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Diet trends of 2023: Doctor highlights pros and cons

Diet trends of 2023: Doctor highlights pros and cons Advantages and disadvantages of the most famous diets of 2023 (photo: freepik.com)

Countless diets have gained widespread popularity. Many bloggers and experts build their careers around magical dietary methods, which often can lead to negative health consequences. Some of the diets mentioned in this article are still practiced among women and are presented as a quick and safe way to lose weight, although they are not.

Doctor and health expert Ulyana Verner shared with RBC-Ukraine information about diets that negatively impact a person's health.

Extremely low-calorie diets

Dietary regimens that restrict calorie intake to a very low level, typically well below the recommended daily amount. These diets may include fewer than 800-1000 calories per day, significantly below the norm for many individuals.

The goal of such diets is often rapid weight loss. The idea is that reducing calorie intake leads to an energy deficit, where the body burns more energy than it receives from food, thereby promoting weight loss. However, these diets have some serious drawbacks and risks:

  1. Lack of nutrients: Low-calorie diets can lead to insufficient intake of vitamins, minerals, proteins, and other essential nutrients. This can cause health problems such as loss of muscle mass, weakened immune system, and skin issues.
  2. Slow metabolism: Prolonged calorie restriction can cause the body to switch to a more economical metabolism. This can result in a slowdown in the rate of calorie burning, complicating further weight loss.
  3. Health risks: Such diets can cause serious health issues, including metabolic disorders, hypoglycemia (low blood sugar levels), deficiency of fat-digesting enzymes, impaired concentration, fatigue, depression, and other negative consequences.
  4. Weight regain: Many people who use low-calorie diets may return to their usual eating habits after completing the diet. This can lead to a rapid regain of weight and even an increase in weight.

The effectiveness and safety of low-calorie diets over the long term are quite doubtful. Instead of extreme calorie restrictions, it is recommended to adopt a balanced approach to nutrition, incorporating a variety of foods, vitamins, minerals, an adequate amount of proteins and fats, as well as physical activity.

To achieve a healthy weight, it is advisable to consult with a doctor or dietitian who can develop a nutrition plan tailored to your individual needs.

Diets based on a single food item or a group of products

Diets based on a single food item or a group of products are types of eating patterns in which a significant portion of the diet is built around a specific food item or category of products.

Such diets may encourage the consumption of a particular type of food in large quantities while restricting other products or groups of products. The main idea is that the chosen product is believed to promote weight loss or improve health.

However, mono-diets have their drawbacks and risks:

  1. Insufficient nutrients: By limiting your diet to a single food item, you risk not getting all the necessary nutrients, such as vitamins, minerals, proteins, and fats that the body needs for normal functioning.
  2. Monotony in diet: Consuming only one type of food can lead to a sense of limitation, potentially resulting in frequent disruptions and nervous tension.
  3. Risk of imbalance: Relying on a single product, you risk not providing the body with the necessary diversity of nutrients it needs for healthy functioning.
  4. Loss of muscle mass: Some diets, such as fruit-based or juice diets, may lead to the loss of muscle mass as they may be low in protein.

Weight loss can result from fluid loss or a temporary reduction in calorie intake. After finishing such a diet, if you return to your usual eating habits, there is a risk of weight regain or even an increase in weight.

Diets based on superfoods

Diets using superfoods are built on the idea that certain products have a high content of nutrients, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals that contribute to improving health and help maintain weight control.

These products are often called superfoods due to their high nutritional value. They can include vegetables, roots, seeds, nuts, leafy greens, fish, berries, and dairy products. Examples are salmon, kale, blueberries, acai, chia seeds, and quinoa.

However, diets based on superfoods have some drawbacks and risks:

  1. Overemphasis: a biased focus on superfoods can lead to an overemphasis on their importance and the exclusion of other essential food groups from the diet. Balanced nutrition is more important than selecting individual "healthy" foods.
  2. Cost: many superfoods can be expensive or hard to access, making them inaccessible to everyone. This can contribute to economic inequality in access to healthy food.
  3. Lack of research: the benefits of superfoods are based on research data that have not yet received sufficient scientific support. It is important to critically review the evidence before making significant changes to your diet.
  4. Diets without diversity: the idea of consuming only superfoods can lead to a lack of diversity in the diet. Diverse nutrition is essential for obtaining a wide range of nutrients.
  5. Relative importance of nutrients: while superfoods may be rich in nutrients, consuming them in large quantities does not guarantee automatic health benefits or weight loss. Balanced consumption of a variety of foods is crucial.

Regarding the possibility of long-term weight loss, diets based on superfoods can contribute to healthy eating, which may help control weight. However, excessive fascination with "magical" products can lead to unrealistic expectations regarding weight loss or health improvement.

Avoid extreme diets that can be dangerous to health. Remember that weight loss is a process that requires time, patience, and consistency. The best approach is to set realistic goals based on a balanced lifestyle and focus not only on weight loss but also on improving your overall health.

Earlier, we talked about which foods help the body produce collagen.

We also wrote about how to eat in winter to maintain health.