Why should you stop dieting?
As my journey continues in this health and wellness industry, I find myself getting frustrated with all this nonsense about this diet and that diet.
If you’re trying to get healthy and in shape, my hat goes off to you. My one bit of advice is don’t get so stressed out about what you need to be eating. What I try to teach people is that, diets are temporary!
People get so caught up on finding a certain diet that they over complicate this fitness journey. Finding a diet is cool and all but you have to find a diet that fits your life and then turn slowly start to implement that diet and then before you know it, it becomes a lifestyle.
There are definitely some very awesome dieting programs out there. I haven’t tried them all but I know for sure I recommend these 4 to my clients. I will inform you of them, then go into detail about them individually. Some focus on reducing your appetite, while others focus on restricting calories, carbs or fat.
Since all of them claim to be “the best” diet, it can be hard to know which ones are worth trying. The truth is that no one diet is best for everyone, and what works for you may not work for someone else.
“The Paleo Diet,” “The Ketogenic Diet,”Mediterranean Diet,”and “Intermittent Fasting.” These 4 diets in my opinion are the best diets that should be implemented as a lifestyle. Like I said before find what you like and what works for you, but these 4 are what I recommend.
I personally don’t eat a specific diet. If anything, I use all 4 of them!
The Paleo Diet
The paleo diet claims that modern humans should eat the same foods that their hunter-gatherer ancestors ate — the way humans were genetically designed to eat before agriculture developed.
The theory is that most modern diseases can be linked to the Western diet and the consumption of grains, dairy and processed foods.
While it’s debatable that this diet is comprised of the same foods your ancestors ate, it is linked to several impressive health benefits.
How it works: The paleo diet emphasizes whole foods, lean protein, vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds, while avoiding processed foods, sugar, dairy and grains.
Some more flexible versions of the paleo diet also allow for dairy like cheese and butter, as well as tubers like potatoes and sweet potatoes.
Weight loss: Several studies have shown that the paleo diet can lead to significant weight loss and reduced waist size.
In studies, paleo dieters have also been shown to automatically eat much fewer carbs, more protein and 300–900 fewer calories per day.
Other benefits: The diet seems effective at reducing risk factors for heart disease, such as cholesterol, blood sugar, blood triglycerides and blood pressure.
The downside: The paleo diet eliminates whole grains, legumes and dairy. Therefore, it unnecessarily eliminates several healthy and nutritious food groups.
The Ketogenic Diet
The ketogenic diet (often termed keto) is a very low-carb, high-fat diet that shares many similarities with the Atkins and low-carb diets.
It involves drastically reducing carbohydrate intake, and replacing it with fat. The reduction in carbs puts your body into a metabolic state called ketosis.
When this happens, your body becomes incredibly efficient at burning fat for energy. It also turns fat into ketones in the liver, which can supply energy for the brain.
Ketogenic diets can cause massive reductions in blood sugar and insulin levels. This, along with the increased ketones, has numerous health benefits.
How it works: Low-carb diets are based on eating unlimited amounts of protein and fat, while severely limiting your carb intake.
Weight loss: Numerous studies show low-carb diets are extremely helpful for weight loss, especially in overweight and obese individuals.
Other benefits: Low-carb diets tend to reduce your appetite and make you feel less hungry, leading to an automatic reduction in calorie intake.
Furthermore, low-carb diets may benefit many major disease risk factors, such as blood triglycerides, cholesterol levels, blood sugar levels, insulin levels and blood pressure.
The downside: Low-carb diets do not suit everyone. Some may feel great on them, while others will feel miserable.
Some people may experience an increase in LDL, the “bad” cholesterol.
In extremely rare cases, very low-carb diets can cause a serious condition called ketoacidosis. This condition seems to be more common in lactating women and can be fatal if left untreated.
However, low-carb diets are safe for the majority of people.
The Mediterranean Diet
The Mediterranean diet is based on the traditional foods that people used to eat in countries like Italy and Greece back in the year 1960.
Researchers noted that these people were exceptionally healthy compared to Americans and had a low risk of many killer diseases.
Numerous studies have now shown that the Mediterranean diet can cause weight loss and help prevent heart attacks, strokes, type 2 diabetes and premature death.
How it works:
Eat: Vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, legumes, potatoes, whole grains, breads, herbs, spices, fish, seafood and extra virgin olive oil.
Eat in moderation: Poultry, eggs, cheese and yogurt.
Eat only rarely: Red meat.Don’t eat: Sugar-sweetened beverages, added sugars, processed meat, refined grains, refined oils and other highly processed foods.
Intermittent fasting is an eating pattern that cycles between periods of fasting and eating.
Rather than restricting the foods you eat, it states when you should eat them.
Therefore, it can be seen as more of an eating pattern than a diet.
The most popular ways to do intermittent fasting are:
The 16/8 method: Involves skipping breakfast and restricting your daily eating period to 8 hours, subsequently fasting for the remaining 16 hours of the day.
The eat-stop-eat method: Involves 24-hour fasts once or twice per week on non-consecutive days.
The 5:2 diet: On two non-consecutive days of the week, you restrict your intake to 500–600 calories.On the five remaining days, you eat like normal.
The warrior diet: Eat small amounts of raw fruits and vegetables during the day and one huge meal at night, basically fasting during the day and feasting at night within a 4-hour window.
How it works: Intermittent fasting is commonly used for weight loss because it leads to relatively easy calorie restriction.
It can make you eat fewer calories overall, as long as you don’t overcompensate by eating much more during the eating periods.
Weight loss: Intermittent fasting is generally very successful for weight loss. It has been shown to cause weight loss of 3–8% over a period of 3–24 weeks, which is a lot compared to most weight loss studies.
In addition to causing less muscle loss than standard calorie restriction, it may increase your metabolic rate by 3.6–14% in the short-term.
Other benefits: Intermittent fasting may reduce markers of inflammation, cholesterol levels, blood triglycerides and blood sugar levels.
The downside: Although intermittent fasting is safe for well-nourished and healthy people, it does not suit everyone.
Some studies have shown it’s not as beneficial for women as it is for men.
In addition, some people should avoid fasting. This includes those sensitive to drops in blood sugar levels, pregnant women, breastfeeding moms, teenagers, children and people who are malnourished, underweight or nutrient deficient.(Credit for description of diets goes to Authority Nutrition.)
There is no such thing as a “best” weight loss diet.Different diets work for different people, and you should pick a way of eating that suits your lifestyle and your taste preferences.
The best diet for you is the one you can actually stick to in the long-term.
So let’s stop dieting and start living.