Is it intermittent fasting? Low carb? Low fat? Keto? Weight watchers? Slimming world? Or the 6-week get shredded FAST meal plan Sally is selling you to get you to drop two dress sizes in 6 weeks?
For the sake of society today (the obesity epidemic, in particular) I really wish that the answer was simple. The science is pretty simple but the practicality of it isn’t.
The number 1 reason ANY DIET WORKS EVER is because you are in a calorie deficit.
END OF CONVERSATION.
Don't know what a calorie deficit is? Chat with me!
More than often, someone is trying to tell you that ‘this diet’ (insert diet plan they are trying to sell here) works because of X, Y, Z.
You know all the bullsh** lines here they use for marketing – ‘With this diet, you don’t even need to exercise’, ‘with this diet, you can eat WHATEVER you want and still lose weight’, blah, blah, blah….
I want you to become acutely aware that IF the diet does in fact work, it works because that person is in a CALORIE DEFICIT.
Energy balance 101.
Calories in (Food & Drink) vs Calories out (Basal Metabolic Rate, Thermic Effect of Food, Non-exercise Activity Thermogenesis & Exercise Activity Thermogenesis) – See my recent post on Instagram for a full explanation of this.
There are other factors that are important to consider with regards to this, conditions such as PCOS, however, to keep things simple, for the sake of this post, diets work BECAUSE they put you in a calorie deficit.
To quote Emilia Thomson, PHD – ‘You don’t have to count calories but calories still count.’
In order of importance with regards to Fat loss:
1. Energy Balance
4. Meal Timing
5. Supplements (NOT DIET PILLS, BTW, throw them away)
The diet that works BEST is the one that works for you. Flexible dieting is probably the best approach as it allows people the freedom to eat the foods they like so they DO NOT feel restricted.
If you put someone on a strict diet and tell them they can’t have – pasta, chocolate, pizza, etc. It is never going to be SUSTAINABLE.
Tell someone not to think of a pink elephant, they are going to think of a pink elephant.
So, what works best?
It really depends on the person and ALL my clients are different.
This is why I feel one-to-one coaching is vital to people's success with regards to the sustainability of a 'diet', for want of a better word. I prefer to say - build better habits that are sustainable. Knowledge Empowers You - KEY!