Ritika Dua’s friends call her “diet queen”. One to be always on a diet, this 28- year-old, will tell you everything about the latest diet fads, where to procure diet food and how to manage hunger pangs. And yet, ask her how much weight she has lost by following a diet, she has little to offer. “I jump from one diet to another every few weeks. I look for quick results,” Dua rues.
People in the know may tell her how fad diets leads to more harm than any use. “Our bodies are made in the kitchen and to maintain a healthy living we constantly should aim at eating well and if possible go for farm to table concept,” says fitness expert Sucheta Pal, ambassador and educator of Zumba Fitness.
“Fads are what we call as temporary madness, owing to its short-termed nature of obsession over them. Despite this, these seemingly innocuous acts of enthusiasm may prove to be more deadly than one can imagine,” says Neha Pathania, chief dietictian, Paras Hospital, Gurugram. As for fad diets, their detrimental effects have been extolled by doctors at innumerable instances. And yet, 2019 can also be christened as the year of fad diets as an upsurge of these have been seen on a global scale. “Diets such as Intermittent, Keto, Paleo, Juice Cleanse and Vegan, have been burning through the weightwatchers circuit,” she adds.
ON THE CIRCUIT
Most often diets carry a negative connotation. “Fad Diets are those which are purely non-scientific imbalanced in terms of micro nutrients and macro nutrients. These generally work short term however in the long run they lead to a lot of deficiencies and long term damage to your system,” explains Delnaaz T Chanduwadia, chief dietician, Jaslok Hospital and Research Centre, Mumbai. In the last two years the diets which has caught on to everyone’s fancy is Intermittent Fasting, Keto Diet and the Vegan diet.
While the Keto Diet is a very low-carb, high-fat diet, Intermittent Fasting focuses on eating for eight hours of the day and fasting for the rest. “When we follow a diet we are eliminating many food groups thereby leading to deficiencies and loss of muscle mass. This leads to a drop in metabolism,” says Chanduwadia.
HOW IT WORKS
Every diet works differently. “There is no denying that different bodies should morph their diets to suit requirements it’s as simple as the concept of different fit for different people,” says Pathania. The human physique is shaped owing to a variety of factors and these factors should be kept in mind while launching into yet another diet, she explains. The effectiveness depends upon tailor-making diets according to your body variances. “Staying away from sugar, understanding your body composition, incorporating exercises with optimal affect are a few things that one should keep in mind,” she adds.
One of the biggest fads that Pal has seen people follow is Slimming Tea. “No tea can make a slimmer you. What it can do if taken in right quantities is provide antioxidants for your body,” she says. She advises her clients to never follow a random diet plan or exercises taken straight off the internet. “It cannot be suited to you as you have a unique body composition, genetic makeup and goal to achieve.”
Fad diets should be treated with a pinch of salt. “Having honey and lemon water in the morning does not make us lose fat. Skipping meals only make us lose muscle mass. A fruits only diet is highly overrated as it does not fulfill our nutritional requirements,” says Pravesh Gaur, diet expert, founder & director, Srauta Wellness.
Having a balanced meal with good amount of fibre, good quality protein, fatty acids and complex carbs will help us in losing fat faster than any diet.
Make sure your diet is planned by a qualified nutritionist, the food/ingredients are easily available and it is a sustainable plan. “A qualified nutritionist will take a detailed recall, explain what is incorrect with your current pattern, and fix it on the basis of your daily routine,” says Chanduwadia. Consistency and perseverance are important. So keep yourself motivated, eat right and hustle hard!