Why Diets Don’t Work

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Why Diets Don’t Work

Last Reviewed: 30/10/2020

Time To Read: 3mins

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As I write this, I am watching a documentary on obese adults in New Zealand. I’m talking morbidly obese. Body Mass Index (BMI) of 50+ (weight over 300lbs/150 kg) and it makes me more determined to get this message out.

Are you one of those people who have tried every diet under the sun and still put on weight? Usually more after your ‘diet’ finishes or you quit. As long as I can remember, there’s been some new diet that promises the world and always fails to deliver. Off the top of my head – the cabbage soup diet, the juicing diet, the fasting diet, the 80:20 diet, Paleo diet, keto diet, everything to do with no carbs, high carbs, low fat, high fat, low protein, high protein! It’s never ending. 

Then there’s the ‘diets’ that deliver food to your door and also promise the world. Do you know why these diets set you up to fail? Because they don’t teach you anything. They teach you how to open a packet. And once that so called ‘diet’ stops being delivered to your door, what have you learnt? Certainly nothing about how to choose your own food and look after your own health. You just learnt to open a packet and eat unconsciously.

There really is so much information out there about food and nutrition that is just wrong. It is easy to understand why people are confused about what to eat. That’s why this website and The Food Cruncher exists - to teach you the truth about food so you can take control of your own health by making informed choices.

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Think bigger picture – if all these wonderful diets worked then why is the world getting fatter?

It’s not your fault if you are confused about nutrition. I know nutritionists who even get sucked into the hype about some new ‘fad’ thing to do with nutrition. The media are very good at portraying one side of the story. And then you have ‘influencers’ often paid a large amount of money to promote some new nutrition fad just to suck you in and take your money.

Losing weight is not easy. Keeping it off is even harder. But that’s why we set up this site – to teach you how to improve your health forever. Not for 3 months or 6 months when you hit your goal weight and then go back to how you used to eat. But forever.

Another reason diets fail is they don’t teach you to make permanent changes to your diet. Changes that you can live with for the rest of your life. Because if you want to live a healthy life for a long time, that’s what you need to do. Eat well. Forever. That doesn’t mean you can’t have chocolate, or McDonalds, or KFC or whatever it is you can’t live without. It just means you can’t have it every day. Not if you want to live well. For a long time. People are living longer. That’s a fact. But are they living longer as healthy individuals or are they living longer with disease and lots of pills?

Wouldn’t you rather live long and be healthy so you can do the things you want to do when you are retired? If you have 20 years of retirement and you are sick…think about that. What are you going to do for 20 years stuck in a chair because of a stroke, or heart attack, or diabetes…those things are all preventable with good nutrition and exercise.
If you are still reading this blog – yay! So, you must be interested in improving your health long-term.

The best recommendation I can make towards improving your health (and that’s about maintaining a healthy weight, eating well and exercising daily) is to do one thing at a time.

That’s another reason diets fail. They try to get you to change everything at once. It’s too hard! Far better to work on one thing at a time. Choose one thing you can start with. Like swapping a snack for something healthier – you might eat a cookie for a snack – try swapping it for a piece of fruit. Easy. Just one thing. Do that for a few weeks until it becomes a habit. Then add in something else. I can’t tell you what to swap or change exactly without knowing what you eat. But you get the idea.

The biggest message I want to get across is – do one thing at a time! Once it becomes easy and a habit, then move onto the next thing. This is a really good way to try and change bad habits for good ones and to do it permanently. Remember, the weight didn’t arrive overnight. It might have taken 10 or 20 years to get to where you are now. Why would you think it will come off overnight? Or in a week? Or a month? That’s another problem. People want instant results. That’s unrealistic. Another reason diets’ fail. They might give you fast weight loss in the beginning, but they don’t teach you how to change your habits forever. Which is why the weight goes back on – and usually more.

You need to do a bit of work to keep the weight off. You need to educate yourself on what’s in your food. And really, you need to learn to read food labels. If you can’t be bothered – eat mostly plant-based foods! At least you will be getting lots of vitamins, minerals and adequate carbohydrates and protein. If your diet is made up of mostly plant-based foods, it will naturally be low in fat (particularly saturated fat). There’s lots of other reading you can do to educate yourself (on this site). And that’s the point – to teach everyone who is reading this how to live a long, healthier life through making good food choices.

If you are interested in improving your health for the long term, and never want to go on another ‘diet’ ever again, think about subscribing to The Food Cruncher – for all things nutrition. No fads. Only evidence-based nutrition information. Thanks for reading.

Michelle @ The Food Cruncher.

Do you want to learn about what’s in food and how to be healthy?
The Food Cruncher teaches you all things nutrition (and exercise).

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The Food Cruncher provides general information and a forum for discussions about health, wellness, food and related subjects. The information and other content provided in this website, or in any linked materials, are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice, nor is the information a substitute for professional medical expertise or treatment.

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