Warning: include(header.php): failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 29

Warning: include(header.php): failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 29

Warning: include(): Failed opening 'header.php' for inclusion (include_path='.:/opt/php70/lib/php') in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 29

Warning: include(main_menu.php): failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 35

Warning: include(main_menu.php): failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 35

Warning: include(): Failed opening 'main_menu.php' for inclusion (include_path='.:/opt/php70/lib/php') in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 35

Warning: include(sub_pages/articles_tips/articles_menu.php): failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 40

Warning: include(sub_pages/articles_tips/articles_menu.php): failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 40

Warning: include(): Failed opening 'sub_pages/articles_tips/articles_menu.php' for inclusion (include_path='.:/opt/php70/lib/php') in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 40

Warning: include(sidebar.php): failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 51

Warning: include(sidebar.php): failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 51

Warning: include(): Failed opening 'sidebar.php' for inclusion (include_path='.:/opt/php70/lib/php') in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 51

Warning: include(bodyad.php): failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 54

Warning: include(bodyad.php): failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 54

Warning: include(): Failed opening 'bodyad.php' for inclusion (include_path='.:/opt/php70/lib/php') in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 54

Fad Diets? The Truth On Quick Weight Loss
by Amy Carlson, MS, RD, LD

You've heard it before... "My neighbor just lost 20 pounds in 3 weeks and says he's never felt better" or " hey my co-worker said her brother lost 50 pounds and he can eat whatever he wants". These statements often produce understandable curiosity and for those that are in need of quick weight loss solutions they even offer hope. There are countless "quick weight loss" diets out on the market today. Many with seemingly credible authors. Why do these quick weight loss diets produce so much hype? Because millions of Americans are in need of the answer to one common question? How do I lose weight?

The "diet of the year" is a high protein, low carbohydrate variety that targets carbohydrates as the culprit for our ever thickening waste-line. They promise if we will just give up our beloved bread and potatoes we can eat fat and meat and lose inches virtually overnight. I see client after client come to me with stories of relatives, friends, neighbors and acquaintances that have lost weight by eating "lots of protein" and want to know if it will work for them. The truth? Yes and No! These high protein, low carbohydrate diets are typically very low in total calories resulting in substantial weight loss. Depriving your body of carbohydrates also results in substantial water loss that contributes to lost numbers on the scale. What you may not realize is along with the potatoes and bread that you have forsaken on these diets you have also given up your candy-bars, sodas, cheesecake and candy; substantial calorie contributors that are more the culprit to your waste-line than a piece of bread. These diets also encourage exercise and smaller portions each of which are key players in the quest for a leaner you. And both of which are healthy, long-term solutions to weight loss. I tell my clients my infamous motto "If the method is temporary, the weight loss is temporary". There is 100% regain of the weight lost on a very high protein diet.

So what is a more reasonable answer? Long-term, gradual weight loss that is permanent and that includes exercise as a part of the solution. This occurs when you first identify your motivation to lose weight. Is weight loss essential to your happiness? Is your extra weight hindering your work, relationships and/or happiness? If the answer is yes, then you may want to consider taking a serious approach to your weight loss goals. Second, establish a reasonable weight loss goal for yourself. You may need professional guidance to help you establish a healthy, reasonable weight for yourself. Meeting this achievable goal becomes much easier than attempting to lose weight that may not need to be lost. I typically ask my patients their goal weight and then ask them "When is the last time you weighed that weight?" At that point we reestablish a new goal weight. Keeping a food diary for seven days can help you identify your problem areas. It may be that indeed you do get too many calories from carbohydrate foods including pasta, bread, sweets and/or sodas. But your problem area may be that you skip breakfast and then overeat late into the evening? Targeting your problem areas gives you the groundwork to establish realistic goals that you can work on slowly and that typically lead to permanent change. Whatever your weight loss goals, remember your diet is individual. There is no one answer for every individual. But keep in mind your total health when rearranging your intake. For example fruits, vegetables, low fat dairy, lean protein, and complex carbohydrate all contribute essential nutrients to your diet. "Fad diets" that propose you eliminate any of these major food groups do not have your overall health in mind no matter what "scientific studies" they quote. Quick weight loss is an oxymoron. It doesn' t exist! Weight loss is gradual and if done correctly can be permanent. Put your weight back into its proper place! Remember, life is short! Eat healthy and play hard!

