Monday, January 17, 2011
Fad diets surround us daily, from low-carb, no-carb, low-fat, no-fat, cabbage soup, juicing, low-calorie, baby food, raw, and countless others. We see them on T.V., the internet, newspapers, and magazines.
How can we not get a little distracted by these diets? Fad diets promise to help you shed pounds fast, lose inches quick, get lean in record time, be super fit, and look like a celebrity! How can you resist not wanting to know more, or even try them?
These types of diets are usually very short-term, highly unhealthy, and can even be damaging to your body. They can be severely calorie restrictive, lacking important food groups, too high in bad fats, too low in good fats, lacking in nutrients, and just down right dangerous.
Who would want to eat cabbage soup everyday, regardless of how many inches you may lose in a week? Besides infants, no one should be using baby food as a source of nutrition. Does only consuming bacon, eggs, lunch meat, cheese, chicken breasts, and pork chops sound like a healthy thing to do? Absolutely not.
No fad diet kept long term will lead to good or better health. Will you lose weight on most fad diets? Most likely yes. Let's take a look at why you lose weight, and what kind of "weight" you are actually losing. When not consuming the proper nutrition and literally "starving" your body, it sends your body into a shock state. When beginning a quick fix diet, your body may shed weight but what you are really losing is muscle and water. As your body tries to compensate for lack of nutrients it takes from where it can (your muscles, brain, etc) and stores any fat you consume to protect from later starvation. In the end you become hungry, irritable, fatigued, dehydrated, memory loss, and experience signs of depression.
For example: depriving your body of complex carbohydrates such as whole grains, beans, fruits and vegetables will set your kidneys into over-drive and your colon into sleep mode. Where will you be getting your very important vitamins, minerals, and fiber from? How will your body cope will all that animal protein, cholesterol, and saturated fat? Can you picture how hard your heart has to work to support this?
Yes, short term you might lose weight, but at what cost?
A good, healthy, balanced diet will yield weight loss, but you will also be properly fueling your body. It could take longer than using an unhealthy fad diet, but think of it this way; it didn't take you 2 weeks to gain the excess weight, it shouldn't take you 2 weeks to take it off. This is not a "diet" but a way of life.
Remember that good health is priceless!