I’m sure all of you are aware of these radical shake diets that require you to purchase hundreds of pounds worth of meal replacement shakes and follow a strict plan. Examples include: The Cambridge Weight Plan, Herbalife, Celebrity Diet and Slimfast.
These diets are in fact often successful in the short term, however in the long term can lead to weight gain and an unhealthy relationship with food. Following the plan results in an extreme calorie deficit, which will ultimately result in weight loss but once you go back to eating normal food even if it isn’t unhealthy the higher calorie intake will mean that you put on weight, due to mechanistic changes in your metabolism and how the body processes calories it has adjusted to the lower intake. The body actually works best at a higher calorie intake which means you should eat more but exercise more to get the best out of your bodies capabilities to be efficient.
The answer to this is eating a healthy, balanced diet in a way which is sustainable over a long period of time. Basically, include bad foods in your diet because cutting them out completely isn’t a long term fix. There is no such thing as an unhealthy food, just bad portions.
Eat whole foods, cook for yourself and have sensible portion sizes whilst leading an active lifestyle and over time you will create a new lifestyle which is sustainable and second nature. Let’s face it buying whole foods and cooking yourself is often cheaper than unhealthy foods and quicker if you order a takeaway, your weight and health is in your own hands and it’s much simpler than you think.