Amy B. Carlson, MS, RD, LD is a registered dietitian and consults clients in the greater Houston area. To contact Amy for an appointment call 713.978.1713 or e-mail her at abcdietitian@houston.rr.com.

View Amy's Bio
View our frequently asked nutrition questions & answers




Weight Training
Lat Pulldowns
Pulldowns are a great exercise for the back muscles but avoid pulling the bar behind the head. Pull the bar down in front of the body toward the collar bone and with the bar just below your chin. Pulling the bar behind the head puts undue stress on the shoulders and rotator cuff.
Running
Avoiding Shin Splints
Do you have lower leg pain or shin splints from running? Running on hard surfaces, worn out running shoes and weak calf muscles could be the culprit. Try running on soft trails, buying a new pair of running shoes or adding calf exercises to your weight training routine.
Walking
The Talk Test
A great way to make sure you are staying in your aerobic fat-burning range is the talk test. If you cannot comfortably carry on a conversation with your walking partner you probably need to bring down the intensity to assure yourself that you are burning fat.
Fat Burning
Your Anaerobic Threshold
A great way to make sure you are burning fat during cardio sessions is knowing your anaerobic threshold or where your heart rate zone needs to be to burn fat stores. Find a gym or fitness center that offers anaerobic/VO2 testing. Merlino Fitness offers anaerobic threshold testing every month. Check out the link below for more details.
Merlino Fitness Metabolic Testing
Nutrition
Keys to Weight Loss
If you are trying to drop weight make sure you incorporate the following to get you on your way. Drink lots of water, don't skip meals (especially breakfast), do not eat late night meals or snacks after 7 or 8 pm and build as much activity into your everyday life as you can. Michael also recommends joining weight watchers to anyone trying to lose weight and keep it off long term.
Nutritional Supplements
Stay Away From Ephedra!
The weight loss/energy supplement is in the news again. Supplement companies that market this controversial supplement claim it is safe although many have died from this dangerous supplement. Make sure you check the labels of your nutritional supplements as many are laced with ephedra, also known as ephedrine or ma huang (the actual herbal).
Quick Tip Archives
Our archived collection of fitness and nutrition tips to help you stay focused and fit.
Tip Archives

Soy Dream
Ice Cream Sandwiches
Take the edge off those sweet cravings with this healthy soy alternative to an ice cream sandwich without the unwanted calories and guilt.
Product Website
Eggology Egg Whites
Take the edge off those sweet cravings with this healthy soy alternative to an ice cream sandwich without the unwanted calories and guilt.
Product Website
Grocery Store Archives
Our latest collection of on-line articles to help you stay focuses and fit.
Grocery Archives
 
Fitness
Pamela from Chihuahua, MexicoI work out 5 days a week and can't loose weight. I do spinning, tae bo and many types of cardio. Where am I going wrong?
Answer
Nutrition
Ross from Sidney, AustraliaI am currently trying to eat six small meals per day. Apart from breakfast and dinner, I always seem to forget or skip my meals during the day. I also need some simple, easy meals (snacks) that do not require refrigeration or preparation, apart from the obvious fruits.
Answer
Running
Amanda from Manitoba, CanadaWhat should I eat the morning of my track meet?
Answer
 


Warning: include(footer.php): failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 186

Warning: include(footer.php): failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 186

Warning: include(): Failed opening 'footer.php' for inclusion (include_path='.:/opt/php70/lib/php') in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 186


Warning: include(javascript/superstats.js): failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 189

Warning: include(javascript/superstats.js): failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 189

Warning: include(): Failed opening 'javascript/superstats.js' for inclusion (include_path='.:/opt/php70/lib/php') in /home2/infligi3/public_html/merlinofitness/sub_pages/articles_tips/sub_pages/nutrition_articles/truth_about_fad_diets.php on line 189