'Fad Diets' - Why you should avoid them at all cost!

As human beings we endeavour to find a ‘quick fix’ for weight loss. From ‘healthy eating plans’, to shake replacements, the market is inundated with solutions to help you lose weight fast. I’m not denying that some of these plans will help you shed the pounds - but I strongly disagree with the concept of these and here’s why;

Losing weight isn’t always healthy! We are lead to believe that if we are over weight then we are unhealthy and should lose weight. Whilst it’s true that those over a certain boundary are at more health risks, losing the wrong kind of weight can also be detrimental. Many diets document progress through the amount of weight lost. Through dieting alone there comes a time when the weight being lost is no longer fat, but muscle. Muscle mass is essential for healthy body function - and reducing this mass is not only putting your health at risk, but will also not make you look any slimmer.

Big losses are usually made in the first few weeks of starting one of these diets. This motivates you to stay on bored as you know they progress is possible - but what isn’t often explained that a lot of this is water weight. Again something that isn’t an ideal loss. Water is essential for the body to function and a large loss like this simply means that the body is more dehydrated than it previously was. If you want to test this for yourself, weigh yourself before and after a sweaty exercise session. Often you will have lost a couple of pound - something which is highly unlikely over such a short space of time! Instead, it’s simply dehydration at it best!

Following on from that Many ‘healthy eating plans’ market themselves as a lifestyle change towards a healthier life, yet very few of them require any exercise to take place. Whilst eating healthy is a step in the right direction, regular exercise is also essential to support your heart and body.

The ‘healthy eating’ which is promoted in these diets also allows for the consumption of a large amount of unhealthy products. They place focus on using ‘low fat’, ‘low calorie’ products which are often packed with sugar. In practice, it is not fat which should be avoided but in fact sugar as it is far more like to translate to body fat. Many of these ‘healthy eating plans’ sell lines of their own products which are high is sugar and salt, with some well known shakes containing over 3 times the recommended daily allowance of sugar per shake! Do you really want to be running on sugar alone!?

Following on from the point above, many fad diets follow the ‘no food is off limits’ rule. Whilst I’m one who’s totally against shaming any food as you should never feel guilt for fuelling your body - there should still be clear moderation where certain items are concerned. Technically with many diets in the market, you would be well within the rules to survive on candy bars alone (particularly the ones made by the companies themselves). Again meaning your main source of energy would be sugar.

Finally, it’s important to remember that the companies running these ‘diets’ are businesses. Whilst it would appear that their main purpose is to help you lose weight - they are also in it to capitalise on your journey. Whether this is to ensure you don’t lose quite enough to hit target or, become dependant on your products - they never want to make you so happy with your body that you can do it alone!!

As someone who has tried a wide range of the diet sout there, I’ve never felt more satisfied and content than when I’ve just focused on clean eating and exercising. I now eat about 3000 calories a day, drink 4 litres of water, workout 3/4 times a week and as a result I wear a size 8/10 and have more energy than ever before. So, I strongly urge anyone on one of these diets to look at the amount of sugar and salt you are consuming, the amount of exercise you are required to do and the type of weight you are losing and question whether it really is all too good to be true!?

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