180 Nutrition: Anyone who’s ever spent any time with us knows that ‘diet’ and ‘dieting’ are words that are banished from our vocabulary.
From thorough research and first-hand experience, we know that good health starts from the inside and works its way out, and this covers so much more than the number on the scales. Every morsel of food that we put into our mouths is comparable to fuel – high or low quality, and just as with your car, the better quality fuel, the better your body responds.
Fuel your body with quality nutrients on an ongoing and consistent basis, and when coupled with a cardio and weight-based exercise program, your body will thank you by regulating itself into a healthy weight range. Not only that, your consistency of a balanced diet and regular exercise will ensure that your healthy weight is maintained for life.
We consistently come across those whose goal is to lose fat, either short-term for a holiday or event; or long term to rectify obesity which is causing serious ongoing health issues such as heart disease.
Don’t get us wrong – for those carrying a few extra kilos, this is a positive goal to have.
What is wrong about this, is calling it a diet.
With our mission to bring wellness to millions being our number one priority, we thought it was about time we put the ‘going on a diet’ theory to bed once and for all and gave you four sound reasons why dieting NEVER works.
1) The word ‘diet’ has temporary connotations
The health and fitness industry is rife with ten-week challenges, bikini body programs, and short-term promises. The problem with these diet programs is that they do nothing to change your mindset and work on your bad habits, and from the outset, you’re on the countdown to how long it will be until you can return to your old ways.
Once your diet is over and you’ve lost a couple of kilos (if you’re lucky), your old habits return and you’re reaching for the 3pm biscuits or the after-dinner chocolate as you always were. Before you know it you’ll be weighing in at more than you started.
Putting your body through the stress of yo-yo dieting has significant consequences for your health. Restricting calories causes your body to go into starvation mode and promotes the release of the stress hormone, cortisol. The long-term presence of cortisol increases your risk of cancer, heart disease and diabetes.
Tip: Never set an end date as far as healthy eating is concerned. Introduce realistic milestones and change one unhealthy habit at a time. For life.
2) Diets take the fun out of eating
Food not only tastes delicious and makes us feel good, but it also brings us together with friends and family and helps us connect on a social level. When you’re on a diet, this all goes out the window.
Where’s the fun in lettuce leaves, hunger pangs, and watching everyone else fill their faces? When you’re on a diet, you feel uncomfortable going out for dinner and don’t want to test your willpower by catching up with friends so you tend to become a bit more reclusive, and eating is something that’s done out of necessity only.
Tip: There are so many great-tasting and healthy food options out there, do your research and make sure you’re eating these until you’re full. Most menus are online these days so if you are going out for dinner and don’t want to be tempted into making bad choices, plan ahead so you know exactly what you’re going to order before you even get there.
3) Diets focus solely on calories
Hands up if you’ve been on a diet and not been allowed avocado. Or nuts. Or butter? I’d say most of you at some stage or another, and I’m calling BS! These foods are jam-packed with essential nutrients which our bodies NEED to survive. Due to the high calorie content, however, they’re off limits for most diets. And bodies throughout the world are suffering for it.
Tip: Count nutrients, not calories, this short video will help explain the process.
4) Diets SLOW DOWN weight loss
That’s right. You heard it here first, putting your body on a diet has the complete opposite effect of what you’re trying to achieve. When your body is in starvation mode and isn’t sure where it’s next meal is coming from, it holds onto the food it has for as long as possible. Your metabolism slows down so that calories are burnt slower which results in a slower rate of weight loss. Discover how Nicole lost 20kg in 6 months by following these principals.
Tip: Consistently eat nutrient rich food until you’re full. Your healthy metabolism will take care of the unwanted kilos leading your body to its ideal weight range.
There is no doubt that weight loss IS an important goal to have but ‘going on a diet’ will never, ever, ever get you the results.
Short-term, you may lose a couple of kilos here and there, but they’ll always go back on, and the damage that this does to your body in the long term can be irreparable.
So do yourselves a favour; commit to a long-term program that is realistic based on your lifestyle and make a commitment to follow a healthy eating plan consistently – TRUST us, over time, the weight WILL take care of itself.
If you’re struggling with weight loss or making long-term, sustainable changes to your health, check out the links below: