It is a general misconception that all diet plans are healthy. In a compiled research findings, nutritionists mention that, “Just because the diet plan uses fruits and vegetables doesn’t mean it is a healthy plan.” The idea of a balanced diet is that people get to consume as much vitamins and minerals from various food sources. This can only be accomplished when individuals eat a variety of food that includes fruits, vegetables, grains, healthy fat, nuts, seafood and lean meat.
Too much of everything is dangerous. One good example of this is the cabbage soup diet, which is one of the most popular rapid weight lost diets in the world. It’s eaten as the main food in the plan, along with other stuff like apple, grapefruit and sometimes vanilla ice cream. At the surface, the plan sure looks healthy, but it lacks all essential nutrients that make a person healthy. The American Heart Association warns that, “The Cabbage Soup Diet is ineffective and poses numerous adverse side effects.” LIVESTRONG.COM listed some of these adverse effects in the following categories:
Abdominal pain, Gas and Bloating
Fatigue, Hunger and Exhaustion
Electrolyte and Heart Problems
How Expensive Is A Healthy Diet?
A healthy diet is not expensive. The most conventional one is balancing fruits and vegetables with some grains and protein-rich foods. That being said, not all nutritional diet plans are bad and just a fad. U.S. News & World Report, an American news weekly magazine founded in 1933 noted that, “If you want a program that works for the long run, you’ll need a lifestyle you can live with and like. That means a diet that’s nutritious and delicious, but one that will take a bit of planning and commitment from you. While staying lean is a big part of good health, weight lost doesn’t always equal health gained. That new diet that took inches off your waistline could be harming your health if it locks out or severely restricts entire food groups, relies on supplements with little scientific backing or clamps down on calories to an extreme.”
What makes a weight loss program expensive is paying money for a plan that is not effective or sustainable. If a person has to jump from one diet plan to another, that will cost him a lot of money without accomplishing so much of his weight loss goals. The worst part though is if these diet plans will have detrimental effects on health. Madelyn Fernstrom, the author The Real You Diet, and the founding director of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center said that, “People are so desperate to lose weight that it’s really weight loss at any cost.” Choosing a healthy diet plan is a critical decision that requires discernment and knowledge about diet and nutrition.
The Best and Worst Diet As Ranked By The U.S. News & World Report
U.S. News & World Report has ranked the existing 38 popular diets into best and worst based on safety and nutritional completeness. They ranked each diet with a “healthiness” score from 1, which is worst to 5, which is best. A panel of diet and nutrition experts has given the score. Andrea Giancoli, an RD serving as an expert panel said that, “The ones that get high scores in safety and in nutritional value – they’re very similar to each other.”
3 Best Diets Overall
#1 DASH Diet – which requires a healthy 2000-calorie diet on a daily basis. It contains, “6-8 servings of grains; 4-5 each of veggies and fruit; 2-3 of fat-free or low-fat dairy; 6 or fewer of lean meat, poultry and fish, with one serving being equivalent to an ounce; 4-5 (a week) of nuts, seeds and legumes; 2-3 of fats and oils; and 5 or fewer (a week) of sweets.”
DASH Diet got an overall score of 4.1/5, 3.1/5 for weight loss, and 4.8/5 for health benefits.
#2 MIND Diet – which stands for Mediterranean Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay. It emphasizes on, “Eating from 10 brain-healthy food groups: green leafy vegetables in particular, all other vegetables, nuts, berries, beans, whole grains, fish, poultry, olive oil and wine.”
The MIND diet got an overall score of 4.0/5, 3.0/5 for weight loss, and 4.6/5 for health benefits.
#3 TLC Diet – or Therapeutic Lifestyle Changes Diet. It works by lowering LDL by maintaining the required 2,500 calorie/day. But for individuals who need to shed off some pounds, TLC work by targeting, “1,600 calories for men or 1,200 for women on a daily basis by cutting saturated fats and controlling dietary cholesterol among other processes.”
The TLC diet got an overall score of 4.0/5, 3.0/5 for weight loss, and 4.7/5 for health benefits.
3 Worst Diets Overall
#1 Paleo Diet
#2 Raw Food
#3 Macrobiotic Diet
#4 Fast Diet
#5 Dukan Diet
#6 Supercharged Hormone Diet
#8 Whole30 Diet
These 8 diets received a “healthiness” score below 3. The experts say that these diets are, “Simply too restrictive. The meat-heavy Paleo diet bans grains and dairy, so getting adequate calcium and vitamin D isn’t easy. Atkins, by severely curbing carbs, blows past recommended caps for total and saturated fat. Depending on your personal approach to the Raw Food Diet, you may shortchange yourself on calcium, vitamin B-12 and vitamin D; its restrictive cooking rules also could put you at risk for eating raw or undercooked ingredients.”
There is also the juice fast fad that you use a juicer. Is it bad? Maybe if you are trying to lose weight.