Bookstore aisles are budging with every kind of diet book imaginable. The Internet is equally crowded with quick fixes sure to reduce belly fat in the blink of an eye. Ads on television bombard us with rapid weight loss programs, products and pills every five minutes. This makes it incredibly hard to figure out what is real and what is a fad.
Understanding how to spot a fad diet is the first step. Once we understand, we can see the shortcomings and realize that the only way to lose weight and gain health is through regular physical activity and a diet based on whole, real and nutritious food.
The Definition of a Fad Diet
Fad diets make promises that are really lies; rapid weight loss with remarkably little effort and no maintenance. Why would we ever believe that we could drop 4 dress sizes in three weeks by eating one special food and nothing else? Fad diets are not well suited for long-term health or management of weight. Some fad diets are silly while others are downright dangerous and actually promote sickness and disease.
Many fad diets do not address the nutritional necessities of the body and are void in what is needed for both physical as well as mental health. These gimmick diets are also void of the necessary energy to sustain proper functioning of all bodily systems. What is not clearly understood is that it takes energy to burn fat. If you do not give the body the proper fuel, the body will not function properly. That is basic science, nothing more.
Why People Fall for Fad Diets
Desperate people often resort to desperate measures, this we know to be true. Many people looking to lose weight want to do so quickly and with as little physical expense as possible. They don’t want to embark on something that will steal their precious time. Fad diets are attractive, plain and simple, they lure people in like a worm on a hook and capture them with sexy and alluring advertisements and a basket full of fake promises. Some fad diets even promise that you can burn fat and build muscle by doing minimal physical exercise, however, this is not physiologically possible. Exercise plays a vital part in any weight loss and management program.
Fad Diets are Unhealthy
Diets that are very low in calories and do not provide a balance of whole foods can be truly dangerous. These diets, often straight from the stars in Hollywood, can leave you feeling lethargic, moody and perpetually hungry. None of these symptoms are indicative of a healthy body. Diets such as these put tremendous strain on the heart, kidneys and liver and can break down muscle and create chronic health conditions. You may drop a few pounds, but these are mostly water weight pounds, which will quickly return once you finish starving yourself. Ironically, a body starved for nutrients will hang on to all of the fat it has as it is driven into self preservation mode. People in starvation mode often have joint pain, inflammation, heart stress, dry skin, lack of energy, loss of sexual drive and allergies, to name a few. In short, we cannot starve the body of necessary nutrients and expect to be healthy.
Instead of impetuously jumping on the fad diet bandwagon, it is imperative to pay attention to the power that proper nutrition has. In order for the body to achieve a healthy balance and reach optimal weight, it needs a variety of whole foods including fruits, vegetables, healthy fats and protein from tropical oils, nuts and grass fed meat and dairy. Eliminating dangerous foods such as sugar, refined wheat and fast food is a great place to start. Drinking plenty of water daily, managing stress, exercising and getting 7-9 hours of daily sleep are also keys to successful weight management.
Think about eating regular meals avoid over snacking and develop a firm understanding regarding the vitamins and nutrients that the body needs in order to function properly. Once you begin to fuel the body with adequate nutrients, it will reward you with optimal performance and you will look and feel your best.
The human body is amazingly smart, and it will not fall for the fad, no matter how good it seems to you. Stick to providing the body with all it needs to do its job and you will be truly amazed at how it regulates itself. Remember, there is no shortcut to health worth taking, ever.
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