All Diets Work- so how do you find the right one?
Yes, the title is correct. All diets work- if you follow them. If you want to lose weight, you need to reduce your calories so that you are consuming less than you are using, aka going on a diet. There are other factors, such as sleep, stress, individual metabolic conditions, etc, but in general, if you reduce your calories, you will lose weight. The question is, can you do it long term? Is it a sustainable way of eating that you want to keep up? And most importantly- is it healthy?
You may have heard the story of a man who lost weight eating a Big Mac every day. Why? Because that was all he ate so he therefore reduced his calories. Is it sustainable? Maybe, if you like that type of "food". Is it healthy? No, for so many reasons.
There are a lot of people that go on a Whole 30 and lose weight. Why? Most likely they are consuming less calories by eliminating alcohol and processed foods. Is it sustainable? For many people yes. But when you start adding back Paleo desserts filled with almond butter and honey, and wine and tequila (because they are Paleo, right?) it's easy to over eat. Is it healthy? Yes- it focuses on real food.
Then there's Keto, Weight Watchers, Bikini Body diets in magazines, the Isagenix 30 day system, and so many others. There are many similarities, and many differences which is why it gets so complicated. Do you go high fat on Keto, or low fat like a bikini competitor? Do you eat small meals every 2-3 hours, or intermittent fast and only eat in a six hour window? Do you eat clean like Paleo or whatever you want as long as it fits your macros?
There is no one right way to eat, but here are a few guidelines to help you find what works for you.
1. Eat to be healthy, not just lose weight. The majority of what you eat should be food- things that grew/were alive. Vegetables and fruits are high in micronutrients that your body needs and will fill you up without a lot of calories. You don't need to put a label on how you are eating, just focus on getting quality food in your body.
2. Pick a way of eating that you want to continue and that works with your schedule. A diet will be a little stricter than how you normally eat, but shouldn't be a drastic change. You want to implement lasting habits that will keep you healthy and keep the weight off.
3. Stick with something long enough to see results, at least 30 days. Your weight will fluctuate so give it time before you make adjustments. We all want a quick fix, but slow and steady is the way to go when it comes to keeping the weight off.
4. Remember that everyone is different and think about more than the scale. Do you have enough energy for your workouts? How are you sleeping? How is your skin? Again, we aren't just going for weight loss, you want to feel good! If you do intense exercise, you may need more carbs. If you have food allergies/sensitivities, you may need to eliminate certain items.
So to summarize, eat real food in the amount that supports your activity level and goals. :) Calculate your macros (see this video if you need help https://youtu.be/PLYMQ3g9uL0 ) and plan your meals based on what works for you.
If you need additional help or support, just reach out!