Weight Loss Diets How To Make Them Work

Weight Loss Diets How To Make Them Work



As we​ all know,​ weight loss diets are big business. And looking at​ the​ statistics,​ it's easy to​ see why. Currently,​ an​ estimated 58 million American adults are overweight (BMI 25+),​ of​ whom an​ estimated 40 million are obese (BMI 30+),​ 9.6 million are seriously obese and 6 million suffer from super-obesity (BMI 40+). Worldwide statistics on​ overweight are equally alarming,​ as​ reflected in​ the​ new word "globesity". in​ China,​ the​ number of​ overweight people has risen from less than 10 percent to​ 15 percent in​ just three years. in​ Brazil and Colombia,​ the​ figure of​ overweight is​ about 40 percent - comparable with several European countries. Even sub-Saharan Africa is​ seeing an​ increase in​ obesity,​ especially among urban women. in​ all regions,​ obesity appears to​ escalate as​ income increases. And the​ higher the​ incidence of​ obesity,​ the​ higher the​ incidence of​ weight-related disease,​ including: type 2 diabetes,​ cardiovascular disease,​ metabolic disorders like insulin resistance,​ and cancers of​ the​ breast and colon.

CONVENTIONAL DIET METHODS

Both the​ US Surgeon General and the​ Dietary Guidelines For Americans (2005) issued by the​ US Dept of​ Agriculture emphasise the​ need for calorie control and increased physical exercise to​ reduce the​ overweight epidemic,​ but evidence suggests that conventional diet methods do not provide significant weight reduction,​ due to​ poor compliance. Surveys show that annual weight loss resulting from convention diet and exercise programs averages less than 8 pounds per annum,​ while in​ a​ 4-year follow-up study of​ programs incorporating the​ use of​ obesity drugs,​ behavior modification,​ diet and exercise,​ the​ final average weight loss was 3 pounds. This apparent failure of​ conventional weight loss methods is​ often contrasted with the​ 30-40 percent average weight loss following bariatric surgery.

FOOD COMPOSITION of​ DIETS

Fashion sells products,​ and weight loss diets are no exception. First we​ had low-fat diets,​ which were promoted as​ heart-friendly ways of​ reducing weight. Unfortunately,​ this message was interpreted by consumers as​ "all fats are bad,​ all carbs are good",​ and led to​ an​ unhealthy overconsumption of​ refined carbs. With the​ relaunch of​ Dr Atkins "New Diet Revolution",​ the​ fashion penduluum swung the​ other way. Now carbs were the​ enemy,​ not fat.
After Atkins came the​ South Beach Diet,​ which offered us a​ more moderate low-carb approach. Now,​ it​ is​ GI diets - based on​ foods with a​ lower glycemic response - that are high fashion and,​ being scientifically more beneficial,​ are likely to​ remain so for some time. However,​ while the​ food composition of​ diets may change,​ the​ basic law of​ weight loss remains unaltered: calorie expenditure must exceed calorie intake. to​ this extent,​ provided a​ diet is​ calorie-controlled and includes foods from all food groups,​ the​ exact composition of​ foods remains no more than a​ matter of​ personal taste.

GENERAL EATING AND EXERCISE HABITS

When assessing the​ effectiveness of​ conventional dieting methods,​ due regard must be paid to​ general eating habits. in​ America at​ least,​ these do not appear to​ be helpful. Despite the​ mounting evidence of​ weight-related ill-health,​ social eating habits continue to​ develop in​ unhealthy directions. Value-for-money "supersizing" continues to​ attract customers,​ while fast-food sales continue to​ rise. And the​ continuing demand for "instant" food only inspires the​ food industry to​ produce more and more refined food options bulging with nutritional deficiency and calorie-overload. is​ it​ any wonder that levels of​ diet-compliance among average dieters is​ so low? Meantime,​ an​ estimated 78 percent of​ Americans do not meet basic activity level recommendations,​ while 25 percent are completely sedentary.

IS SUPPORT the​ ANSWER?

If conventional diet programs remain less than perfect ways of​ tackling overweight in​ the​ face of​ engrained eating habits,​ it​ would be misleading to​ write them off completely. Not only does research data from the​ US National Weight Control Registry demonstrate that long term weight reduction is​ perfectly achievable,​ a​ number of​ diet programs,​ especially medically-supervised clinic-based programs,​ are consistently effective. What distinguishes these diets is​ the​ level of​ counseling support which subjects receive. Nowadays,​ this support can be provided in​ various ways,​ including: mandatory group meetings,​ one-on-one sessions,​ online forums or​ chat-rooms. And it​ seems to​ work. For example,​ according to​ recent studies,​ the​ average weight reduction for a​ 10-12 week clinic-based obesity program involving meal-replacement diets,​ exercise and counseling support is​ 5.5 pounds.

FINDING MORE SUPPORT

If getting proper support is​ one way of​ improving conventional diets,​ dieters need to​ rethink their approach. Instead of​ focusing attention on​ finding the​ optimal eating-plan,​ they need to​ look for programs offering optimal support. Weight Watchers is​ an​ obvious choice but diets organised around the​ workplace or​ other social groupings may also provide natural help. Online programs with forum support might also be considered. in​ any event,​ there is​ no substitute for a​ reliable dieting partner.

ADOPTING HEALTHY HABITS

Given the​ fact that losing as​ little as​ 7-10 percent of​ body weight can improve many of​ the​ problems linked to​ being overweight,​ such as​ high blood pressure and diabetes,​ some obesity experts advocate a​ less formal approach to​ calorie control. They recommend adopting certain healthy habits rather than following a​ specific diet. an​ example might be a​ 200-calorie-a-day reduction achievable by taking a​ moderate 30 minute walk,​ and switching from (say) whole milk to​ skimmed milk. This saves 73,​000 calories a​ year - the​ equivalent of​ 20 pounds of​ body fat. the​ commercial response to​ this approach is​ already visible in​ programs such as​ the​ "Three Hour Diet",​ which recommends regular eating to​ maintain a​ regular rate of​ calorie burning. Expect to​ see more weight loss programs like this,​ which emphasise specific habits.

CONCLUSION

Current levels of​ overweight and obesity require urgent attention. to​ be effective,​ conventional diet programs need to​ provide optimal support rather than optimal food composition,​ in​ order to​ facilitate diet compliance. For people who are unable or​ unwilling to​ follow a​ specific weight loss plan,​ making small but specific changes may be sufficient to​ achieve significant improvements in​ health.




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