Are popular diets more harmful than good?


Are popular diets more harmful than good?

Abu Dhabi - Popular diets can offer quick weight loss results, but following strict dietary plans that relies solely on a specific food intake or leaving out others isn't always healthy

By Jasmine Al Kuttab

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Published: Sun 4 Sep 2016, 9:38 PM

Last updated: Mon 5 Sep 2016, 9:09 AM

The emphasis on healthy eating is so in these days, that it's achieved trend status. Almost all of us know people who're busy targeting their goal weight, hitting the gym and living a more all-rounded lifestyle.
However, eating healthy or losing weight doesn't involve just quick and temporary solutions. Rapid weight loss is usually followed by equally quicker weight gain, and it can also lead to dangerous health outcomes.
Some of the common modern diets or eating lifestyles that people who are hungry for results often turn include the Atkins Diet, which recommends a high fat and protein diet and minimal intake of carbohydrates and sugar.
Other regimens include the opposite of Atkins, like the vegan diet that only allows the individual to consume whatever he or she wants to, as long as it has no animal products in it, including meat, eggs, milk or even honey.
Vegans turn to fruits and vegetables, as well as beans, seeds and grains for consumption. Regular cow's milk is swapped for other alternatives, such as almond, coconut or soy milks. Another popular diet that many are turning to is the gluten-free diet, popular with those who have wheat and gluten allergies, including sufferers of celiac disease. However, it's a hit with many who have no allergies to gluten or wheat at all.
Popular diets can offer quick weight loss results, but health and medical experts told Khaleej Times that following strict dietary plans that relies solely on a specific food intake, while avoiding other food groups, could eventually lead to severe and lifelong health problems, including anaemia, heart disease and cancer.

Food for thought - it's all about creating a balanced diet
. Who have the best diets in the world? Health experts suggest it's the Japanese and the Mediterranean diets.
. If you want to diet, go for healthy, traditional diets, which consume everything but with a focus on certain healthy foods, rather than avoiding any food group.
. The wider variety of foods you eat, the more nutritional sources you choose from.
. Balance out your consumption of all food groups.
. Depending on your body, protein should only be about 15-25 per cent intake every day, and preferably from lean meats, like chicken and fish, and low fat dairy products.
. No more than 7 per cent in saturated fats should be consumed each day
. The best eating approach (and sustainable in the long run):
- portion control
- low in sugar and fats
- heavy in fibre, fruit and vegetable intake
- Omega-3 fatty acid rich (found in salmon, soybeans, canola oil and walnuts)
. Consume within reason, get enough calories for your gender, body weight and other parameters.
. Focus on cutting out processed and artificial sugars, not protein, carbs or white meat.
. Finally, weight loss and keeping healthy is only accentuated by exercising.

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