There are so many diets for women out there these days that its enough to get to your head spinning. To help clear so of the confusing, I’m going to briefly explain the four most popular diets for women.
Low Fat Diet
The low fat diet was huge a couple years ago. While fat does contain more than double the calories of protein and carbohydrates, it’s an important part of your body. Fat got a ‘bad’ reputation mainly from this diet fad. Limiting your fat intake is smart for weight loss, but limiting your fat to almost zero is just plain dangerous. Many body functions like your immune system rely heavily on fat to function. By sure to always get at least a couple tablespoons of fat per day while on this diet.
Low Calorie Diets
This is basically the “original” diet. Lower your calorie intake so your body burns more calories than it takes in. Seems simple enough. There is no need to worry about which food type you take, just so long as you limit your calories. This lead to diets like the Cabbage Soup Diet that lowered your calories to under 1200 a day. Something dangerously unhealthy. This diet works so long as you don’t overdo it. Lowering your calories too much makes your body think you are starving, sending into ‘survival mode’. This slows down your metabolism and makes weight loss nearly impossible. Good for our ancient ancestors, not good if you’re trying to lose weight. Therefore you should never try and cut too many calories to lose weight faster. One to two pounds a week is a good rule of thumb. Anything more and you’ll only be going in circles.
Raw Foods Diet
We all know the benefits of raw, natural foods, making this diet seem nutritionally sound. However dieters on the raw foods diet usually ingest too little fat, making this diet dangerous. Not only does your immune system and other body functions need fat to operate, vegetables need fat to absorb certain vitamins and minerals. I recommend you ingest at least a couple tablespoons of healthy fat (like olive oil) each day.
But this diet has the potential to be very successful. Since raw vegetables contain few calories but fill you up, you can lose a large of weight without feeling deprived. Be warned though, it may be hard to follow a raw foods diet when you are used to cooked foods. It will take a lot of time to adjust to this diet. The best course of action is to only replace 1-2 meals per day with raw vegetables instead of completely switching over.
Low Carb Diet
This seems to be the most popular diet now a days. Everywhere you go someones trying to avoid carbs. But there is a lot if misconception when it comes to carbs and weighty loss. Simple carbs like sugar and processed flour (bread, pastries) gets converted to body fat faster than protein or complex carbs. However once turned into body fat, carbs do not ‘stick’ to your hips. There is no difference between fat made form carbs, and fat made from protein.
The problem with many low carb diet is they restrict things like fruit and complex carbs like whole wheat. This is just flat out wrong. These foods promote weight loss. So while you can lose weight with a low carb diet, make sure you differentiate between plain carbs (which you should be avoiding) and complex carbs (which you should eat).
Whatever diet you choose, you should never completely exclude a certain food group. Your body needs protein, carbs, and fat to operate properly. By restricting one of these food groups too much, you risk putting your body in danger. The best diet seems to be a mixture of all the above diets. Make sure you exercise common sense when on any diet and you will be just fine.