Health & Spirit

Nutrition News: Finding the Perfect Diet For Weight Loss

Charlyn Fargo on

Finding the Perfect Diet For Weight Loss

Losing weight can be so elusive. Makes you wonder if there's a best diet -- low carb, low fat, intermittent fasting, cabbage soup?

The bottom line? Forget dieting. Make lifestyle changes. Diets are for the short-term and usually don't hold up over the long-term. If you're serious about losing weight, make a specific, measurable, achievable goals. Start by choosing high-fiber foods that will help you feel full, and watch added fats. Even a "healthy" fat like olive oil is calorically dense. Oil has 120 calories per tablespoon.

In some ways, losing weight seems simple - expend more calories than are consumed and your body will use body fat for energy. We do that by eating less or by exercising more. We complicate the matter by trying to take a quick weight loss approach.

Environmental Nutrition newsletter warns against falling for these four weight loss myths:

Juicing helps you lose weight. Actually, replacing meals with juice isn't sustainable. When fruits and vegetables are juiced, components such as fiber are lost, but simple sugars remain. Drinking the equivalent of five fruits is not the same as eating those five fruits. Drinking calories for weight loss can be problematic because it eliminates the chewing process, making it easy to consume too much. Drinking 500 calories doesn't provide the same satiety as eating 500 whole food calories.

Fasting is required for weight loss. Whether it's fasting or intermittent fasting, individuals end up returning to the eating habits that caused weight gain in the first place. More research is needed on intermittent fasting to know how it works long term.

What works for one works for others. Weight loss is individual. Remember that what works for your neighbor may not work for you. An individual's support system and changes can greatly influence weight loss success beyond diet strategies.

There are magical fat-burning foods. No one food significantly increases metabolism or triggers fat burning. It's difficult to lose weight successfully, so the appeal of magic foods, from coconut oil to super fruits, is strong.

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