It seems like we are constantly bombarded with yet another new fad diet or miracle supplement that promises to help us bust belly fat, trim or rims, or melt the muffin top....
I'm human...and so, like many of my patients, I've tried numerous diets from Weight Watchers, to the Atkins Diet, the HCG diet, the Paleo diet, and the list goes on....I've weighed as little as 120 pounds and as much as 205 pounds (Pizza kept me awake at 1 am in medical school!)
Here's a fact: The dieting industry is a $4.5 BILLION a year industry for a reason...radical lifestyle changes are very hard to sustain! So what's the right answer?
Here are more FACTS:
1. Each of us has a unique set of genetic, physical, hormonal, and metabolic factors that affect our body composition.
2. In women, body weight is determined by hormone status, sleep patterns, bowel health, stress levels, activity levels, food intake, food sensitivities, prescription medications, and underlying health conditions....that is the SHORT list!
3. Much of the food we eat today contains GMO's, artificial colors, preservatives, dyes, hormones, and other unnatural ingredients which contribute not only to weight gain but also a variety of adverse health effects.
4. Many of us have underlying food sensitivities, often to the foods we eat frequently, which are sabotaging our attempts at losing weight.
5. And then there's GI health....Do you have the right gut bacteria? Leaky gut? Candida? Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth? Health gall bladder? Proper liver detoxification?
So, I'm often asked the question, "What about LOW CARB DIETS?"
More FACTS for you:
1. Research has shown that low carb (or in some cases ketogenic) diets can be of benefit in diabetics and in patients with heart disease.
2. Much of the benefit from low carb diets comes more from the increased protein and fat intake rather than simply a decreased intake of carbs. You tend to eat less because you feel full longer.
3. Low carb diets work well for short term weight loss, but research has shown that at 12 months and beyond, these diets aren't that great because people typically don't stick with them.
4. Much of the weight loss occurs as a result of cutting out refined carbohydrates, which we should restrict our intake of anyway.
5. Many people have an intolerance to grains, either because of intestinal dysbiosis, food sensitivities, or issues with processing or the source...So, giving them up helps for other reasons.
HERE ARE MY THOUGHTS:
Your weight is a function of many things, including the things I listed above. Just modifying your diet, regardless of how, will fail if other issues are not addressed...
For example, when I work with patients, I also look at their hormone profiles to help direct them on what to eat and what to avoid
I personally follow a lower carb diet...I eat lean protein and nuts, vegetables, and some fruit. However, this is mainly because I have issues with food sensitivities and dysbiosis. If I eat an apple, I swell to 4 months pregnant in 1 hour or less...But I also can't eat celery, broccoli, or cauliflower...
Do I keep my weight down? YES...but I also have to take 8 different supplements every day to prevent nutrient depletion from the things I can't eat.
And also remember...if you want something to work, regardless of what it is....it has to be a LIFESTYLE CHANGE....If you aren't willing to do it forever, then don't do it!