The start of a new year brings the start of a new diet for many Arkansans – and there are countless options to choose from. Here are a few of the fad diets you’ll hear most about in 2018 – and the way you should eat for your most nutritious year yet.
Most Popular Diets in 2018
Many of the 2018 diets skew toward low-carb, high-protein and/or high-fat eating plans, with the exception of two – the raw foods diet and the alkaline diet. Both are either predominately or completely plant-based. The raw foods diet consists of eating only raw fruits, vegetables and legumes. The alkaline diet does allow cooked food, but involves eating only alkaline foods and avoiding acidic foods. While the increased consumption of produce in these diets is good, the extensive planning needed for each to work makes them time-consuming and difficult to follow. There is also little scientific research to support these plans, and the possible benefits aren’t likely to be worth the effort.
The Ketogenic (keto) Diet involves eating high-fat and extremely low-carb to put the body into ketosis – a state that increases the breakdown of fat stores. Like the keto diet, the Dukan Diet also utilizes low-carb eating to put the body into ketosis, though carb-counting isn’t encouraged. The Dukan Diet is also higher in protein than the keto diet. Though ketosis is technically a state of survival, there is research supporting its benefits for those who need to lose weight or regulate blood sugar.
The last popular diet, Whole30, is a 30-day nutritional reset meant to help the body correct imbalances and reduce inflammation. This involves cutting highly-processed foods, sugar, artificial sweeteners, alcohol, grains, legumes, soy and dairy. Though Whole30 is restrictive and difficult to follow at times, the 30-day timeframe makes it manageable for most people.
There are pros and cons to all of this year’s popular diets, and some have more benefits than others. If you were to ask us which one gets our recommendation though, we’d say none. Instead, follow a simple, nutritious plan you can maintain, and avoid temporary diets. Focus on consuming plenty of fruits, vegetables and other produce along with protein, healthy fats and high-fiber whole grains. We do recommend significantly limiting artificial and added sugars, but you should still indulge in your favorite treats now and then without guilt –simply limit the portion size! Keep your home stocked with healthy options, and reserve less-nutritious dishes for special events or an occasional restaurant meal.
A nutritious diet is the base for a healthy, happy life, and we want to help you create your best eating habits yet in 2018. Learn more about nutrition and get healthy recipe ideas by exploring the BHealthy Blog, or if you are looking for a more structured, easy-to-follow plan, check out our Baptist Health Weight Loss Program.