Popular Diets & Why They Work
| Written by Carmen Lai
The word ‘diet’ is so misunderstood in today’s society. For most people, the word is associated with calorie restriction and weight obsession, however the word actually refers to what a person regularly consumes regardless of their calorie focus or weight targets. For example, if you have fast food every day, that’s your diet.
When a person ‘goes on a diet’, it now means a change in the regular. And more often than not, these fad diets often lead to weight loss, but are usually not sustainable. Here are a few examples of popular diets.
This is one of the famous diets created by Dr. Robert Atkins who suggested that losing weight requires a low-carbohydrate diet. The argument for this diet is that consuming large amounts of refined carbohydrates will lead to a rapid rise in insulin levels, and subsequently a rapid fall. As a result, most people on the Atkins diet consume less carbs and a higher portion of proteins than the average do. Many celebrities have endorsed this programme including both Sharon Osbourne and Kim Kardashian. The Atkins diet is certainly good for those who need to lose a lot of weight, and it is good for those who hate calorie counting. However, like any other diet, the challenge is in reaching and sustaining your ideal weight. What makes this diet ironic is that Dr. Robert Atkins was clinically obese when he passed away, according to a pathology report.
The Zone Diet
The objective of the Zone Diet is to achieve a nutritional balance of 40% carbohydrates, 30% fats, and 30% protein each time a person consumes a meal. The focus is similar to the Atkins diet with the intention of controlling insulin levels. The Zone Diet was founded 30 or more years ago by Dr. Barry Sears who believed that following this percentage will help you shed excess weight, reduce the risk of chronic disease and see an overall improvement in both mental and physical performance. Indeed, the Zone diet requires a change in lifestyle and results will be more significant if practiced in the long-term. This requires discipline, as you need to count calories, and can also be tough for those who love their white-flour carbs and sweets and will have to go without. Popular celebrities who advocate this programme include Sarah Jessica Parker, Demi Moore, Sandra Bullock, Jennifer Aniston, to name a few.
The Vegetarian Diet
It cannot be denied that the general population should consume more vegetables and fibre. There is a plethora of health benefits for following a vegetarian diet, which includes reduced probability of heart disease, diabetes and certain types of cancers. Nevertheless, it should be noted that some vegetarians are overly dependent on processed foods, which may consists of food choices that are high in calories, sugar, fat and sodium. Pamela Anderson, Ellen DeGeneres and Paul McCartney are just a few celebrities who follow the vegetarian diet.
The Vegan Diet
Vegetarian and vegan diets share similar food choices. Nevertheless, an important aspect that makes the vegan diet stand out is the focus on ethics. Being a vegan does not only mean having no meat, eggs and dairy products, but also living a life that excludes all forms of animal cruelty. One needs to have strong values that all animals deserve a life free from harm in order to adopt a successful vegan diet. Some celebrities who are part of the vegan community consist of Ellen Page, Alicia Silverstone and Ariana Grande.
In the end, there is no one magic formula to losing weight. Being healthy is all about lifestyle. A healthy diet means that you’re selecting options that are more nutritious for your body and the amount you decide to put in it. Being mindful of what you eat is important but it certainly does not mean you would need to have a restrictive or obsessive attitude. Eat healthy, be healthy.