Instead of “dieting” based on reducing calorie intake, nutritionist and nutrition science writer Maria Cross MSc, makes this recommendation:
The long-term solution is easier, more effective and evidence based. It involves these three principles:
1. When you cut out unnecessary carbohydrates, you burn body fat
2. When you eat fat, you burn fat.
3. When you eat protein, you stay full for much longer.
At the end of the day, this is still, technically, dieting. Because your diet is whatever you happen to eat.
Or… Maybe your diet is the prescribed plan that you have good intentions of following, whether to alleviate an illness or to reshape your body. The kinds advertised on magazine covers are more accurately described as reducing diets. Then, there are more variations. The diet could be a deliberate plan based on a positive principle, like “An apple a day.” Or it could be based on a strong negative admonition, like “No carbs ever.” Because the D-word has stretched out to cover so many meanings, misunderstandings have arisen.
Fitness expert Sean Croxton suggests that weight loss theory is too complicated and confusing for people to get a handle on, in addition to all the other things they have to deal with. He says of dieting, “It stresses people out. You know what? Stress makes you fat.” Here is his advice:
Eat right 80% of the time, other 20% of the time, get your groove on, have fun, enjoy your family, enjoy your friends. Don’t be the weird one out there being all evangelical about your food. Nobody likes that…
We always tell people the best diet to stick to. It is a diet that you can stick to.
More and more experts employ the term “multifactorial.” Purdue University’s Regan Bailey, Ph.D., MPH, is quoted as saying that many individual factors can cause people to respond differently to the same diet. Journalist Markham Heid adds,
These include person-to-person genetic variation, age, baseline nutritional status, inflammation levels, and microbiome makeup — to name just a few.
Joanna Blythman told audiences in her Guardian article that by advertising any food as low-fat, “you can sell people any old rubbish.” Also,
Low fat religion spawned legions of processed foods, products with ramped up levels of sugar, and equally dubious sweet substitutes, to compensate for the inevitable loss of taste when fat is removed.
This was in reaction to decades of what some critics view as the demonization of fat, which was carried out in order to divert suspicion from sugar. When a person embarks on a mission to get the body in order, the publication of new studies can sometimes upend their cherished beliefs. For instance,
[…] trials which show that low carb diets are more effective than low fat and low protein diets in maintaining a healthy body weight.