Which Diet Is Best For Losing Weight?
Diets manipulate calories and/or macro-nutrients
Calories are a measure of the energy in your food.
If you eat more calories than you burn, your body is likely to hold onto those extras and store them in undesirable places like the belly, hips and thighs.
Macro-nutrients are a name given to the 3 major nutrients found in food.
Fat, Carbs, and Protein.
Our bodies react differently to these 3 nutrients.
In fact, one of the coolest discoveries in nutrition has been that these nutrients can actually effect whether or not our bodies hold onto extra calories that we eat as tightly as they can or if they let some of them go easier.
Most strict diets are a marketing ploy
Marketing is all about finding a reason why your product is different (and better) than all of the other products out there.
People have been living healthy, naturally slender lives without most of these diets.
But it’s hard to sell a book or supplement on that fact.
So, to make money, new diets have to be created and sold as the exclusive “secret” to ridding the world of fat gain.
Dieting can ruin your metabolism
The truth is, anytime you mess with calories and macro-nutrients, you’re going to effect your body.
And this can induce weight loss.
But often the repercussions can wreak havoc on your metabolism.
That means that eventually the weight will come back on with a vengeance.
If it’s happened to you, don’t worry.
Your metabolism can be readjusted by following a proper eating and workout strategy.
Some popular diets
There’s far too long of a list to go over them all here, but I’ll touch on some of the major ones today.
In essence, I love the Paleo diet.
It’s about eating the way your ancestors ate, the way that you were designed to eat.
The focus is on vegetables and healthy meats.
And since grains are a fairly recent food for our species, it limits those.
The only downside is that I’ve seen people use the Paleo diet to preach an extremely low carb diet or to focus too much on meat and not balance it out with vegetables.
Sometimes people choose this option for moral reasons.
But as far as weight loss goes, this type of diet can be very effective as well.
However, it can also be a lot of work to make sure that you’re getting a healthy amount of calories throughout your day.
I’ve also seen people splurge on foods that won’t help you lose weight–like white bread and even candy–while still thinking that they’re healthy because they don’t eat meat.
Low Calorie–> Counting Calories
This is one of the most popular methods for weight loss.
It’s simple in that it basically says “Calories in needs to be less than calories out.”
This can be very effective for weight loss.
The things to be cautious of with this diet, though, is that doesn’t take into account the kinds of calories you’re getting.
True, you can eat ho-ho’s all day and still remain under your calorie restrictions.
But it’s not going to help you have the energy or health you want.
And counting calories can be tedious, making it hard to stick to.
I’m throwing this one in the mix because I followed it for a short time in order to cut weight for a boxing match.
Basically, it involves having mostly low carbs each day, but a couple times a week you actually eat a lot of carbs.
The idea is to try to trick your body into burning fat faster.
This type of diet, if carried on for too long, can actually be unhealthy.
And it takes a lot of discipline–especially on high-carb days when you want to eat every pastry in sight.
Also, a lot of the weight you lose cutting carbs is just water weight, which comes back on the moment you quit the diet.
An omnivore is a species that can pretty much survive well off of any type of food.
And that’s us.
All diets can work
With that in mind, finding a diet that matches your lifestyle is the best route to go if you choose to follow one.
And some diets will work better for some people than for others.
Or you can let go of the dieting mentality and try another strategy.
The key to weight loss without Dieting is Creating Habits
This is the method I most prefer, because it’s easier to maintain and it turns food into a positive aspect of life instead of an evil demon that wants to make you fat.
By focusing on creating healthy habits, you’re setting up your life to where healthy eating is just a natural part of it.
You don’t have to think about it.
No food is off limits.
There are several healthy habits you can start putting in place today that will burn fat and keep it off for the long haul.
I’m including this diet under Healthy Habits instead of the Diets section because I think it’s a great way to get started developing the habit of healthy eating.
In what I call the SuperFood Diet, you make a list of 20-25 foods that you enjoy and that are healthy and you make a game out of making sure that you get at least 3 servings of each every week.
I actually used to keep a list on my fridge, and I’d check them off as I ate them throughout the week.
This forces you to come up with new recipes and ways to eat as many healthy foods as you can.
And you can still eat other things while you’re following it.
For instance, you might make a salad using 3-4 of the ingredients, but then have a cookie on the side.
You’ll be eating enough healthy foods that you won’t have a lot of room for junk foods.
Granted, if you really tried, you could figure out a way to still eat a lot of junk, so some discipline is still required.
Make sure that you’re still getting plenty of each of the macro-nutrients so that your diet is balanced.
There are no special SuperFoods, so anything healthy can fit the term.
If you want to see what my list looked like, you can watch a video I made about my “25 Superfood Diet” here.
Finding a meal plan can help you prepare easily
Or you can take away most of the work of figuring out what to eat by just Googling “2,000 Calorie Meal Plan” (or whatever number you want) and just copying one that you find.
Obviously, this can lead to mixed results as far as healthy eating and delicious meals go.
But there are enough out there that it shouldn’t take long to find one you like.
If you’re not sure how many calories you should be eating, here’s a quick way to calculate a good number for you.