A Short Review of Current Weight Loss Diets

Rob Esmund By Rob Esmund, 9th Jul 2010 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/25k0ghdt/
Posted in Wikinut>Health>Diet & Nutrition

There are so many different weight loss diets promoted these days that it can be difficult to choose between them. This article is an attempt to describe and review some of these popular diets.

How to lose weight

If you are going to lose weight you will need almost certainly to reduce your calorie input one way or another and it probably does not matter too much if you reduce fat intake or carbohydrate intake, or both, so long as your diet is reasonably varied in order that you get all necessary nutrients. A certain amount of fat is required by the body for normal function, and, some vitamins and minerals are fat soluble and therefore some fat in the diet is necessary for them to be absorbed..
Carbohydrates, on the other hand are a lot less necessary, and some might say not necessary at all, at least not in refined form. Refined carbohydrates are notorious for causing rapid blood sugar spikes that can put a strain on the body's insulin/glucose regulatory system. If you are going to eat some carbohydrate as most of us do, then it's best to eat it in the form of natural foods such as fruit, vegetables, nuts and beans, rather than processed foods.

What are the various most common diets?

Some of the most popular are listed below:
• Low fat diets such as Rosemary Conley
The Rosemary Conley diet is nutritionally sound in that it encourages the consumption of healthy foods such as lean meat and fish, fruit and vegetables, wholemeal bread and some dairy products whilst disallowing unhealthy foods such as cakes, biscuits, fried chips and pies. It might not actually lose you much weight unless you confine yourself to small portions and take plenty of exercise. It is however, a healthy way to diet, and weight loss should be achieved gradually over time, which is really the best way.
• Atkins Diet
Again this approach is perfectly reasonable and works for many. You can eat a lot of different foods that might be thought fatty, but it's still best to eat healthy fats, plus rather more fish and nuts than meat, and you still need to eat fruit and vegetables, which although carbohydrate based, are good carbohydrates because they are low GI, i.e. low in calories and high in fibre.
• The South Beach Diet.
This is a sensible diet which favours low fat and low carbohydrate intake. It advocates the natural approach to eating, avoiding too much in the way of processed foods. It might however be a little too restrictive for some on a long term basis, and therefore difficult to adhere to
• The Paleo or Caveman Diet
This focuses on natural foods also, such as fish, vegetables, lean meat, roots and nuts. It does not allow consumption of salt, refined sugars, dairy products, grains or oils. This again, although healthy enough is much too restrictive for most.
• Fat Loss For Idiots
This diet plan although popular, does not seem to adequately explain how weight loss is to be achieved. It talks about “calorie shifting” which “tricks” the body to burn fat. Substituting one type of calorie food for another does not seem in itself sufficient to alter the body's metabolism as far as one can see. The body will consume calories in whatever form they are presented. A calorie reduction is necessary to lose weight.
• The Zone Diet
This is a balanced nutrition approach that supposedly controls the hormones in your body, and keeps them within the “Zone”. It's a sensible diet that encourages eating plenty of fish and fish oils to get the important omega 3s, together with a balanced diet of about 40% carbohydrates, 30% fat, and 30% protein. This is a perfectly good diet for anyone but probably needs to be combined with exercise to actually lose significant weight.
• Strip That Fat
This diet plan does its best to rubbish all the fad diets and the weight loss gimmicks. It points out that unrealistic goals and unsustainable diets are the reason that most people fail to lose weight. This is a sensible plan based on sound principles and includes an ongoing program. It centres on good nutrition and healthy eating habits, showing what's good to eat and what is not. It is not an extreme low fat or low carbohydrate diet, and as such is suitable for virtually anybody and should be effective because of the emphasis on motivation and variety in the diet.

Tags

Diets, Diets Review, Weight Loss, Weight Loss Diets, Weight Loss Review

Meet the author

author avatar Rob Esmund
I am a retired UK health professional with interests in health, nutrition, and weight-loss

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