Not all diets are created equally, especially the most popular diets that get a lot of attention from the press, your friends or even co-workers. Usually such programs gain popularity quickly due to results that are written about or are promoted around a celebrity. Or the news media writes about a specific approach that shows extraordinary results over a quick period time. Generally, if you are reading about a new diet program in the press there is a good chance it is being heavily promoted regardless of its real long term effectiveness. However, there are three characteristics that the most popular diets share and they can help you manage and lose weight. When assessing a weight loss program make sure it embraces the following:
Commitment To Exercise – All effective diets focus on some form of exercise as part of an overall weight loss program. Simply counting calories will likely not create the necessary conditions to burn them off. Plus, employing some type of achievable exercise routine keeps you focused on your weight loss goals. If a weight loss program doesn’t involve some form of exercise as an important part of the overall approach, it will only support short term results. And that is never healthy or productive in the long run.
Focus On The Food – Paying attention to the food you eat seems obvious but the most popular diets focus on natural, or whole foods that are minimally processed. Programs that have you prepare specific foods to eat (versus buying pre-made meals) are better from an overall health perspective than buying packaged processed foods, which are typically higher in calories. By preparing your own food you are less apt to eat lower quality foods that are high in fat or empty calories simply because you are actively involved in the process.
Long Term View – Although there is nothing wrong with needing to drop a few pounds, diet programs that promise quick results are not sustainable, regardless of the amount of weight you are trying to lose. Look for rates of weight loss that support no more than 2 to 3 pounds per week, at most. Weight loss approaches that support a lifestyle change will give you the best chance for long term weight management.
Talk with friends for their feedback and do web based research to validate that the programs you are assessing contain all three of these components. The most popular diets that are also the most effective share these common traits and support getting rid of extra weight that you can keep off over the long term.