Every year, thousands of Americans set goals or New Year’s resolutions, and often weight loss is the top priority for many people. In 2017, as always, people will attempt to get slimmer with a weight loss diet and exercise routine.
Many people really want to know how to lose weight. Some of these resolutions will be abandoned before Valentine’s Day; however, others will stick with the routine and diet long enough to see results. Let’s take a look at the most popular weight loss diets that people will likely be trying this year.
- The Paleo Diet: The Paleo diet has trended upwards in recent years. Although referred to as a diet, Paleo is more of a lifestyle that includes meat from grass-fed, pasture-raised, and organic animals or sustainable, wild-caught seafood; lots of vegetables; some fruit; nuts and seeds; and quality fats like coconut oil, ghee, duck fat, olive oil, and avocado oil. The diet also eliminates all whole grains, refined grains, packaged snacks, dairy products, sweeteners, and beverages like beer, soda, and coffee. It is often considered a high-protein and low-carb diet with the carbs mostly coming from some fruits and vegetables.
- The 5:2 Diet: The 5:2 diet plan is not only geared for weight loss, but it also helps with brain function and adds years to your overall lifespan. People can eat their normal diet for five days every week, with clean eating recommended. On the other two days, the person fasts. In other words, there is no eating. Although restrictive diets can help someone lose body fat, improve insulin resistance, and reduce the risk of chronic diseases, skipping meals can also lead the headaches, dehydration, and dizziness.
- The Blue Zone Diet: The Blue Zone diet is a simple diet that was inspired by people who lived to be over 100 years old. The diet avoids processed, fried, and greasy foods, while including beans and plants. If a person decides to eat meat, only small portions of three to four ounces should be consumed. The smallest meal of the day should be eaten in the late afternoon or early evening. People on the diet should stop eating when they feel 80% full. Alcohol should be consumed in moderation. This means only one to two drinks should be consumed daily.
- The Dukan Diet: The Dukan diet is a four-phase diet that is similar to the Paleo diet plan due to the high amount of protein and low volume of carbohydrates. People on the Dukan diet can consume as much as they want when the rules of the program are followed. The first phase of the diet includes lean protein sources like turkey, fish, chicken, and eggs; however, fats and vegetables are not included. Carbs, fruit, and vegetables are later reintroduced to the diet in the other stages of program. Approximately two pounds can reportedly be lost per week when the Dukan diet plan is followed exactly. Although the diet is not nutritionally balanced, it can help with quick weight loss.
- The 5:5:5 Diet: The 5:5:5 diet is designed by United Kingdom nutritionist Angela Dowden, and it is billed as the healthiest and easiest way to a slimmer figure. It is a new diet that focuses on eating regular meals five times daily, with the aim of helping people lose as many as five pounds in a two-week period. The diet also suggests that people consume five 80 g portions of vegetables and fruit daily, including high-fiber greens that are low in carbs. A typical day on the diet includes a slice of kiwi fruit with fat-free yogurt and a handful of blueberries for breakfast; a salad with a poached salmon fillet and tzatziki for lunch; and lamb chops, couscous, and vegetables for dinner. Snacks include nuts, raisins, or a banana. The participants must avoid sugary drinks, refrain from snacking too close to meal times, and eat modest portion sizes.
- Weight Watchers: Weight Watchers is a diet plan where members receive meal plans and have access to a coach who helps the participant track weight loss, fitness, and nutrition goals. Foods are also assigned a points value based on calories, saturated fat, sugar, and protein. By spending points within their budget, people will be nudged towards healthier choices, which leads to results. The problem here is that the diet allows for processed foods as long as they meet the criteria of the program. Any way you look at it, processed foods are detrimental for long-term health.
Why Lifestyle Is Better than a Diet
It is important to remember that for any diet to truly have long-lasting effects, it must become a lifestyle. After all, it is very easy to revert to old ways of thinking, and before you know it all the hard work you’ve put in has been undone.
In general, people shouldn’t diet. Instead, they should adopt a healthy lifestyle that is free of dairy and other processed foods, and is also low in sugar. Many high-sugar foods increase your blood sugar, and the sugar is stored as fat in the body. This makes weight loss increasingly difficult for those who decide to eat a side salad with their sandwich instead of forgoing the bread entirely.
Weight loss can be a challenge no matter what diet you try. It is a good idea to have a support group that can make your transition to a healthier lifestyle a lot more manageable.
Williams, J., “How to Diet in 2017: Lose Weight in the New Year with These Top 5 Tips,” International Business Times web site, January 1, 2017; http://www.ibtimes.com/how-diet-2017-lose-weight-new-year-these-top-5-tips-2467775.
Rahman, K., “Could eating FIVE times a day be the key to losing weight? The ‘easiest’ weight loss plan on the block is the 5:5:5 diet…so what is it and could it help you?” Daily Mail web site, January 9, 2017; http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-4100354/Could-eating-FIVE-times-day-key-losing-weight-easiest-weight-loss-plan-block-5-5-5-diet-help-you.html.