Updated: Nov 17, 2021
There are a LOT of nutrition trends out there. If you google how to lose weight or get in shape you get up to 3 billion hits. If you just look at books for weight loss, you get about 70,000 to choose from. No wonder it is one of the most confusing and hot topics of discussion.
Every trend or fad comes with its own collection of success stories so how do you distinguish between trends/ fads and legit programs.
Here's an analogy that might explain this better. Have you ever had a gorgeous looking cake with the most intricate looking icing and taken a bite, only to find out the cake tasted awful?
Diet trends are like putting luxurious icing on a crappy cake. I can see "why" some people do it- its easy, convenient, it looks amazing on the outside, and sounds very promising.
Our body is the cake the the diet trends are the icing. Quick fixes don't work. Example:
Drinking lemon water will not work if you eat pizza and chips everyday.
Doing a 5 day detox won't help if you go back to overdoing the wine and cookies right after that.
Doing intermittent fasting will not help you lose weight if you are bingeing during your eating hours.
Going on a keto diet will not work if you follow it during the week and load up on carbs on the weekends.
Drinking shakes all day won't work if you can't sustain it past a month.
Stress eating won't disappear when you go on a diet.
Emotional eating will not disappear unless you address your triggers and your mindset.
Our body is the same way, we just need to take the time to help them change from the inside out instead of covering them up with quick fixes and fads.
Here are some quick questions to ask yourself before you try the next hyped up trend/ fad:
Question 1: Is it sustainable?
This is the quickest way to identify a trend vs a permanent solution. Ask yourself, "Can I do this for the rest of my life?"
Example: A meal plan that asks you to give up food groups like carbs may sound like a very promising way to lose weight, but will you be able to sustain that for the rest of your life or will you give up out of frustration and do more damage?
No matter how promising it sounds, we need to think long term when it comes to following a way of eating.
Question 2: Is it backed by science?
A lot of trends are not really backed by science but still promise amazing results.
Example: There are sauna slimming sweat pants that make you "sweat" 5-7 times more than usual. These pants are marketed as a great way to shed weight fast. While you may lose a few lbs of water weight when you sweat more(and possibly cause you to become dehydrated), there is NO scientific proof that sweating more can help you lose "fat". A 30 minute workout done with or without the "high sweat" pants will yield the same fat loss.
Question 3: Is it promoting overall health?
Eating clean is about nourishing your body, not punishing it. It is important to read labels and understand what is in the food you are consuming.
Example: A lot of companies provide "ready to eat" meals delivered to your door which may be convenient but a closer look at these low calorie foods shows that they are high in fat, sodium and preservatives which can be harmful to your body.
Question 4: Is it empowering?
Do you feel empowered by the program you are following? Does it educate you on the importance of nourishing your body vs punishing your body?
Example: A ketogenic diet promotes rapid weight loss but it makes you give up carbs or limit them tremendously. In my experience if a program asks you to eliminate and entire food group, it tends itself to deprivation which can lead to feeling disempowered. If you have had an unhealthy relationship with food, then this kind of approach can be detrimental to your physical and emotional health.
Question 5: Does it work for YOU?
There are so many programs and each one has enough success stories to convince you of their validity. But you know your health history better than anyone else, so it is very important that you take into account your lifestyle, your relationship with food, your goals before you embark on a wellness journey.
Example: Ask yourself if you can commit to a program and have the discipline to follow it yourself or do you need more accountability and support. Some people can easily follow DIY programs while others need to get extra help. Or if a program requires you to live on liquid shakes all day, is that something you can do easily or will it drive you crazy?
We disrespect our bodies by putting processed, unhealthy, fast foods in them all the time and then we try to make it up by torturing and depriving our bodies for a short period thinking it will undo all the damage.
Let's focus on our strengths and educate ourselves so we can get long lasting sustainable results. We are unique and so is our body. Let's respect that and work on our cake- our foundations- nourish it and nurture it with love and long lasting habit changes that will serve us forever.
If you need a "fitness audit" of your current regimen, I offer complimentary discovery sessions where we will look through all your current habits and identify the missing links keeping you from getting to your goals.
Blogger bio: Chitra Rochlani is a NASM certified weight loss and body transformation coach. Chitra empowers her clients to break free of the diet mentality and develop a high speed metabolism using fitness, nutrition and mindset tools. She believes that her personal weight loss transformation and work with hundreds of clients gives her a unique perspective in an industry focused on quick fixes and gimmicks. She uses her "Fit Warrior" method to combine nutrition, fitness and mindset to help her clients look, feel and perform at their best.