Current Diets that Work

Diet Did I Eat That?
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When looking into the most popular diets, and how people are affected by all the hype that surrounds them.

One question always pops up. Which are the current diets that work?

Let’s look at the top trending diets from 2018 and examine how they work.

Starting the research for this article reveal some surprises on which diets were inb the top five for 2018.

2018 year

Interestingly, the diets that I initially thought were the top five were not even on the list!

Just goes to show you how quickly things change and how we can miss something when not careful.

Here is the list off the top five diets for 2018:

  1. DASH Diet
  2. Mediterranean Diet
  3. The Flexitarian Diet
  4. Weight Watchers Diet
  5. MIND Diet

In the next section we will break down the diets and give a summary from the articles use in my research.

Search Articles on Diets

The DASH Diet is an acronym for “dietary approaches to stop hypertension.”

A balanced diet that approaches food in much the same way that doctors have been suggesting for years.

Doctor recommended diet.

The following list is what to focus on eating:

  • Fresh fruits and vegetables – four to five servings per day.
  • Whole grains – six to eight servings per day.
  • Lean meats – six or fewer ounces per day
  • Low-fat dairy products – two to three servings per day
  • Salt – 1500 to 2300 milligrams per day
  • Alcohol – Limit to one or two drinks per day. Better none!

People on the Mediterranean Diet are focused on eating mostly fruits and vegetables, at least two or more times a week.

Olive oil is a common ingredient in Mediterranean recipes, and mostly used in the salad dressings.

Mediterranean diet

The Mediterranean Diet is much more liberal in what you can eat, but here is what to focus on:

  • Fruits and veggies – six to seven servings per day.
  • Beans – minimum one serving a day.
  • Whole grains – five to six servings per day.
  • Meat & poultry – limit once per week.
  • Cook with garlic and herbs
  • Only use olive or canola oil for cooking.

Flexitarian Diet is a play on words, combining flexible and vegetarian.

This diet was coined form a book back in 2009 from dietitian Dawn Jackson Blatner, contending that one can reap benefits from being vegetarian (most of the time) and eat some meat occasionally.

The focus is not on the amount of servings per day but as follows:

  • Reducing meals with meat from 6-8 out of the normal 21 meals per week; to more than 15 meals out of the 21 per week, without meat.
  • Tofu
  • Beans
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Eggs and dairy
  • Fruits and veggies
  • Sugar and spices

Weight Watchers uses a point system that they call SmartPoints. Every food and beverage are assigned a point value for its nutritional value.

Weight Watchers

Some dietary options that carry a zero-point value and allowed to eat without costing the participant any points.

Depending on your BMI and your age, sex and a few other factors the participant has an assigned a number to stay below per day.

This program encourages them to choose the food choices wisely and changes the behavior pattern of the individual.

The following Are on the zero-point list:

  • Fruits and veggies
  • Eggs, Fish and Seafood
  • Skinless chicken breast
  • Corn, beans, and peas

The MIND Diet is an acronym for “Mediterranean-Dash Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay.

MIND Diet takes two proven diets DASH and Mediterranean diets and chooses food that focus on affect the brain.

Mental Health

The goal is to reduce the risk of mental decline.

Studies show that participants reduced the risk of Alzheimer’s by 35% if followed moderately and 53% for those who followed rigorously.

The following are what to focus on consuming:

  • Green leafy vegetables (in particular) and all other vegetables as well.
  • Nuts, Berries, Beans
  • Whole grains, Olive oil, Wine
  • Fish and Poultry

Purpose Diet – Why do Most People Diet?

Most people will go on a diet to lose weight.

Statistics show that about 45 million people will start a diet for their new year’s resolution!

xperts believe that less than 5% of dieters will keep the weight off long term.

With 70% of the adults in the United States, overweight or obese. The problem is something that needs to have more attention.

For me, everything changed because of my health deteriorating and with the diagnoses of type 2 diabetes.

Even with my previous attempts at changing my lifestyle it was not enough.

Now that drastic measures have been taken my health is turning around and getting better by the day.

What is your purpose?

The purpose for someone to change their eating habits; with a desire to make it permanent, is what people need to establish to improve their diets.

Before the thought were always the same, get the weight off and then everything is going to be okay.

After all; the extra weight was not stopping me from doing what I wanted to do! Or at least that was the thoughts going through my head.

But the truth was, it hampered me from doing what I wanted.

There are many issues that people go through in the daily lives that affect the choices we make about our diets.

Facing the hard choice is going to take getting yourself ready to accept that you are going to do some things that you don’t want to do.

Like finding ways to refuse food that is not good for you, especially from people who are trying to be nice!

That is the hardest thing to do in our culture in Texas where we are taught to be nice and accept food when offered, to reject it is considered rude.

Coming from bosses at the job it is even worse.

Luckily people are becoming more health conscious, and they understand it when you explain that you are on a strict diet plan.

I will blame it on the Doctors, which is not a lie, they have me under instruction to eat right, but it is the best way to get others off of your back!

