As a nation, and indeed, as a race, we human beings are seemingly fixated on how we look and what we eat. Sadly, there are countless people out there who often live their lives constantly on some sort of diet in a bid to lose weight. Considering the fact that they are have been on a “diet” for so long, you’d expect them to have reached their optimal weight long ago, but more often than not, they haven’t. In actual fact, you will often find that, not long after finishing a diet, people actually gain even more weight, and repeat the cycle all over again. Diets suck. They simply suck, plain and simple. Ask any nutritionist or healthy living expert and they’ll tell you the exact same thing, though they will perhaps be slightly more conservative with their response. Everywhere we turn we’re constantly faced with adverts and articles talking about the latest “miracle diet” that promises instant results. If you follow a diet plan, of course you will lose weight, but there is so much more to dieting than simply watching what you eat. As controversial as this may be, here’s a look at several reasons why diets just do not work.
Many diets are fads and quick fixes – Society in general, is seemingly not interested in long-term results, instead, we’re more interested in quick fixes. The same principle applies when it comes to losing weight. People aren’t interested in healthy and sustainable weight loss, they want quick fixes. Unfortunately many diets out there are based upon speedy weight loss, and this in turn has been found to put people’s health at risk. With fad diets and crash diets, calories will often be very restricted. This means that people will have very little energy and they will constantly be hungry. This will indeed provide fast weight loss to begin with, but the body will quickly adapt and as the days go by the metabolism will be suppressed more and more, so you will actually burn fewer calories and have less energy. Losing weight should not be about quick fixes, it should be about adopting a healthy lifestyle, and sadly, most diet plans out there are not based around this.
Dieting makes you miserable – It’s very rare that you will come across an individual on a diet, who happens to be happy and full of life and energy. Instead, most people that are dieting are tired, irritable, and hungry. This can have a very detrimental effect on a person’s psychological well-being. As you probably know, when you’re hungry and lacking energy, you will feel pretty miserable, you could become angry, and your motivational levels will drop drastically. The last thing you will want to do if you’re tired and hungry is head to the gym and exercise, so you will either skip your workouts, or you’ll force yourself to train and will find yourself going through the motions, instead of actually enjoying yourself and pushing yourself. If you were to adopt a healthy lifestyle however, you could eat delicious and healthy foods that energize your body, leaving you feeling happy and content.
Dieting promotes binge eating – Think about this for a second: When people diet, they often fantasize about all of the delicious and unhealthy foods they have denied themselves for so long. When they eventually hit their weight loss targets, or simply have a day off from dieting, they often binge eat in a very big way. As soon as people finish their diets, the first thing they will do is reach for the unhealthy foods they have craved for so long. The problem is that they often go from one extreme to the other, so they will go from functioning on very few calories during the day, to taking in way, way more than they need. This often leads to yo-yo dieting as people lose weight, they gain it back, they lose it, they gain it back, and so on.
All diet plans work differently – As you know, there are numerous diets out there, far more than we could ever imagine, and each one works differently. The great thing about human beings is that we are all unique, and we are all individual from a physiological standpoint. Some people for example, will respond very favourably to low carbohydrate diets, whereas others will struggle with them. Because of this, there is no guarantee that a diet will work for you, just because your best friend’s brother’s uncle happened to lose 50 pounds on it. There will be fewer worse feelings than starving yourself, making yourself miserable, and pushing yourself to breaking points for months on end, only to find that you’ve barely lost any weight at all. Again, this is another reason why dieting can make you feel miserable.
Diets are not sustainable – As we keep saying, instead of dieting, what we should ideally be doing is changing our lifestyles instead. Diets are simply not sustainable because you can’t live your life in a constant caloric deficit, nor can you constantly live your life trying to lose fat. Often, diets are seen as nothing more than a means of losing weight, when in reality diets should be adjusted and turned into healthy lifestyles instead. Eating and drinking is about so much more than simply counting calories and trying to lose weight. Eating is about fuelling your body, nourishing it with essential nutrients, and seeing how it responds to different foods and drinks. Put simply, you cannot live your life constantly on a diet, as this is not sustainable, and it certainly is not healthy, either physically or mentally.
Diets suppress your metabolism – Though they don’t realize it, by embarking on calorie-restrictive diets, people often damage their metabolisms and slow them down. Eventually the body will become used to functioning on such small amounts of calories, so the metabolism will slow down and your thyroid could become damaged. When this happens you will have less energy, your body will burn fewer calories, and you will store more body fat. That’s right, by dieting you are actually setting yourself up for easier weight gain in the near future, and you’re making it harder for yourself to lose weight.