When you hear the word diet, what comes to your mind? Currently, about 45 million people on diets, on any given day in the US.
Statistics have shown for decades that 95% of all dieters will regain the weight they lose within one year! That statistic alone tells us that diets are flawed. Of that 95%, about two thirds will gain more weight than they started out at which, begins the vicious restrict/binge, yo-yo dieting cycle. Research shows that weight cycling (losing weight, gaining weight, repeat) is actually more harmful to health than just staying at a higher weight.
A review of over 30 studies on diets concluded that dieting is actually a predictor of weight gain! (*)
The Oxford Living Dictionaries says a diet is, “A special course of food to which a person restricts themselves, either to lose weight or for medical reasons.”
There are a few real reasons why I believe “diets” don’t work, and that there is a better way.
Here are 5 Reasons Why Diets Don’t Work:
The Definition of “Diets” Speaks of Limitations and Restrictions.
That is the biggest reason diets per se do not work. The goal of a diet is to get to a healthier weight and to maintain it long term. However, restrictive diets are impossible to maintain long-term. You can force yourself to do anything for 2 weeks but that isn’t long enough to make a real difference.
Just about any diet you may try will cause you to lose weight temporarily. However, making lasting, healthy changes you can incorporate into your daily life is what you really want and need, not a temporary, restrictive diet. They are not sustainable because there is no lifestyle change.
Most Diets Focus on Amounts.
Whether it’s calories or macros, they overlook the importance of the quality of the food you eat. The question is not so much whether you cut fat or carbs or increase protein or fiber, but that you choose the highest quality of whatever foods you eat. No matter how much you restrict calories, eating inflammatory foods like those that contain gluten, dairy or sugar, or those you are sensitive to, will sabotage your results. Being aware of food sensitivities and avoiding those trigger foods becomes very important.
Your Focus Won’t Be on the Real Issues.
You can’t just focus on what foods you eat and how much while overlooking deep-rooted beliefs, patterns, and behaviors that inform your food choices and eating habits in the first place. Your mindset, whether you are conscious of it or not, is the key to your relationship with food and your body. This is why in my Today’s the Day Plan, I address spirit, soul, and body, and often use Christian EFT to address some of the underlying issues that may be hindering clients. Rather than thinking about certain foods as your enemy, consider redefining what you put in your body as nourishment or fuel.
All of Our Bodies Are Different.
We are all unique, one-of-a-kind creations, and that includes metabolically. So, while one person may do well eating a vegan diet, it may not be right for you. Your friend may lose weight effortlessly on a keto diet, but you may not feel your best and don’t see the same results. It doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with you, it just means you have to find the specific fuel blend that works best for you.
Diets for Purchase Stop Working if You Stop Using Them.
Some of the most popular diet plans you see advertised on TV include their own diet foods you must purchase. If you can put that food into a package, it is not “real” food, in the best sense of the word. Those foods may help you drop a few pounds, but unless you continue to purchase them, chances are you will slip right back into your old habits that got you overweight in the first place. Choosing what I term real, high-quality, one-ingredient foods, and creating your meals from those is the easiest, healthiest, and most effective way to release weight and keep it off.
Finding what I call the right fuel blend for you and making lifestyle changes is the best way to get to a healthy weight and maintain it long-term.
Wishing you healthy eating for a lifetime, without the use of diets!