Losing weight sometimes takes experimentation. If you give a diet your best shot and it does not work long term, may be it was not the right one for you, your metabolism, or your situation.Genes, families, your environment – even your friends – influence how, why, what and how much you eat, so don’t get too discouraged or beat yourself up because a diet that “worked for everybody” didn’t pay off for you. Try another, keeping in mind that almost any diet will help you shed pounds – at least for a short time.
Here is a look at three common diet approaches.
- Low fat: does not taste Great… and is less filling
Once the main strategy for losing weight, low fat diets were shoved aside by low-carb frenzy. But, healthy fats can actually promote weight loss, and some fats are good for the heart; eliminating them from the diet can cause problems.
Since fat contains nine calories per gram while carbohydrates contain four, you can theoretically eat more without taking in more calories by cutting back on fatty foods and eating more that are full of carbohydrates, especially water-rich fruits and vegetables. Still such a diet tends to be less filling and flavourful than other diets, which lessens its long-term appeal. And, if the carbs you eat in place of fat are highly processed and rapidly digested, you may be sabotaging your weight loss plan.
- Low carbohydrate: Quick weight loss but long-term safety questions
Eating carbohydrates – especially highly processed ones like white bread and white rice quickly boosts blood sugar, which triggers an outpouring of insulin from the pancreas. The surge of insulin can rapidly drop blood sugar, causing hunger. Low-carb proponents claim that people who eat a lot of carbohydrates take in an extra calories and gain weight. Limiting carbs in favour of protein and fat is suppose to prevent the insulin surge and make you feel full longer.
To make up for the lack of carbohydrates in the diet, the body mobilises its own carbohydrates stores from liver and muscle tissue. In the process the body also mobilises water, meaning that the pounds shed are water weight. The result is rapid weight loss but, after a few months, weight loss tends to slow and reverse, just as happens with other diets.
The American Heart Association cautions people against following the Atkins diet because it is too high in saturated fat and proteins, which can be hard on heart, kidneys and bones. The lack of carb rich fruits and vegetables is also worrisome, because eating these foods tends to lower the risk of stroke, dementia and certain cancers. Most experts believe that the south beach and the less restrictive low-carbohydrate diet offer a more reasonable approach.
- Mediterranean style: Healthy fats and carbs with a big side of fruits and vegetables
Good fats are the monounsaturated fats found in olive oil and other oils like Coconut oil etc,and the polyunsaturated fats found in fish, Canola oil, walnuts and other foods.(Saturated fats and trans fats are the bad guys.) Mediterranean diets tend to have a moderate amount of fat, but most of it comes from healthy fats. The carbohydrates in the Mediterranean-style diet comes from unrefined, fiber-rich sources like whole wheat and beans. These diets are also rich in fruits and vegetables, nuts,seeds and fish with only modest amount of meat and cheese.
People living in the Mediterranean countries have a lower-than-expected rate of heart disease. But the traditional lifestyle in the region also includes lot of physical activity, regular meal patterns, wine, and a good social support. It is hard to know what relative role these different factors play – but there is growing evidence that, in and of itself the diet can reduce cardiovascular risk and the development of Diabetes.
MAKE YOUR OWN
A good diet should provide plenty of choices, relatively few restrictions, and no longer grocery lists of sometimes expensive special foods. It should be good for your heart, bones, brain and colon as it is for your waistline. And, it should be something you sustain for years. Such a diet will not give you a quick fix. But, they can offer you something better- a lifetime of savoury, healthy choices that will be good for all of you, not just a part of you.