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Beware of FAD DIETS!

Posted By Dakota Fields, Complex Director, Western Illinois University, Monday, August 27, 2018

You hear about them all the time, Fad Diets, but how much good can these really do?

The real answer is: it depends on you!

To name a few: Paleo, Keto, and the Whole 30. There are more, I am sure, but these are the first few to come to mind. Now, are these diets bad? No. They focus on clean eating, better habits, and cutting unhealthy foods. I’m going to focus on Paleo, since I did that for one month during grad school.

Paleo focuses on clean eating and cutting out processed foods, additives, and excess sugars. You can eat lean meats, veggies, fruits, and nuts. At first glance, that sounds like a lot of food, and it really is, but then we think of what we can’t eat: dairy, legumes (this includes peanuts and peas), most liquids (if you’re a creamer and sugar coffee person, nope! now you can only drink it black), no breads/wheat, no cooking/using oils (except olive oil in a salad), and no corn. You cut out a lot more than you think, especially, nowadays with how normal it is to just “grab and go.”

There are pros and cons to these diets, just like any healthy eating practice:

  • Quick Pros: Promotes clean eating, restores natural energy levels, can cut weight
  •  Quick Cons: Long term commitment, can be expensive, incorporating old diet practices can mess up progress

The con of “long term commitment” is probably the most difficult, but why? To maintain the benefits of these diets, you have to commit for long term, there is a small window for flexibility. With Paleo specifically, I did it for that month, and cut some good weight. However, the next month, when I went to my normal eating habits, not unhealthy per say, but drinking cream and sugar coffee, snacks from time to time, and so on, the weight slowly came back. My body was so used to not having it for a month, but when it was introduced back in, the progress I made was lost.

Now for me, I just did it for a month to see if I could do it. I felt better, I looked better, but it was not cheap. If you are someone who can commit to this diet or lifestyle, then more power to you, but remember, there is little from for flexible eating. Short term benefits and long term benefits are only possible with lifestyle changes and that’s what these “diets” are meant for. Do you want to diet or change your lifestyle and that’s why the answer to these working well or not, depends on you. 

Tags:  #wellness #SAPro #SAGrad #GLACUHO #H_W #diets #hea 

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