Losing as much weight as possible in a short time – that is the wish of many people. To get closer to this fitness goal, many people opt for a diet.
Many ask themselves at least one of the following questions:
Which diets are there?
How do diets work?
Why diets can be dangerous?
What advantage does a dietary regimen bring?
What is the “best” one?
Which dietary regimen should I choose? How much weight loss is healthy?
What should I consider when dieting?
Which Diets Are There?
A dietary regimen can be divided into the following groups:
Low Carb Diet: In this dietary regimen, only 5-40% of the calorie intake comes from carbohydrates. Examples are the Atkins, Mayo, Paleo, Dukan, Montignac or Keto.
Low-Fat Diet: Here we have only 10 to 30% of calories from fats. Examples are the Low-Fat-30, Ornish, TLC or Macrobiotic.
High-protein diet: More than 15% of calories are derived from protein, in some cases even more than 40%. These include, for example, the Dukan, Medifast or Paleo.
Balanced diet: It is usually a low-calorie mixed dietary regimen with a total energy intake of 850 to 1500 kcal per day. These include the following diet programs: Weight Watchers, Dash Diet, Slim-Fast, Zone.
Low-calorie diet: You consume only about 800 kcal per day. Often these are form diets where you mainly drink shakes. Examples of low-calorie diets: SlimFast, Cookie, Medifast, Nutrisystem, Raw Food Diet or The Fast.
Intermittent fasting: In intermittent fasting, there are hardly any rules on what to eat. It is possible to eat within 8 hours a day and to rest the remaining 16 hours. It is also possible to eat normally for 5 days and to go hungry for 2 days (= less than 500 kcal).
How Do Diets Work?
To lose weight, a negative energy balance is important. This means: You have to use more energy than you consume. Most of the above selection of food is based on this principle, as the calorie intake is reduced to about 800 to 1500 kcal per day.
Why Diets Can Be Dangerous?
In classical nutrition, a balance of the three macronutrient carbohydrates, protein and fat are recommended. Daily you should consume 50 to 60% carbohydrates, 15 to 20% protein and 25 to 30% fat.
But what happens during a diet? The recommended ratio shifts drastically! In a low-carb one, the carbohydrate content in extreme cases can only be more than 5%.
What Advantage Does a Diet Bring?
Overweight is often a risk factor for high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes mellitus, cancers, cardiovascular diseases, metabolic disorders or musculoskeletal disorders: weight reduction combined with a regular exercise program thus reduces the risk of illness.
What Is The “Best” Diet?
Because everyone reacts differently to these weight loss programs, it is not possible to say what the “best” one is. Scientific research shows that diets that obey the basic principles described above show little difference in weight loss.
Which Diet Should I Choose? How Much Weight Loss Is Healthy?
If you choose to diet, choose a style that suits your preferences and that you can sustain for some time. Furthermore, it should be well integrated into your everyday life. If you like animal food, you can try it with a low carbohydrate diet. This contains milk, meat, cheese, eggs as well as selected plant foods such as nuts and also salad. Do not choose an extreme one. This sometimes leads to faster weight loss, but also often to the yo-yo effect and already mentioned changes in hormone balance.
That’s what science says about the yo-yo effect:
80% of people on a diet experience a yo-yo effect. This can only be averted with balance and exercise. The more often one goes through the cycle of weight loss and gain, the higher the risk of suffering typical lifestyle diseases (e.g. cardiovascular diseases).
If you want to lose weight healthily and sustainably, it is recommended to lose around 1 kg per week.
What Should I Consider When Dieting?
If you get started, keep the following points in mind:
- Watch for a moderate weight loss over a longer period of time.
- Imagine a balanced dietary regimen with low-calorie foods.
- Supplement your diet change with regular exercise. Depending on the fitness goal, at least 150 minutes of sport per week is recommended.
Conclusion: Healthy Nutrition Needs to Be Learned
You should already learn to eat a balanced diet during the dietary regimen phase. The “healthy plate” is a good basis. Half on a plate should be vegetables and fruit. A quarter should be whole-grain products. Whole wheat bread or wholemeal pasta and another quarter make protein-rich products such as fish, poultry, legumes or nuts. Work on your selection of food and do enough exercise. Only then you will see good, sustainable results!