Last Updated on May 31, 2016 by Michael Brockbank
Not all diet plans work the same. Although many will have a lot of the same theories and ideas behind their functionality, they can differ in profound ways. Personally, I don’t really hold much stock in most diet plans floating around mainstream media. I take more of a Buddhist approach to eating – everything in moderation. However, I’ve seen many commercialized products perform exceptionally well for others. What are some things you should consider when choosing the right plan for your needs?
Picking the Right Diet Plans
There are tons of different plans available on the Internet. Experts will all chime in about the best way to lose weight and become fit. From paleolithic-era-inspired meal planning to having food delivered to you from Weight Watchers, they can all sound ideal. However, not all diet plans will be conducive to your success. Some of them may also have potential to hurt you. Consider these points before committing money, time and effort into following something that may not be the best fit for you.
1. What kinds of foods can you have?
Some diets center around specific foods you can eat and others you should stay away from. For example, the Paleo diet includes foods that humans would have consumed during the paleolithic era; fruits and nuts. What if you’re allergic to nuts? And lets not forget that humans are omnivores – which is why we have two different styles of teeth in our mouth. Don’t get me wrong, it may be a good idea and could help you lose weight. Just make sure the foods in the product are those you can handle. Also bear in mind that you don’t want to deny your body certain vitamins or minerals by staying away from certain foods. It could cause a variety of issues. For example, I know someone personally who contracted gout while on the Atkins diet. You gotta watch your intake closely.
2. Do you personally know someone who has succeeded on the diet?
One of the biggest things you need to consider is false information. Anyone can make up a testimonial that puts their product in a positive light. In one instance, I saw a testimonial with a picture of someone taken directly from ShutterStock.com – the website which sells images to people and organizations. Word of mouth from actual people you know can be one of the best ways to weed out the plans that work and the ones that are questionable. For example, my wife is on “Lean for Life.” Even though you can buy their products to help in the diet, the only thing you really need is the book. My wife has lost a lot of weight simply by following it’s guidelines without making special or extra purchases. If I wanted to join her, I already have an idea of how well it worked simply by looking at her.
3. How much will it cost to sustain the diet?
This is another big point you should consider. Not everyone can afford the extras which come from certain commercialized weight loss products. I know we can’t. This is one of the biggest reasons why I’ve developed my own plan for losing weight. I center the attention on proper portion sizes. Instead of spending more money each month, we actually cut our grocery bills by literally hundreds of dollars per month. Not all diet plans will require a monetary investment, however. Just make sure the plan you pick is something you can sustain financially over the long term.
4. Have you searched for complaints or problems from those on the diet in question?
Before committing to anything that has potential to alter your body, you should always do a bit of research. Google is an invaluable tool when looking for information regarding any product. Search for whether or not people have had issues while on the diet plan in question. This can be done by adding any of the following after the diet name in a search engine such as Google:
- allergic reactions
These are only a handful of search terms you can use. Make sure you sift through the results for a few pages to make sure that valuable information isn’t buried within the results.
5. Do you plan to include weight training?
Weight training can greatly alter the type of food you can handle. When lifting weights, your body will consume a great deal of carbohydrates, sugars and proteins in order to create as much sustainable energy as possible. If you use products such as Lean for Life, it can be incredibly easy to pass out from over exertion. I am attesting to this from personal experience. In 2014, I was trying to add more muscle mass while losing weight. The foods I was eating according to diet plans were not helping my body sustain the workout. My blood pressure dropped rapidly and I was constantly fatigued. Now, I don’t have a problem since I eat portion sizes of what ever I want. My point is make sure the plan you choose is beneficial for weight training if you are looking to pump some iron.
6. Is there a social group you can become a part of for the diet?
Never underestimate the value of the social element when dieting. It’s always good to have others who share your vision of health. It can be an inspiring experience as you can make friends and share experiences. Thanks to the Internet, it’s quite easy to find groups that are centered around any one specific dietary product. If you can’t find one, you can always create your own using sites like Facebook to develop a group.
7. Do the claims sound too good to be true?
Always question the claims of any weight loss product. Losing a certain number of pounds per week requires far too many variables that any one manufacturer will put into practice. For instance, personal physique, daily physical activity and personal sleeping patterns will greatly alter the outcome of diet plans. I once mentioned how a Bowflex machine claimed to burn 150 calories in 15 minutes on average. Playing the Xbox Kinect helps me burn far more calories in the same amount of time. Needless to say, I didn’t buy the Bowflex. Try not to be attracted to the glitter of the product. Each person is different, and what helps one person may not offer the same results to another.
A lot of people get sucked into the media circus when new diets pop up. Each one will claim to be the best, but it really depends on your personal needs and requirements. Not all diet plans will have your best interests in mind. A large portion of these were developed for the sole purpose of making money. Identify plans that are helpful to you, not what some celebrity or “testimonial” states on the website.