthy Life.

With kindest regards Samantha

I'm writing this email because I wanted to tell you how much I love your blog and how you really helped me in my health journey. Thank you for sharing all your advices and experiences.

When I started my studies, I was drinking lots of coffee and I was eaten the wrong foods, and feel bad about it, I wasn't at my best. So I had done some research on the net but at first I didn't found advices that are for me, and then I found your blog. It was exactly what I was looking for, good advices and healthy recipes. Now I'm following your advices on rest more, and snacks between meals and prep the meals and take time for myself to reconnect with my body and let go my anxiety, etc, and I have a more balanced life and have a new relationship with food thanks to you.

I bought your book and it's honestly the best book I have ever bought. I suffer from IBS and anxiety. I have paid so much money seeing naturopaths however after reading your book and all of your tips I'm noticing so much of a difference, so simple and easy to follow. And symptoms have dramatically decreased. Also you have helped me to relax. Currently drinking the protein health smoothie! Thankyou your amazing.


Hey Jessica!
I haven’t yet brought ‘The Healthy Life’, but I do have the clean life and your slim down plan! I would like to thank you so much for the knowledge your share and the message you put across about health and wellness. I’m studying Nutritional Medicine in Melbourne and absolutely love the philosophy that you share with your JSHealth community. The work you’ve done to show people that leading a healthy lifestyle isn’t boring, tasteless, difficult or depriving is amazing and hope to share the message myself one day. You’ve inspired me to start my own blog , to share the message and have taught me so many things about my own health! You should be proud of your achievements! Thank you again

- Jacinta

I searched for help and tips through the Internet and found Jessica Sepel. This is seriously not exaggerated, but she was the reason why I have dared myself to eat again, to have snacks in between, to nourish my body. I could slowly improve my negative thoughts about my body image and my stupid anxiety of gaining weight. Besides, The Cleanest Gut was awesome too! A huge thank you! Especially from my mum. Seriously, without you I wouldn’t be where I am now!


Congratulations on your new book! It looks absolutely gorgeous. I’ve been following you on Instagram for a few years and you’ve inspired me to slowly but surely eat healthier without giving myself a hard time when I don’t. It made me so happy (and weirdly proud) to see the Daily Mail article on The Healthy Life. I remember trying out your recipes before you even had your eBook out! I can’t wait to get my hands on the book. Keep up the great work.

– Sophie

Cooking in this way truly brought out the foodie in me and has instilled a huge passion for health and wellness! Life throws you hard and frustrating things sometimes but I truly believe that this is where we learn more about ourselves and what our passions in life are! Thank you for inspiring me on my journey to health and wellness!


I am a yoga teacher in Johannesburg and am thrilled to have bought your book today. I love making healthy, nutritious food for my family, friends and fellow yogis! Thank you for this book and your inspiration (had to share a pic of my book on my recipe stand in the kitchen).

– Helene

I bought your beautiful book during the week and told my bestie to go out and buy it also! I love love love it. It is the book I would give to my younger self if I could (I am 41 years old). Everything is just so sensible and informative and is definitely a book all teenagers should have. This should be a text book for girls becoming teens. I will love going back and re-reading it many many times and can't wait to make more of the recipes. Thank you Jess - you are an incredibly inspiring woman and you should feel so proud

Michelle Curtis

My fiancé bought your book and we have cooked some of your meals. Amazing! I love your outlook on a healthy lifestyle and your hints and tips with preparing tasty meals are fantastic. Thanks for reviving us to live a healthier lifestyle and get our bodies wedding ready.