Diets: There are new books and articles on dieting appearing all the time. Is there a plan that works for everyone?
If you have weight issues, you are not alone. Even how we perceive our weight affects our health, self-esteem, and our career. Furthermore, research shows a connection between obesity and coronary heart disease, high blood pressure, heart failure, type 2 diabetes, and other health issue. Science Daily, ScienceDirect, and other sources.
1. The Confusing Science of Diets
Sorting out the science in popular diet books is problematic. The advocates of popular diets present research to support their diet. The best-known diets all have some basis in medical research. However, the science in popular diets has contradictory points of view. What they have in common is that they recommend reducing or eliminating one or two of the following sources of nutrition: fats, carbohydrates, or protein.
Furthermore, the research of each of these popular programs leads people to believe that there is only one best-way to lose weight. I have tried many of these popular ways of eating and lost weight despite their contradictory conclusions about the science of nutrition.
2. Rapid Weight Loss
Using popular diets, most people can lose five to fifteen pounds rapidly. These diets require that you restrict your calories and, in some cases, change the way our body burns calories using different methods. However, rapid short-term weight-loss programs don’t prevent rapid weight gain after the dieter ends the diet.
4. Chronic, Progressive Obesity
Dieters have two ways of eating: a popular weight-loss diet and the way of eating that made it necessary to go on a popular weight-loss diet.
Overtime, dieters end up heavier than the last time they dieted, because they return to the weight-gain way of eating that made then gain weight in the first place.
Their normal way of eating satisfies cravings that makes dieting difficult. If a person goes on a diet for three weeks and then returns to their normal eating the rest of the year, they will progressively gain weight. Using their normal way of eating, they will continue to consume more calories than they burn.
Misunderstanding metabolism: Some people attribute this increased weight gain to a decrease in metabolism from the diet. However, I have found conflicting conclusions from different research on how metabolism works. The apparent reason for the conflicting conclusions is that the body has complex systems for managing metabolism. I found this article in this link helpful: WebMD.
5. The Absence of a Personal Goal
For the long-term, I don’t believe that there is one way of eating that works for everyone. For that matter, the issue is not whether any way of eating works better than another. Instead, the issue is what way of eating can you use to create a healthy long-term lifestyle and reach your physical goals.
If you are a professional cyclist who bikes a hundred miles a day, burning too many calories can become a problem. On the other hand, if you work at a desk 8 – 10 hours a day, burning calories can become a greater challenge. Bodybuilders use high calorie diets of carbohydrates and protein to build muscle mass. Then they change their diet to rip their body of water and fat. Professional athletes use a wide variety of diets. Each diet has the purpose of achieving special needs of athletic performance.
6. Different Bodies, Different Needs
Some of the most fit people I know start their day with a bowl of cereal or a sweet roll. For dinner, they eat pasta, rice, or potatoes. Their intake of carbohydrates is 80% or a higher percentage of their total calories eaten.
However, carbohydrates stimulate my appetite. So, I can’t eat the way these people eat.
7. Focusing on What You Can’t Eat.
For me, eating a daily diet that is 65-70% fat, 20-25% protein, and 10% or less in carbohydrates is something I can do for the long-term. I focus on what I can eat. Sure, I know the ice cream is in the refrigerator and the chocolate is in the pantry. However, I have greater success when I don’t focus on not eating those foods. I try to concentrate on the solution and not the source of the problem.
Perhaps bordering on a state of ketosis and consuming fewer calories, I lose about a pound or two in a week. I say bordering, because I do not use urine strips to test for ketosis.
Following this combination of foods, I lost 34 pounds over the course of a year. Furthermore, I have kept this weight off.
Other people, especially people who are much heavier and, therefore, who burn more calories in carrying their body around, have lost much more weight in the same amount of time.
When I gain a couple of pounds, I don’t beat myself up. I track what I eat with myfitnesspal. Tracking helps me see when I am being honest about the choices I am making in what I eat.