Why restrictive and unbalanced diets don't work and how they actually contribute to poor health, a slower metabolism, energy reduction, and weight gain.
Americans shell out over $58 billion a year on weight loss products. With all this money being spent, are we any leaner? NO. In fact 67% of the American population is overweight or obese and childhood obesity is on the rise, with one out of three kids considered overweight or obese. So what is the problem?
Other than the obvious diet pitfalls of overeating, junk food consumption and lack of exercise, there is another culprit — the never-ending quest to find a quick-fix solution to our health and fitness woes. We seek out and find diet programs and products that are marketed today as "miracles" that are basically gimmicks full of false promises, magic potions, and misleading propaganda. Most of these counter-productive systems result in yo-yo dieting and can be quite dangerous.
There is no quick fix for fat loss, optimal health, and longevity, but the good news is that there is a way. You don’t have to starve or deprive yourself to lose weight! The next time you decide to go on a weight-loss diet program, open our eyes and spot the quick-fix diets. Don't believe the hype; think twice before you waste your time, money, health, and sanity. No sensible diet program will ever compromise your physical or mental health for the sake of looking good.
Some commonly used formulas for weight loss:
- Liquid diets Low-calorie diets
- High-protein, low or no-carbohydrate, high-fat diets
- Low-protein, high-carbohydrate, no-fat diets
- "One type of food" diets
- Processed, packaged, and man-made food diets
Bottom line on quick-fix diet programs: restrictive and unbalanced diets don't work––they actually contribute to poor health, a slower metabolism, energy reduction, and weight gain.
#1 - Poor Health
Since most quick-fix diets restrict calories or do not allocate the proper nutrient ratio (protein, carbohydrates, and fat), and even completely eliminate important vitamins, minerals, and fiber, they put you at a nutritional risk. Another problem is that if you consume too much of any nutrient like protein, it can put undue stress on your kidneys and other internal organs. And if you consume excessive man-made food products, you are at risk of the perils of excessive amounts of additives and preservatives. All of these scenarios set the stage for a number of health problems during your diet, in the immediate future, and further down the line.
#2 - Deception and Dehydration
Many quick-fix diets promote low-carbohydrate intake, of which when you drop carbohydrates in your diet, you will lose weight. However, most of the weight lost in this manner consists only of glycogen and water. The problem with this type of weight loss is that you are deceived into believing that you are losing fat. In reality, once carbohydrate intake resumes (even the good carbs) and the water weight and glycogen are restored, you will mistakenly believe that you've regained the fat back.
Since the human body is over 60% water, this kind of diet and weight-loss result has a more serious consequence; it may lead to dehydration. Dehydration can cause fatigue, crankiness, stiff joints, headaches, nausea, aches, electrolyte imbalances, and much more. Severe dehydration can cause seizures, coma, or even death.
#3 - LBM (lean body mass)
Reduction Reduction in muscle mass is a common result of any type of low-calorie, low- carbohydrate, or starvation program. In fact, as muscle mass is lost, metabolism slows––the opposite of what the goal should be of any credible diet program. A daily intake of less than 1000 calories is considered starvation, and the human body will automatically try to salvage body fat just for survival.
#4 - Decrease in Energy
When calories are restricted, especially carbohydrates, the body's main source of energy is limited. This energy is needed for the body and the brain to function properly. Otherwise, you'll begin to feel tired, cranky, and mentally slow. You also will not have the energy you need to be active and exercise. Calories do so much for your body-–they provide energy, life, vitality, and so much more.
#5 - Body Fat increases
Any type of restrictive or unbalanced diet is a recipe for failure. The hype behind quick-fix diets is often unsubstantiated, based on gimmicks and full of false promises. They offer ways to lose weight fast with no regard for health and safety; the results will always be questionable. And after trying a quick-fix diet program, any attempt to resume normal, proper eating patterns will often lead you to regain more weight than you lost. Compounding the problem, regaining weight that you worked so hard to lose creates desperation, which often causes many to seek another quick fix. This process eventually leads to chronic yo-yo dieting, which is a vicious, unhealthy, frustrating, expensive, and dangerous cycle.
There is a rise in sound (proper) diet programs that will help you lose weight and gain health. There are now widely accepted, well-researched nutritional principles found in most well respected, leading diet programs, ones that are not marketed as miracles, that don’t offer quick-fix solutions, but truly provide hope, not hype!
Most fitness experts, nutritionists, diet gurus, and well-informed doctors agree that we should consume clean and wholesome foods and liquids to attain and maintain low body fat and vibrant health. We should eliminate junk food, fast food, fried food, and highly processed food. The real debate begins over how many calories we should consume each day and the nutrient ratio, which can be somewhat complicated and should be calculated based on your lean body mass, activity level, gender, age, goals and other variables.
The other debate exists over whether it is better to be a vegetarian or vegan, or not––each providing plusses and negatives to the health and wellness equation. Most also agree that fat loss is where it's at, not just weight loss, that real and lasting weight-loss results don't happen overnight, and getting fit is best accomplished when you include exercise. According to Web MD, "proven weight-management strategies include a balanced diet with reduced calories with a regular exercise regimen." The master key to low body fat, vibrant health, and longevity is not found in a miracle program or product (including diet pills and potions) but a lifestyle of the proper diet and exercise regimen!
First on Blogcritics: Sci/Tech Dieting on Miracles: Quick-Fix Diet Solutions
Author: Christine Lakatos — Published: Nov 19, 2009 at 5:00 pm
More Sci/Tech articles...