Knowing whether a diet is going to work for you takes research. You have to look at what is involved in the diet and how much flexibility it offers for your daily life. While you may believe you can structure your life around your diet plan, most people find they have more success when the diet plan can be integrated into their life.
Choosing between weight-loss diets can be tricky—it's easy to get overwhelmed by the results shown in marketing promotions and commercials. Your best bet in choosing a diet plan that works is to learn how to spot a fad diet and to understand what gives certain diets longevity and a good track record.
It may seem like there's a new diet trend every week, but many of these are simply fad diets that are unsustainable for any significant period of time, and possibly even unhealthy. When evaluating the many popular diets out there, avoid the following:
- Liquid diets. Liquid diets are certainly not to be used for the long term, and most put your body through unnecessary stress. If the diet doesn't include some type of substantial liquid protein, it's best to avoid it altogether.
- Expensive diets. If the diet requires that you buy expensive supplements, products or even food items, it's likely not a great diet for you. Figuring out a healthy diet plan that's within your budget is a much better strategy for long-term weight loss.
- Unproven diets. Most diets are at least grounded in some type of scientific evidence, based on the health benefits of a certain type of nutrient or food. If a diet has absolutely no proven scientific evidence, chances are it will be a waste of time.
Diets with Long-Term Popularity
Unlike fads, healthy diets typically stand the test of time and have been known to get results (if not necessarily the results claimed by the company). Some of the most popular and enduring diets include:
- Low-carb diets. Low-carb diet programs like the Atkins diet or the South Beach diet have helped many people lose weight. Although not without controversy, the restrictions in these diets are generally suitable for long-term use, and there is enough food variety that dieters don't get bored.
- Community diets. Community diets like Jenny Craig and Weight Watchers are perfect for people who do well in groups. Sharing success stories and pitfalls can be very motivational.
- Lifestyle diets. Many people adhere to lifestyle diet plans, like vegetarian and vegan diets, because they have moral or ethical foundations for them.