The reason why you shouldn’t diet.
How to lose weight is one of the most sought after things people want. And that’s okay, its okay to want to desire weight loss, to feel better and even look better. But, you shouldn’t diet if you want to lose weight and keep it off.
What’s the first thing that comes to mind when someone says they want to lose weight? It’s probably starting a diet. Now to be fair, a diet is just defined as the foods we habitually eat. So I want to be clear when speaking about diets i’m referring to fad diets like keto, weight watchers, paleo, etc. Fad diets for weight loss alone will not work. They’re called fad for a reason, they’re not useful for long term weight loss or health.
I’ll break it down, you decide to start x diet for 8 weeks – lets say cutting out all carbs. During these 8 weeks, you’re losing weight, mind you some of it is water weight due to low glycogen stores, but also some fat loss. Maybe you have experienced irritability and hanger from depriving yourself of a major macronutrient and source of fuel.
But hey, who cares if you’re losing weight? After 8 weeks, you’ve lost a decent amount of weight and are satisfied. Then you reward yourself with some carbs, maybe you even binge eat. And slowly but surely, eating carbs becomes a regular habit and maybe even returned to your previous eating habits. Now you’ve gained weight back, some fat and some water weight as well. You feel like a failure and ask, why can’t I lost weight or maybe you decide to choose a different diet.
Cold, Hard Truth
But the truth is fad diets are meant to fail. The diet industry is a multi-billion dollar industry. That’s right, multibillion dollars. They aren’t meant to last long term, you lose weight, fall off, rejoin another etc. The cycle continues over and over. This is why you shouldn’t diet.
So, how do people lose weight then and keep it off?
Find a style or healthy eating habits that can be a part of your everyday eating habits, without extreme restriction. First, you have to learn how to eat properly. Once healthy food habits are established, weight loss can follow.
Forming healthy eating habits certainly isn’t going to happen over night though. Its like any habit, let’s say riding a bike. It will take some knowledge, showing up for, and practice.
Fad diets are meant to fail, which is why you shouldn’t diet. Instead, focus on establishing healthy eating habits. Habits that can be maintained long-term, a mix of balance and a style of eating that is not extremely restrictive. For some basic tips to help you start, check out my weight reduction tips: focus on eating behaviors. Also check out an example of a balanced meal.