Which Fad Diet is Right for You?

Posted on Sep 24, 2016

Posted in: Healthy Diet,Uncategorized

An alternative title for this article could be “If Cavemen Ate So Healthy Why are They Extinct?”

So I pose the question to you again- Which Fad Diet is Right for You? 

Obviously the above examples are extreme, but what is scary is that they are still around.  Madonna and Demi Moore promote the Lunar Diet.  The tapeworm diet originated in the 1920s, but has had a recent reemergence.  There are several reported cases of people being treated for tapeworms that have found a way out the GI tract and found cozier digs,  like your brain! Fad diets continue to remain popular because they all promise the same thing-maximum weight loss with minimal lifestyle changes.

Why don’t fad diets work?

  1. They rely on extreme restrictions for a short duration which cause unrealistic weight loss
  2. They are often not geared toward promoting a long-term healthy lifestyle
  3. Fad diets are so extreme that the weight lost is quickly re-gained after person returns to their normal lifestyle

While I’m sure you’re telling yourself that you would never fall into the trap of a fad diet, don’t be too sure.  Today’s diets are re-branded often with scientific claims to support their reasoning some examples include: Atkins, Paleo and Raw Diets.  Of course these diets are very popular and to a certain degree healthier that the above mentioned fad diets, but they are not the miracle cure all.

I remember when Atkins became popular about 15 years ago people were ecstatic!  The basic principle people took from it is you can eat whatever you want unless it’s an evil carb.  The public translated it to mean I can eat a pound of bacon a day as long as I hold the pasta.  raw vegetables in shape of anatomy

Raw diets sound very healthy, and you meet your caloric needs in a healthful way.  The issue is  your GI tract is not equipped to absorb enough nutrients from the green shakes and uncooked foods.  Some people have had issues with malnutrition when they try switching to 100% raw lifestyle.

Paleo has some of the same issues of past fad diets because it restricts food groups from your diet, relying heavily on food that your caveman ancestors ate.  Well first off, pushing a cart to the meat department is not expending the same calories as it took our ancestors to hunt and gather.  Also you need to consider what they were eating compared to us.  They truly hunted lean, healthy wild game, slightly different than what we find at the butcher shop.  Ultimately we can’t be positive of exactly what was eaten in the paleo days, how can we base our eating

So what’s the answer? 

Same as it’s always been, try eating a well balanced diet including a wide range of healthy ingredients.  Weight loss can be achieved by eating the proper amount of calories and regular exercise.

It also helps to speak with your doctor.  Depending on your current health conditions some diets might be contraindicated.  You might also consider meeting with a dietitian to set you on the right path with meal plans and education about proper portions etc,

Avoiding fad diets and replacing your eating habits with healthy choices may take some time, but ultimately it is the path that will set you up for the most success.