Why You Shouldn't Try Fad Diets to Manage Your Weight

Why You Shouldn't Try Fad Diets to Manage Your Weight

If you’re among nearly three-quarters of US adults struggling with their weight, you understand the temptation of the latest fad diet to help shed the extra pounds. But these diets don’t usually help you maintain any weight loss you experience — and some are dangerous for your health. 

At Grassroots Healthcare in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Dr. Melita Tate and our healthcare team understand the importance of managing your weight and taking control of your health. Our team uses an integrated approach to weight management, taking your personal preferences, overall health, and lifestyle factors into account.

Keep reading to learn why you shouldn’t try fad diets to manage your weight and the ways we can help you achieve your weight-loss goals.  

The problems with fad diets

Every year, 50% of Americans who try to lose weight use fad diets to help them shed pounds. Unfortunately, these diets don’t work for sustained, long-term weight loss. 

What is a fad diet? Some of the telltale signs include a promise of “fast and easy” weight loss, not requiring exercise or lifestyle changes, heavy reliance on one food or special supplements, claiming foods need to be combined in certain ways, eliminating “bad” foods, or promoting meal replacements. 

People are drawn to them because, in the short term, you do lose weight following a fad diet. But these diets aren’t sustainable, and as soon as you stop following the diet, the weight comes back — often more than you lost initially. 

This causes “yo-yo” dieting, or weight cycling, where your weight goes up and down. It also triggers negative emotions and mental health issues related to food, including disappointment, guilt, stress, anxiety, depression, and low self-esteem. 

Research shows weight cycling also increases your risk of developing cardiovascular health issues. Studies show that those with the greatest fluctuations in their weight were 85% more likely to have a cardiovascular event and a 124% risk of death.    

A better way to managing weight

The healthiest approach to managing your weight combines a healthy diet and exercise. The right dietary changes lowers your overall caloric intake while boosting your nutrition. And regular exercise not only helps you burn calories, studies show it helps you keep off excess pounds.

A healthy diet

To lose one pound a week, you need to have a 3550 calorie deficit. That means every day, you need to eat about 500 calories less. But not all calories are created equal, as it’s important to take into account nutritional value.

Processed foods are generally high in calories and low on the nutrients your body needs for good health. As a result, you might eat enough calories with processed foods, but your body will continue to send signals to keep eating to get the nutrients it needs. 

Researchers call this the “hunger trap,” making it easy to eat too many calories. In fact, recent studies discovered a diet high in processed foods increases your daily calories by about 500 calories per day — that’s a pound a week! 

Eliminating processed foods and selecting healthy, whole foods instead helps you eat fewer calories and boosts your intake of essential nutrients. Plus, research shows diets high in healthy nutrients helps control your appetite, making you have less cravings and eat less.   

Regular exercise

It’s hard to lose weight using exercise alone since to lose one pound, you have to burn at least 3500 calories. The average person burns about 100 calories for every mile they walk, jog, or run. 

That means to lose one pound each week, you’d need to cover five miles a day. Even if you walk, jog, or run five miles each day to lose weight, you couldn’t “eat back” the calories you burned. 

That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t exercise to help lose weight. Exercise not only burns calories, but it also boosts your metabolism and keeps your body in excellent shape to help prevent or manage many health conditions.  

How professional weight management can help

If you’ve tried losing weight but haven’t been successful, it’s time to talk to a team member at Grassroots Healthcare. Our experts get to the root of your weight-loss struggle and rule out underlying conditions that may make it difficult for you to lose weight. 

At Grassroots Healthcare, our team uses an integrated approach that combines nutrition, exercise, lifestyle changes, and other tools, like:

Learn more about the right way to lose weight for your unique body by scheduling an appointment online or over the phone at Grassroots Healthcare in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

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