Why People Do Not Diet

For years my motto was to be “Fat & Happy” I did not care about the extra weight.

Being one of the strongest around was more important to me. And dieting does not make you stronger!

With rational thinking comes the tendency to think about making healthier choices.

Dieting is something that many people start and give up on more than anything else that people do.

Probably because we all must eat and restricting what we eat just does not come naturally to most of us.

Someone can change the way they look at food going on a diet is probably not going to work.

We need to eat to live, and not live to eat!

This saying is something that a good friend of mine always says when the subject comes up in conversation, both of us would still laugh about it, especially when not eating right!

Current Health Topic News

When it comes to diet choices, the ones that are getting more attention is the Intermittent Fasting and the controversy around whether it is right for you or not.

It does matter which method of intermittent fasting we are talking about starting.

My Doctor recommended Intermittent fasting

In some research this year they talk about the 5:2 method (referring to five days with and two days without food).

This method can lead to type 2 diabetes because of the stretches without food can throw off insulin levels and damage pancreatic cells.

What I have been doing at the suggestion of my Doctor, is the 16:8 version of intermittent fasting where you eat during an eight-hour window and fasting the remaining 16 hours.

What works best for me is to skip breakfast, then eat lunch at 11:00 am.

Keeping the same foods that are good for diabetics, and do not eat more than I usually would for the day.

This diet is something that is quickly becoming a habit and a lifestyle that I can stick with for the long haul.

It has helped me to resume losing weight again, and I stalled at the 35-pound mark for two months.

That is with eating a diabetic diet low in carbs and with 1800 – 2000 calories limit.

Now keeping the same diabetic diet and with the same limits on calories, the only difference is eating between 11 a.m. and 7 p.m.

This last month I have dropped an additional 10 pounds. And my clothes are fitting loser.

Conclusion

The best suggestion would be to look at the diet that you are considering.

Ask yourself; is this something that you can live with for a long time and make it part of your routine?

Diet, did I eat that?

If the answer is no; then why would you even begin?

The up and down cycle that comes from starting then stopping diets will ultimately cause more weight gain in the long run.

It is so important to discuss any significant changes that you are considering, and they can give you some excellent advice and point out something to be watched.

Thanks for stopping by and reading this article, and please leave any comments, suggestion, or questions in the section below, we will respond to all.

20 thoughts on “Current Diets that Work

  1. So I tried 3 out of the 5 diets mentioned in here, and I’ve got to say…it was hard, hard to getting used to.

    First one being the DASH diet of course, I have been on this particular diet for 6 months before I moved on to a different one, and yes, my doctor recommended me on this one.

    The mediterranean diet is was on was mainly based on fruits, a little bit of vegetable here and there, but mainly fruits, and I have been on this for 3 months as well

    And the last one I tried and am still on is, the MIND diet. It’s a mix between the DASH and the Mediterranean diet. Been on this diet for almost a year now and still going strong! 

    1. Thanks for your comment Isaac, just curious to know if you have had any success on these diets? Many people are struggling to lose weight and it is always good to know when someone is having good results with a diet plan.  

  2. I am wondering how weightwatchers modifies the point system in relation to fried foods. You said that fish and seafood caries zero points. But what if the fish was fried such as fish and chips for example? Do you then add points to it so that it reflects a true accurate measurement of what one needs to change in regards to a diet?

    1. When I did the Weight Watchers you counted points for been fried, even if it was on the zero-point list. And potatoes were not on the zero-point list.

      The weight watchers plan did not work for me, I think it was because it gave me too many points and I had not got serious enough about weight loss to cut my own numbers. I really liked the plan and it was easy to do. 

  3. I would like to start my asking a question, do you think having a goal other than losing weight only might help. Please let me explain. You wrote in your article, in part, people need to change their eating habits with a desire to make it permanent, I agree. I am speaking from some personal experience. For example, I have found that having a goal that goes along with losing weight, I find it easier to lose weight by thinking of others. My dear wife has Parkinson’s and if I don’t take care of myself, then how am I going to care for her? I feel this gives me the drive I need to lose weight, however, I still have a struggle to lose weight and have to be reminded from time to time, such as you have done! In the long run though it helps to be thinking of someone besides myself.

    1. Thanks for your comment Lonnie; you bring up a very good point, it is much better to be doing things for others. It can be a big motivational factor when you are the primary caregiver to a loved one, after all they are depending on you!

      Losing weight will fall into the two categories superficial or psychological and you are referring to the psychological motivation where it is not about the physical benefits but based on something coming from a sense of purpose instead.

