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There are good diets, and there are fad diets which can be dangerous. Distinguishing between the two can be rather confusing, but there are ways for you to check if a diet is good for you or not. These fad diets are personal trainer’s and nutritionist’s challenge – clients keep asking if a diet is good or not. To us, the best diet is one that allows you to eat healthy, in moderation and not starve.

You’d best steer clear of a diet when they contain the following factors.

It claims that you don’t need to exercise at all. This goes against the advice of anyone with an actual medical degree. Of course you need to exercise. It is actually mandatory for you to engage in regular physical activity. If you can’t go to a gym, then at the very least you need to find a physical activity you enjoy then you should do that for an hour (such as briskwalking, swimming, jogging or playing sports), for even just for 30 minutes. That’s the bare minimum, but a gym trainer can help you with exercises to do. See American College of Sports Medicine guideline hereIf a diet makes this claim, then you may as well forget about it since it already starts with an unscientific claim.

It promotes rapid weight loss. Either it won’t work or it will, but even if it does work then that doesn’t mean rapid weight loss is good for you. When you lose weight rapidly, you don’t lose just fat. You also lose water, muscle, and bone, and losing muscle and bone isn’t really all that good. In addition, you are also much likely to gain back the weight quickly afterwards. But this time it will be fat instead of muscle.

You’re supposed to follow rigid rules or menus. Sometimes these rules can be overly complicated or unforgiving, and the menu may also be very limiting. These things can surely tax your determination to stay on the diet. Remember, a real diet is one you can stay on indefinitely. So you have to ask yourself is this is a diet you see following for the rest of your life. If the answer is obviously no (you can’t even see yourself following it for six months), then just as obviously you need to avoid it.

You can eat certain foods in unlimited quantities. There are some diets which tell you that your main food is just a single dish, such as a particular soup or a specific fruit. This is not only unhealthy, but it’s also guaranteed to make you quit. That’s because this is really boring, and the monotony will eventually force you to break the rules of the diet. Also, this emphasis on one type of food and the avoidance of entire food groups can be detrimental to your health.  There are many personal trainers who tell their clients to cut back carbs altogether. It’s one thing to lessen your carb intake, for example, but it’s another thing entirely to avoid them altogether. You will certainly miss out on crucial nutrients you need, and not even multivitamins can compensate on a regular basis. Plus, carbs provide a direct source of energy so that you can perform your exercises well.

Some food, in combination, can result in weight loss. Some diet plans claim that only certain food combos are allowed. The wrong combinations, they say, can cause them to immediately turn to fat. This is not exactly supported by scientific data, and no viable proof has been shown to support these allegations. Remember, you need to diet and exercise. Programs that include both physical activity and nutrition guidelines can really help you find the right diet.

You cannot rely on unbelievable claims you see online or on TV. You need to exercise, and there is no magic food or pill that will cause your fat to disappear overnight. There’s nothing you can take that will alter your genetic code. You won’t be able to burn off fat while you sleep or sit on the couch as you watch TV. There are even some products which can be dangerous and make your extra weight the least of your worries.

It may seem that it’s a daunting task to eat healthy or in moderation at first, so it’s best to progressively move towards healthy eating. Once you get the hang of it, your body will automatically reject all food that’s unhealthy for you 🙂

Coach Sharm, MSc
sharm@teamfitnessguru.com

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