Congratulations! You’ve officially made up your mind to drop those extra pounds and you want to do it as quickly and safely as possible. With so many ways to lose weight, it’s sometimes hard to decipher which methods are healthy and which may work best for you. So, let’s dig in and explore the pros and the cons of 5 of the most popular diets out there right now.
The ketogenic or keto diet is an extremely popular low-carbohydrate, high-fat diet. The goal of this diet is to maintain a state of ketosis, which means that by eating fewer carbs, the body’s fat-burning system relies mainly on fat instead of sugar for energy.
The Keto diet has been shown to be very effective for short-term weight loss – even more so than even low-fat diets. You should eat a lot of spinach and kale but sadly, many people eat a lot of bacon and eggs which leave out important disease-fighting nutrients, including fiber. If you follow this diet, it’s important to focus on diet quality, which means including high fiber foods, lean proteins, and healthy fats rather than saturated fat–rich foods like butter and bacon.
This high-fat, low-carb diet has a reputation for being quite challenging. Unfortunately, it is difficult for many people, to maintain eating this way for an extended period of time. The worse news is that when you go off the plan, you most likely gain back all the weight you lost. Some health experts believe eating a large amount of fat and protein from animal sources can increase your risk of heart disease and certain cancers. However, if you have diabetes the Keto approach can help you lose weight, balance those numbers and get you back on a healthy eating plan.
Intermittent fasting diet (time-restrictive eating)
Intermittent fasting is a term for an eating pattern that cycles between periods of eating very little or nothing, and eating regular meals. There are no foods that are disallowed and portions need not be monitored. This plan isn’t specific about which foods to eat, but rather when you should eat them. Some people fast for 16 hours a day and then eat all their food within an eight-hour time span; others fast for 24 hours at a time twice a week.
The intermittent fasting diet works well for people with busy schedules because it doesn’t really require planning. The general consensus on this diet is that, yes, it does work but it is not as easy to practice as you may think.
The discipline it takes to go without eating anything for 16 or for 24 hours is simply not a doable plan for many people so long-term compliance can be an issue. The criticism is mostly based on the fact that there’s no guide on what to eat during non-fasting days. People can easily end up gorging on unhealthy foods.
This diet is not recommended for people with diabetes because fasting could lead to low blood sugar that may require medication adjustment. People who have a history of eating disorders are also advised to steer clear of intermittent fasting.