How To Find the Best Diet for Weight Loss

by Natalie on April 10, 2014

diets.jpgHave you ever known someone who was on a wacky diet? I sure have.

Back when I was in middle school (circa 1995) the Atkins diet was HUGE. I remember going over to my friend’s house and opening her fridge only to find a bunch of meat, cheese, and Diet Rite. She explained to me how her mom was following the Atkins diet and that she ate bacon and cheese for breakfast.

Now this was long before I ever signed on to be a dietitian, but something inside told me that this type of diet couldn’t be healthy.

We don’t like to admit it, but we usually know when something just doesn’t seem right about a diet. Yes, most of us know when something is healthy or not. The problem is that the result can be so attractive, in this case, weight loss, that we’ll do just about anything to get it.

That’s why crazy diets like Atkins are so successful – they work. But it’s usually at the expense of your health. Sort of like getting rich from robbing a bank.

The good news is that there are healthy diets out there! I’m gonna tell you how to find one of the right now.

6 Qualities of Healthy Diets

  1. The diet emphasizes whole foods. For example, you’re eating actual food for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Not specialized shakes, bars, or “cookies”.
  2. Entire food groups are not eliminated. For example, a style of eating actually exists called “fruititarian” in which a person only subsides on fruits and nuts. When you eliminate too many food groups, it can be difficult to deliver the type of nutrition your body needs to thrive.
  3. The diet was created by a credible person. You’ll want to investigate the person behind the diet. What’s their background? Are they qualified to provide diet advice? Look beyond credentials. Does what they’re promoting actually make good sense? Most of us inherently know when something feels right or wrong.
  4. Ask yourself if the diet teaches you how to succeed beyond the plan. To say it more plainly, you want to know if the diet will last long-term. I have known many people who have been successful on the Weight Watchers point system. The weakness I see comes when they are done with the program. I find that most people don’t know how to translate the points into real life eating. The points have not taught them anything about good nutrition or real behavior change.
  5. Treats are allowed on the plan. Constant deprivation makes you want something even more. So when the diet is over, you will want to go raid Panera’s pastry case. Treats such as dessert or french fries are a normal part of life. If you don’t learn how to incorporate them in a healthy way, you will never be successful.
  6. Accountability is provided. The diet is administered to you by a qualified person and you receive frequent follow-up. You will be most successful if you have someone to check in with regularly on your journey.

Alright, time to get down to business. If you’re on the hunt for a diet, tell me how you will use this information to seek out a healthy one by leaving a comment below.

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