What does the word diet mean? According to the oxford dictionary the word diet means the kind of food people eat. This can clearly be the case because according to the company Boots there are over 100 many types of diets, from the alkaline diet, to the zone diet. There are a vast majority of them, with their benefits and their downfalls. However are these diets successful? Are they long term? Do we lose weight on them?
As we all approach the festive season, and the New Year, people at this time are looking at what foods they want to cut down on, or what new fad diet they would like to try. But overall will these work in the long term?
According to the magazine psychology today, researchers tested this methodology on various clients, it was found that there were other aspects to health, not just dieting, and weight loss, but also reduced blood pressure and cholesterol. The clients did not lose weight, however they had a positive attitude about themselves. In that respect diets can be a positive awareness, or on the other end of the spectrum diets can be seen as negative. For example a study carried out by Leicester City Council concluded that due to a poor diet they were unable to achieve the healthier diet that is recommended by the health professionals. A poor diet can mean lack of essential vitamins and minerals. Lack of vitamins and minerals can cause an array of problems. From feeling tired, to poor vision at night time, dry skin, fatigue, and soft bones. In relation to the popular diets out there each of the diets have problems if they are not followed properly, or not researched for suitability.
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The Dr Dukan diet was set up by Pierre Dukan in 2000. His aims and objectives were:
To increase a higher intake of protein.
To have a no limit of calories or the types of food you can eat, therefore people can eat whatever and whenever.
However there are some known issues of this diet, this includes:
The cost of purchasing the higher protein foods, i.e. meat, chicken, pork, nuts and seeds
The suitability for people on a restrictive diet for example, vegetarians or gluten free clients.
However there are some positives of this particular diet, one of them is that it is high in protein, which is important for the growth of new cells in the body, this can include hair, skin and nails. Another feature is that there is no limit of the amount of calories or types of food you can eat. Finally there is a limit on the amount of foods high in sugar, as excess sugar can lead to weight gain.
Another example of this is the cheater’s diet. This was created by Paul Rivas. He stated that by basing the meals on a Mediterranean style diet during the week, at the weekend cheat days are highly encouraged. Rivas explains that by having cheat days there is no restriction on having food and drink that consumers love to have, which include foods that may not be the healthiest of products. The diet is also supported by encouraging exercise.
According to a journal published by the European Journal of clinical nutrition, the writer Robinson explained that there were other factors that affected diet and lifestyle. While educational attainment had the strongest effects on diet, age, number of children living in the home, the number of people that smoked and the number of hours spent watching television, all were the contributing factors on the amount of exercise completed daily.
From the study it was concluded that the barriers that identified the issues facing diet and lifestyle, were to improve the quality of life, and not just based on weight loss alone. A study carried out by Yardley et al demonstrated that a combination of web based and health professional support for weight management could potentially offer a cost effective means of motivating obese patients to achieve a meaningful weight loss. It is important to be mindful that suitable diets that are recommended by Health Professionals including Dietitians, and Nutritionists are sourced by the National Clinical Governance Of Excellence (NICE). This is an organisation set up to provide guidance to improve the health and wellbeing in the United Kingdom.
Overall diets can be successful, especially for the better. As long as the vitamins, minerals as well as the macronutrients are not detrimental towards a poor diet, any diet can be positive long term, with the support of qualified health professionals.