Since there are tens of thousands of diets, with each claiming to be the best or most effective, we normally find it hard to pick on what may work best for us. Although different diets claim to help you lose weight, gain weight, lowering cholesterol and may work in the short run, their long term impact is highly uncertain. In this article, we are going to learn why you shouldn’t go on a diet.
The reasons why you should not go on diet isn’t because diets don’t work. Diets work but they cause harm in some instances and only have short term results. They increase inflammatory markers, guilt, and shame, and low self-esteem if you happen not to achieve your goals.
Before we delve into more reasons why you shouldn’t go on diet, let us fast look at diets briefly.
What is the diet?
A diet can be described as a set of fixed or restrictive rules of eating and drinking aimed at achieving or following a particular lifestyle.
What are the different types of diets?
Like we have mentioned above, there are several diets out there. Some aim at suppressing appetite, while others aim at limiting carbs, calories or fat. The bitter truth is that; no diet is best for everyone, and what works for me may not necessarily work for you.
Below are some of the popular diets
1. Atkins diet
The Atkins diet aims at controlling insulin levels by limiting your carbohydrate intake. It discourages the consumption of refined carbs.
2. The zone diet
The Zone diet advocates for a nutritional balance of 40 percent carbohydrates, 30 percent fats, and 30 percent protein in any of your meals. The purpose of this diet is to control insulin levels to bring about a healthy weight loss. It restricts the consumption of refined carbs.
3. Ketogenic diet
The keto diet involves eating more fats and fewer carbohydrates. The body uses fats as a source of energy instead of carbohydrates. This diet helps weight loss, diabetes management and ensures good metabolic health.
4. Vegetarian diet
This is the diet that focuses on plant-based foods, excludes meat, and allows some animal-based foods like eggs, dairy, and honey. Vegetarians have a longer life expectancy and suffer less from diseases.
This is similar to the vegetarian diet only that it excludes all animal-based foods from the diet. It is believed that the vegans choose this kind of diet for health, compassion, ethical and environmental reasons.
6. Mediterranean diet
This is a Southern European diet that looks at the nutritional habits of the people of Crete, Greece, and southern Italy. In other words, the diet looks at the nutritional habits of countries that touch the Mediterranean Sea.
7. Raw food diet
The raw food diet involves the intake of unprocessed foods and drinks. The foods are completely uncooked and organic.
8. South beach diet
The south beach diet was invented by a cardiologist, Dr. Agatston, and a nutritionist, Marie Almon. It is lower in carbs and higher in protein and healthy fats. It is not a strict low-carb diet even though it is lower in carbs.
9. Weight watchers diet
Weight Watchers diet looks at losing weight through diet, exercise, and a support network through friends on the internet.
Why you shouldn’t go on a diet
Before you sign up for any restrictive eating plan that has been designed by someone who doesn’t even know you, here are reasons to opt-out of diet culture this year
1. Dieting reduces Metabolism.
With a restrictive diet, you don’t eat enough food. This slows your metabolism down because your body thinks you’re in a famine and begins to preserve energy to keep you alive.
2. Distorts the body’s relationship with food
Dieting consumes the victims’ minds. All that the individual thinks is what to eat and what to avoid. This means that one is likely to overeat the rest of the days when he or she is not dieting.
3. Dieting may lead to weight gain
Diets may work in the short run but may not be reliable for long terms results. For example, a study conducted in 2007 by Medicare revealed that people who participated in formal weight-loss programs were more likely to gain weight over two years than those who had not
4. Diets make you less healthy
With dieting, some of the foods are restricted. This means that the body will be deprived of some nutrients hence nutrient deficiencies. Nutrient deficiencies come with health risks depending on the type of nutrient the body may be lacking.
5. Diets alter your physiology.
Since the body requires energy from the food we eat to run most body processes, dieting may reduce the energy levels in the body. This can alter most body processes leading to effects like constipation, weak bones, dry skin, hair fallouts, and more.
6. Diets cause binge eating.
Diets create a lot of hunger during the dieting periods. When hunger is combined with stress, and emotions, one is likely to overeat once the dieting period is done. Interestingly, some diets also promote binge eating. For example, someone may be required to restrict consumption for 3 days a week and then eat whatever you want for the rest of the day.
7. Diets make you tired
The tiredness may not be coming from the lack of energy alone, but also the impact that diets make on your sleep. With diets, going to sleep and staying asleep is difficult. This is because of the survival mechanism. When the body is not getting enough energy, it will trigger hunger, to keep you awake so that you can look for food
8. Diets make you lonely
This is evident when it comes to social parties or family dinners. In most cases, what is served happens to be a no go area when it comes to your diet. This makes you avoid such social gatherings or any event hence loneliness.
9. Diets are expensive
Sometimes buying specific foods to suit your diet may be super expensive.
10. Diets destroy balanced eating
With dieting, you only have to observe a set of guidelines for a specific diet or a fixed plan. This means that you only have good food and bad food. At a certain point, you find yourself confined to certain types of foods. This deprives your body and makes it unbearable.
11. Diets discourage innovative thinking
Most of us spend so much time thinking about food, weight, and exercise. However, if that effort is concentrated on other things that also matter, who knows what we would have accomplished in life.
12. Diets make you feel worthless
Normally, when the person on a particular diet fails to achieve his or her goal, they feel like failures, guilty, ashamed, and worthless. This is because dieting and diet culture reinforce the thought that your worth comes from the body and the ability to control it.
What should you do instead of dieting?
Different people choose different diets because of different reasons which include; weight gain, weight loss, preserving the environment, and many more. However, dieting is associated with the challenges as described above. in order to move towards health and away from dieting, consider some strategies below.
Morning and evening exercises are good for your health. Exercise ensures a good metabolic rate, better heart health, and more.
Practice mindful eating
This involves paying close attention to how the food you eat makes you feel and the signals your body sends regarding taste, satisfaction, and fullness.
Focus on wellness, not weight
Adopt habits that are good for whole-body health regardless of their impact on your weight. Eat foods that provide balanced nutrition, and make you feel good.
Cultivate in self-esteem and respect
Choose to accept your size regardless of how or what the size is. This will promote self-care, better health choices, and overall enjoyable health life.
Say “no” to weight stigma
When you digest weight stigma, it becomes toxic to your life. When people accept and take weight loss stigma, they do more harm than good to their bodies. Therefore let us extend respect, compassion for all people, and their body sizes.
What are the advantages of dieting?
Dieting comes with a series of advantages which include;
- Weight loss
- Reduced cancer risk
- Diabetes management
- Heart health and stroke prevention
- The health of the next generation
- Strong bones and teeth
- Better mood
- Improved memory
Therefore, the reason why you should not go on diet isn’t that diets don’t work. Diets work but they cause harm in some instances and only have short term results. They increase inflammatory markers, guilt, and shame, and low self-esteem if you happen not to achieve your goals.