5 Most Popular Diet Trends With the Best Results
When it comes to diets, the “one size fits all” is definitively not the rule to go by. While some focus on limiting the carb intake, others work to suppress the appetite or reduce the number of calories, all claiming to provide the best of results. But what works for you may not work for someone else. And vice versa.
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Therefore, to give you a helping hand in getting out of this limbo, we’ve reviewed some of the most popular diet trends and tried to simplify matters so that you can make an informed choice , whether you want to lose weight or simply to live a healthier life.
The Ketogenic Diet
A keto or ketogenic diet is very low on carbs and high on fat, which brings your body in a metabolic state of ketosis. This means that your body is running mostly on fat, because it does not have enough carbs to burn for energy.
The keto diet restricts sugary foods altogether, as well as starchy foods like bread, rice, pasta, potatoes and processed foods. It is extremely effective when it comes to weight loss, consisting of less than 20 grams of net carbs per day, which translates into approximately 5% energy from carbs, while 15-25% are from protein and 75% from fat.
As a downside, it may cause dizziness, cramps or dehydration.
The Vegan Diet
Veganism is very popular nowadays, but for most of its followers, it is not simply a diet, it’s a way of living based on ethical, environmental and ultimately, health reasons.
The vegan diet eliminates animal products completely, namely meat, eggs and dairy, and any animal byproducts or ingredients derived from animals. Instead, all these are replaced by plant-based substitutes such as fruits and vegetables, tofu, cereals, seeds and nuts.
Adopting a vegan diet has proven to be effective in lowering blood sugar levels and in losing weight due to the lower calories intake and the higher fiber intake which gives you a feeling of satiety for a longer period of time. The downside of the vegan diet is the fact that it may cause certain nutrient deficiencies.
The Paleo Diet
The Paleo diet takes us back in time to our ancestors’ eating patterns, before farming became popular. While it may be difficult to know for sure what their food consisted of, this diet emphasizes the use of whole foods and lean protein and the exclusion of processed foods, legumes, dairy and grains.
The Paleo diet takes pride in reducing risk factors for heart disease, diabetes and obesity and slimming your waistline without the tedious task of counting calories.
The drawback for those in favor of the Stone Age menu is the lack of nutrients from legumes and dairy, which they would have to supplement in another way.
The Atkins Diet
The Atkins diet is one of the most popular and debated low-carb diets, especially effective if your aim is to lose weight. The theory behind it is that you can eat as much protein and fats as you like, as long as you stay away from high-carb foods.
Its success comes from the fact that a higher consumption of protein provides a higher level of satiety and reduces appetite more efficiently and in a healthier manner than other diets. Also, compared to low-fat diets, it recorded better improvements in terms of blood sugar, “good” HDL cholesterol, triglycerides and other health markers.
As with other low-carb diets, the reported downside of Atkins diet is that weight loss is short term unless you change your whole lifestyle to maintain it.
Intermittent fasting is currently on the rise as one of the most popular nutrition and fitness trends.
This type of diet, or better said, eating pattern, focuses on when instead of what you eat, by splitting the day or week into eating and fasting cycles.
Intermittent fasting has proven to be a useful tool in boosting metabolism while helping you reduce the amount of calories. It’s a very effective way to shed the unwanted weight and belly fat, with a success rate of 3-8% weight loss in 3-24 weeks. It has also been linked to facilitating the growth of new nerve cells, reducing the risk of heart or chronic diseases.
Intermittent fasting is, however, not recommended to people with nutrient deficiencies, pregnant women or individuals sensitive to blood sugar drops.
All in all, keep in mind that these are more like guidelines and can be adapted to your own needs and lifestyle. In the end, the best diet is the one that is easy for you to follow on the long term and makes you feel healthy and good about yourself.