DIET – It’s Not Just a Four-Letter Word

December 24, 2011

dietDiet could perhaps be considered the most offensive four-letter word there is – especially around the holidays when that unwanted weight gain absolutely needs to be eliminated.

Everyone from the Kardashians to Valerie Bertinelli has tried to tell you which diet plans to use. More often than not, these diet scams are simply money wasters. How can you find a diet that isn’t just a placebo pill or a meal replacement shake? How can you find one that works best for YOU?

Grapefruit? Fasting? Colonics? No carbs? Only carbs? There are so many options out there. Basically, there are six types of diets to choose from. A few of them are listed below.

The Fixed-Menu diet tells you what to do. It gives you pre-planned menus of what you will be eating. Pro: You don’t have to think about meal planning. Con: You’re likely to get bored.

The Exchange-Type diet is less strict than the fixed-menu plan. You’re given a set number of servings from each of the food groups. Each serving contains about the same number of calories, so you can switch them around to tailor the diet to your needs and cravings. Pro: You get a lot of freedom. Con: It might be too much freedom if you lack discipline.

The Prepackaged Meal diet is just as it’s named. Your meals are prepared for you and likely can be found in the frozen-foods section of your local grocery store or from the diet center you’re using. Pro: It’s easy to microwave your meals. Con: You probably won’t learn any long-term nutrition skills to help you keep the weight off.

The Formula diet is a weight-loss plan that involves replacing meals with a nutritional supplement, often a milkshake or “formula”. Pro: An easy diet for the on-the-go dieter. Con: Again, you probably won’t learn any nutritional skills that will help you keep the weight off once you decide to go off the plan.

Questionable diets are those aforementioned diet scams often hawked by celebrities. Pro: They’re low-calorie and will help you lose a lot of weight in a short period of time. Con: They’re usually not healthy and you’ll very likely put the weight right back on.

The key to a successful diet is finding one you can live with. Find a diet that fits your lifestyle, your tastes, and is one that can teach you about long-term nutrition. Eventually, that diet will no longer be a dreaded four-letter word. It will be the way you live your life.

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