Why diets don’t work
Here at Evolve Pilates, we truly believe that the key to a healthy lifestyle and maintaining a healthy weight is through consistent healthy eating and getting regular exercise. We are so excited to announce the opening of our weight management clinic. With that in mind, we wanted to address the reasons why we advocate a move towards a healthier lifestyle and not unrealistic fad diets.
Diet culture is growing. You only have to look at social media to see adverts for juice cleanses, shake diets and influencers advocating “clean eating”. All of these are forms of diets, despite being dressed up or marketed as healthy eating plans. There are several issues with a diet of any form and it’s important to address them.
Diets are based on restriction of calories. While, in theory, if someone is trying to lose weight, they need to be in a calorie deficit. The issue with diets is that they are often too restrictive and make people crave what is not allowed. Ultimately we then become fixated by the food. Whether it be carbs, sugar, fats etc. This then leads to a preoccupation with food and more often than not, we quit and go back to eating exactly how we did before, or worse, bingeing….. which leads us on to the next point
The above restriction which makes us throw in the towel on a diet, often leads to bingeing on the forbidden food or foods. This can mean we consume large amounts of calories in a very short space of time, thus making weight loss near on impossible. This leads to a cycle of restriction for a period of time then bingeing and returning to restriction. The overall effect is generally not going to be weight loss. It may even mean weight gain in the long run, as our metabolisms are harmed in the process.
They don’t lead to longterm weight loss
The majority of diets are unsustainable. They lead to weight loss in the short term, if you stick to them. However, when the weight target has been reached, the majority of people will return to the eating patterns they originally possessed which will mean they end up the same weight as when they first began. At least 65% of people who successfully lose weight gain it back within three years. This is amplified if the weight is lost quickly.
Fat shaming and discrimination based on weight is rife in our modern society. It makes people feel as though all of their health issues are caused by their inability to lose weight. They often have a long history of attempts at losing weight, failing, feeling guilty and restricting again. This leaves them with deep rooted guilt that affects their self esteem. An open minded, helpful and ultimately supportive approach to weight loss is much more constructive.
Ultimately, if you want to lose weight and keep it off long term there are a few things that are important to remember.
- if you restrict yourself too much, it will lead to feeling of deprivation and ultimately bingeing
- If you want to lose weight you need to make meaningful, sustainable changes to your diet. Healthy eating, the majority of the time is the only option.
- Beware of heathy eating “fads” that make you feel like certain food groups are “forbidden” or off limits for example. This includes Paleo, Gluten free (except in the case of true coeliac disease), clean eating and cleanses etc. They are just diets dressed up as a healthy eating fad.
- Ask for help, if you need it. A little accountability can be helpful if you are trying to lose weight and meeting with someone that can advised you on a healthy eating plan such as starting a plan at our weight management clinic, can be extremely helpful
- Be kind to yourself. A small setback doesn’t need to lead to the feeling of guilt and the resultant binge eating, If you deviate and have a treat or go out then that’s fine. Let it go and move on and get yourself back on track.
To talk to us here in Evolve about your weight loss goals call us on 0214319210, we would be delighted to help.