Weight gain is a slow and insidious health problem that creeps up on us over the years of our life. Yet when we decide to correct the problem, we generally look at the latest fad diets or slimming center programs to try to get rid of this excessive weight in a few weeks or months. Such diets or slimming programs cannot work because you are trying to fix a long-term problem with short-term solutions.

Most fad diets are marketed to get your weight off quickly and easily. If you are overweight, you’re likely to have tried at least one of the fad diet program. What happens when you come of the diet regime? You generally go back to the way you were eating that put all the weight on in the first place. This weight comes back on much faster and more aggressively.

It has been documented that people generally lose a maximum of 10% of their body weight. Two third of the weight is regained within a year and many times more over the next 5 years. In reality, overweight is a chronic, life-long problem and being on a diet for 8-12 weeks will not provide the solution no matter which program you choose.

Here is an example of a popular diet program

Atkins Diet – High Protein, High Fat, Low Carbohydrates

The Atkins diet approach is that carbohydrate contributes more to obesity than fat. The Atkins diet restrict carbohydrate intake of only 20g of low Glycemic Index (GI) food a day. This is starving the body cells of energy source.

When the body senses the lack of glucose from carbohydrate digestion, it uses up glycogen stored in the liver and muscle, which last for a few days. This is accompanied by the lost of water. So, you get an initial loss in weight from water and glycogen but not necessarily fat loss.

When the glycogen is used up, the body starts to breakdown muscle and fat for fuel in the form of ketones. The build up of ketones can cause liver damage, low blood pressure, fatigue and mineral loss from the bones.

Atkins diets should only last for 2 weeks, after which, one should slowly increase carbohydrate intake, as the body needs carbohydrate to function properly. However, many people simply continue eating high fat, high protein and low carbohydrate diet. This unnatural diet puts a lot of stress on the body and the brain cannot function on ketones as fuel, leading to fatigue, irritability and confusion.

When you quit the Atkins diet, the body needs fewer calories than before you started because there is less muscle mass. So, eating normally again means that not only is weight gained back quickly when water and glycogen is replaced, but fat will be regained more quickly because now fewer calories are required by the body to function.

Therefore, you will not win by losing. You must change your eating habit; practice choosing the right food and doing regular exercises. Learn to live a healthy lifestyle and you will achieve lifelong freedom.

What is your experience with fad diets? Share with me in the comment box below.

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