      Here is a post on motivation: How Does Motivation Hurt Our Health 

  4. Wow I was surprised too! I thought the Intermittent Fasting and Ketogenic Diet will make the top 5. Well what does that tell you everyone? When I see the description for the DASH diet, I did not even know that this thing exist lol Without even aware of it I follow that regimen everyday. I guess my rule is portion control. If something is too sugary or rich in fat, I will have a few bites and stop myself. But lets be real sometimes I finish the whole thing lol If that happens I might cut on there snacks or eat something lighter for my next meal. For drinks, so tricky but I try to have 2 portions a day but ended up drinking more than I should lol If that happens what I usually do is If that day I have a lot of drinks, I will not have desserts or sweet. Food is definitely plays the biggest part in the diet journey, exercise is only 20% part of it. In my opinion, If we all focus on other activities that do not involve food, we will stop thinking too much about it and eat to much of it. Find something that you like to do and enjoy it. 

    That is my opinion, what do you think?

    1. Thanks for your comment, I was just as surprised about the Intermittent Fasting and Keto as you! 

      With all the hype around them two, I was expecting to cover more on the Intermittent Fasting because of my own personal experience.

      It makes more sense to follow the moderation rule than to try anything in the extremes. Balanced lifestyle with good portion control on the size of your meals and finding something to keep you active that you like doing is the key.

  5. Thanks for the great article! I have always thought that the most effective diet is one that is healthy and that you can stick to. As you mention in your post, if you don’t think you can stick to a diet, is there really much reason to move forward with it? I have several family members who have tried the Keto Diet (which once I found out ice cream and pizza were no-no’s, I said, “No, no”!) and I, myself, have given intermittent fasting a trial run. 

    Ultimately, I found that eating a balanced, Mediterranean style, diet was what worked for me.

    Thanks again for the information on other types of diets though! This will be extremely helpful!

    1. Thanks for your comment, I was leaning towards the Keto diet a few months ago because of the success that a friend of mine had. But even he was not recommending it for me.

      That was because of the preciseness of the amount of fat, protein, and carbs that you have to maintain. If your do not hit it just right you can do more damage than good. 

      Plus, it is not a good balance to try and change your eating habits for good. 

  6. Thank you for sharing with us this great post about diets.Our body is our treasure so we need to give value to it and feed it with great diets.

    These days taking balanced diet became a puzzle because we are busy working and processed food became popular even if it is not good to our body.

    We need to take diet which is very useful to our health to live well

    1. Thanks for your comment, your right about it feeling like a puzzle. The more I learn about processed food the more convinced that we should avoid it as much as possible.

      The hard part is finding the time and energy to get the fresh ingredients and have the place to process it on the job site. Many have to carry a lunch without a refrigerator, and that makes it much more difficult.

  7. I have been on a Vegetarian diet for two months now. I stopped myself from eating meat, and I have to say, it wasn’t the easiest thing to do. I had my ups and downs, but fortunately I am able to stick to it thanks to my daily routine. One of the things I love is what you said your good friend says when the subject comes up ‘We need to eat to live and not live to eat’.

    That is such a powerful dieting quote and can and will definitely inspire a lot of People. Thank you for your inspiration and your amazing article.

    1. Thanks for commenting Solomon, that saying a good way to remind ourselves what our goals are when temptation hits us hard. It seems to hit you the hardest when you’re not ready for it. 

      You are right that our routines can save us or cause us to fall depending on how well it is set up and how well we follow it. Sounds like you are having success with yours, keep up the good work!

  8. I think that this article is very helpful and informative. I like to try new diets even when I don’t need to lose pounds because I want to clean my body out of toxins and develop a discipline. Mediterranean diet is a great way to lose pounds and I like the idea to eat only fresh fruits and vegetables. I did not heard about MIND diet, it sounds pretty interesting.

    1. Thanks for the comment Daniel, it is good to be open to trying new things in your diet that can help get you what you are looking for. 

      I have always liked the idea of cleaning out the toxins, but have not seen a real good way to measure how good of job anything is doing.

      When you clean something out like a tank or vessel you can inspect it afterwards and see how it looks. With our bodies we can only look at test.

  9. Such low success rates from dieting on the long term is that it is seen as a diet rather than a lifestyle change. Just changing what you eat for a period of time until the desired amount of weight is loss is not all that is needed. These diets you discuss look fantastic especially if one is adopted as a permanent eating plan. I love the sound of the mind diet, very interesting i amy need to lok into this one more.

    1. Thanks for your comments and I agree that it must be a lifestyle change in order to be effective over the long term. The interesting part of the MIND diet is that they used what was already proven and then focused on the foods that help the brain.

  10. Nice website content and references, congratulations! As a nurse I’m curious if any of this was personal to you? As always good information is a plus, but you gave no personal recommendations, insights, or experiences so it makes me curious. Perhaps, without giving out any medical advise you could tell the readers why you see benefits of one over another if you aren’t recommending one! 

    I hope this was a helpful constructive criticism and keep up the good work!

    1. Thanks for your comments and I am always open for some criticism; doesn’t matter if it is constructive or not. 

      Maybe it did not come across very clear, but the section “Current Health Topic News” is where I am describing what I have been doing under my Doctor’s advice. 

      Using the Intermittent Fasting method 16:8 and also restricting my diet to 1800-2000 calorie per day with diabetic friendly foods. This has got my weight to start dropping again, up to a total of 45 pounds now. 

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