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DIET FOR WEIGHT LOSS

  1. Atkins Diet

The Atkins diet is a low-carbohydrate diet, usually recommended for weight loss. Proponents of this diet claim that you can lose weight by eating as much protein and fat as you want, as long as you avoid foods high in carbs. In the past 12 years, over 20 studies have shown that low-carb diets are effective for weight loss (without calorie counting), and can lead to various health improvements.

 

The Atkins diet was originally promoted by a physician named Dr. Robert C. Atkins, who wrote a best-selling book about the diet in 1972. Since then, the diet has been studied thoroughly and shown to lead to more weight loss than low-fat diets, and greater improvements in blood sugar, HDL (good cholesterol), triglycerides and other health markers. Despite being high in fat, it does not raise LDL (bad cholesterol) cholesterol on average, although this does happen in some individuals. The main reason low-carb diets are so effective for weight loss, is that when people reduce carbohydrate intake and eat more protein, their appetite goes down and they end up automatically eating fewer calories without having to think about it.

 

Source: Atkins

 

Phases of the Atkins Diet:

 

  • Phase 1: Induction.In this strict phase, you cut out almost all carbohydrates from your diet, eating just 20 grams of carbs a day, mainly from vegetables. You should eat protein, such as fish, meat and eggs at every meal. You don’t need to restrict oils and fats, but you can’t have most fruits, sugary baked goods, breads, pastas, grains, nuts or alcohol. You should drink eight glasses of water a day. You stay in this phase for at least two weeks, depending on your weight loss.

 

  • Phase 2: Balancing.In this phase, you continue to eat a minimum of 12 to 15 grams of carbs from vegetables. You also continue to avoid foods with added sugar. You can slowly add back in some nutrient-rich carbs, such as berries, nuts, and seeds, as you continue to lose weight. You stay in this phase until you are about 4.5 kg from your goal weight.

 

  • Phase 3: Pre-maintenance.In this phase, you continue to gradually increase the range of foods you can eat, including fruits, starchy vegetables and whole grains. You can add about 10 grams of carbs to your diet each week, but you must cut back if your weight loss stops. You stay in this phase until you reach your goal weight.

 

  • Phase 4: Lifetime maintenance.You move into this phase when you reach your goal weight, and then you continue this way of eating for life.

 

  1. Volumetrics Diet

The Volumetrics diet is an eating plan that aims to help you quit on-and-off dieting by living a healthy lifestyle based on nutritious food and regular exercise. Developed by Dr. Barbara Rolls, the Volumetrics diet plan focuses on the energy density of foods. According to Dr. Rolls, awareness of the energy density of food, which is the number of calories in a specific amount of food, is the key to achieving healthy, long-term weight loss.

This low-calorie, high-volume eating plan includes foods with a lot of water and fibre, since both supposedly increase your sense of fullness. By eating low-calorie foods, you can eat as much as you’d like and eliminate the feelings of hunger and fatigue that often accompany other diets. It doesn’t ban any food, and you can enjoy calorie-packed foods as long as you stick within the recommended calorie intake.

What You Can Eat and What You Can’t:

You can eat anything, but you need to pay attention to “energy density,” which is the number of calories in a certain amount of food. Foods with high energy density have lots of calories, but foods with low energy density provide fewer calories with more volume.

Dr. Rolls splits foods into four categories:

Category 1 includes “free” or “anytime” fruits, non-starchy vegetables (such as broccoli, tomatoes, mushrooms), and broth-based soups.

Category 2 includes reasonable portions of whole grains (such as brown rice and whole wheat pasta), lean proteins, legumes, and low-fat dairy.

Category 3 includes small portions of foods such as breads, desserts, fat-free baked snacks, cheeses, and higher-fat meats.

Category 4 includes moderate portions of fried foods, candy, cookies, nuts, and fats.

Volumetrics provides a well-balanced guide to eating that incorporates exercise, which is just as important as food for achieving a healthy weight and lifestyle. You will evaluate your foods based on their calories and nutritional value, but you won’t have stringent rules about what’s healthy and what’s not.

 

  1. My Healthy Plate Diet

 

Source: HealthHub

 

My Healthy Plate shows you what a healthy, well-balanced meal looks like, by visually representing the correct proportions of different food groups you should eat on a simple plate. It serves as a guide to help you build balanced meals. It is not intended as a mandate to include all food groups at every meal or eat in a compartmentalised manner. Stick a copy of My Healthy Plate on the fridge at home or at work to remind yourself to eat well-balanced meals regularly.

My Healthy Plate Components:

  • Fill half your plate with fruit and vegetables. Fruit and vegetables are naturally low in saturated and trans-fat, and rich in dietary fibre, vitamins and minerals. They can help lower your risk of developing heart disease, stroke, and certain types of cancer. Fruit and vegetables also add delightful colours, textures and flavours to your diet. In fact, different colour pigments they contain serve up unique health benefits.
  • Fill a quarter with whole-grains. Wholegrain foods such as brown rice, wholemeal bread and rolled oats contain vitamins (vitamins B and E), minerals (iron, zinc and magnesium), phytochemicals (lignans, phytosterols) and inulin (a type of dietary fibre); all of which are good for a healthier you. Refined grains such as white rice or white bread have been processed, so valuable nutrients have been lost. Choosing whole-grains over refined grains means you get all the goodness that reduces the risk of developing heart disease and diabetes, while helping with weight management since you’ll feel full for longer periods.
  • Fill a quarter with meat and others. This category includes poultry (e.g. chicken, duck and turkey), meats (e.g. beef, mutton and pork), seafood, eggs, nuts, bean products and low-fat dairy products. Aim for 2 servings of fish per week. Oily fish (e.g. tuna, mackerel) contain omega-3 fatty acids – a beneficial fat that supports overall heart health.

 

Sources:

  1. Atkins https://www.atkins.com
  2. Mayo Clinic https://www.mayoclinic.org
  3. Healthline https://www.healthline.com
  4. WebMD https://www.webmd.com
  5. Health Hub https://www.healthhub.sg