Texans team nutritionist Roberta Anding is a frequent contributor to HoustonTexans.com. You can send her a question by clicking on her name above.
Here's how to spot a fad diet:
- Eliminates an entire group of foods
- Promises more than 1-2 pounds of weight loss per week
- Sounds too good to be true
- Gives unreasonable testimonials from clients or experts without credentials
- Involves buying expensive books, pills, or prepackaged meals
- Draws simple conclusions
What should you do?
- Get 30-90 minutes of physical activity in every day
- Eat a variety of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains
- Avoid soft drink and other high sugar beverages
- Watch your portions, eat when you're hungry and stop when you're full
- Eat all foods in moderation
- Don't skip meals
Description: Recommends consuming a high fat and protein diet with a low carbohydrate intake. Has different phases that gradually work up to a slightly less restrictive carbohydrate intake.
Pros: - Followers normally see a greater rate of weight loss than with other types of diets when followed correctly
Cons: -Eliminates fruits and many vegetables that provide fiber, vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals.
-Initial weight loss is water weight, which can return back quickly
-Over time, some studies have shown the excess protein may lead to a decreased bone mass
-Difficult to follow long term
Description: A low carbohydrate diet, that recommends eating carbohydrates such as whole grains, fruits, and vegetables. * *
Pros: -Emphasizes healthier fats and carbohydrate choices
-Recommends a variety of fruits & vegetables after the second phase
-Encourages eliminating foods high in sugar and less nutritious carbohydrates
Cons: -Eliminates fruits and many vegetables during the first phase. * * -Promises large amount of weight loss in the first 2 weeks that is difficult to maintain
Description:Recommended calorie breakdown is 40% carbohydrate, 30% fat, and 30% protein. The staples of the diet include meat, fruits, and vegetables.
Pros:-Allows for some fruits and low starch vegetables
- Emphasizes "good" fats (monounsaturated fat)
Cons:-Difficult to eat recommended fat, carbohydrate, and protein ratio at every meal
- Expensive to follow because of the recommended large quantities of high protein foods
- Limits vitamins and minerals that are found in restricted foods
Sources: The American Academy of Family Physicians: *[http://www.healthyweightforum.org/*](http://familydoctor.org/784.http://familydoctor.org/784.