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The Diet Changes to Try in 2018

Posted on 27 January 2018

by Haya AbdulHadi

Guest Writer

 

Winter has finally come! Its that time of the year to think about our summer bodies!  You know what they say ‘summer bodies are made in the winter”, so it’s time to get in shape and by that I mean getting fit, healthy and strong.

It’s time to dust off those workout clothes and commit to healthier food habits for the coming weeks. Let’s even try transitioning into making it a lifestyle. The decision is up to you; you define your goals and how you choose to go about achieving them.

Nowadays diets have become like fashion trends, a new one pops up every few months and people start swearing by it and you either keep up with them or fall behind on what’s ‘in’. Ever so often, there’s a new craze for what’s the healthiest foods and the quickest ways to achieve weight objectives, it’s getting too hard to keep up!

Looking for the trendiest diet fad to follow? Look no further! Here’s one that will definitely narrow down your Google searches and lessen your trips to the dietitian. 

 

  1. Teatoxes

Yes, you read that correctly. Teatoxes are some sort of detox teas that you supposedly drink and they make you lose weight and give you a flatter stomach. Who doesn’t want that right? People on social media seem to buy into the ‘drink me and be thin!’ teatox concept.

Except teatoxes actually do more damage than good. They create an impression of weight loss by making you lose excess water weight. Those teas contain Senna (a laxative) ingredient which when combined with extra caffeine is considered unsafe. Eventually, it’ll start to replace food for faster results and flat belly maintenance!

This is not only an unhealthy way of losing weight with severe health consequences, but it’s also not sustainable for long periods and is certainly not something you can turn into a lifestyle

Be sure to avoid any teatox this year. Your body will thank you for it!

 

  1. Ketogenic

Can you lose fat by eating more fat? Well, the answer is yes! If you’re looking to lose body fat, the ketogenic diet detoxifies your body from all the sugars in it, and adjusts it to start relying on fat for energy rather than carbs.

It relies on high intakes of fats, some protein and zero carbs. The idea is that after a few days of no carbs, your body goes into what’s called ketosis, where it starts using ketones (fat) for energy instead of carbs, thus causing your body to burn more fat every day.

In a time where most of our meals include some sort of carb, you need to be focused and prepare you meals ahead of time if you are serious about it.  This diet needs serious commitment. Are you up for the challenge?

  1. Paleo (Paleolithic)

The way this diet works, is similar to how cavemen and our ancestors used to eat, which required hunting and gathering. Anything more than that should be completely avoid; yes, I’m talking about processed foods and sugars!

Therefore, the Paleo is seen as a high protein and fat, and low carb diet. You would mostly eat real foods like meat and vegetables, some fruit, nuts and seeds, and absolutely no sugar.

It’s a healthy approach because it rids your body of chemicals and processed foods, thus improving your overall health.

Some people find that it excludes key foods that to them is nutritious (dairy for example), while others find that aspect particularly appealing to them.

My suggestion would be, try it out and see how you feel! But, if you’re one of those people who gets bored easily, or loves their labaneh and cheese in the morning, this is a diet to try for the short run.

  1. Mediterranean

We all live by this Mediterranean lifestyle; both food and family wise. Hence, we might even be living by this diet already without even realizing it!

It is the easiest ‘diet’ to follow. It includes fruits and vegetables (high intake), fish, whole grains (brown rice and wheat), beans, lean meats, olive oil and nuts.

Therefore, it is an all inclusive, well balanced diet plan, which in turn promotes optimal health. It also falls under the ‘heart healthy’ category!

Once you start, just keep going because it works long term! Maybe you’ll turn it into a lifelong eating pattern!

Don’t forget to add physical activity to this plan!

 

  1. Intermittent Fasting (5:2)

Are you looking for a plan that ‘kills two birds with one stone’? By this, I mean losing belly fat while maintaining muscle mass? Then give this plan a shot!

The 5:2 method asks you to choose any two consecutive days a week to fast, and then you eat normally for the other five days. However, in those two days you’re not completely fasting, but you have to limit your calorie intake to 500-600 calories at the most (= 2/3 meals a day).

Intermittent fasting does not require you to eat or not eat certain foods, just when to eat. You can pretty much eat anything you want, given that it’s not junk and processed foods, of course. Otherwise it’ll be ineffective. So on non-fasting days make sure to keep your food choices healthy, and stay physically active! Research suggests that this approach helps you improve your metabolism, lifespan and brain function. 

 

  1. DASH (known as Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension)

If your goal is to cut back on all that harmful salt in your system in order to create a healthier lifestyle for yourself, this one is a must to try! It also happens to be one of the best!

It is an eating pattern that includes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, low fat dairy, and some lean meats and fish; in other words, more real food and less processed foods.

That’s not only the best part; it’s flexible, accessible and can slowly transition into a lifelong eating pattern!

DASH is a safe and good plan for everyone to try! Getting healthy never looked so good. It’s almost too healthy to be true!

  1. The MIND diet: the “brain healthy” plan!

Do both DASH and Mediterranean appeal to you and your goals? This plan is perfect for you, and its application into daily life is long term.

This plan provides you with the best of both worlds! Think of it as the hybrid, which centers on the brain healthy aspect of each plan in order to operate properly.

The main focus here is on foods that are meant to boost brain health and function whilst decreasing the likelihood of Alzheimer’s. Thus, encouraging the intake of all kinds of vegetables, berries, nuts, olive oil, whole grains, fish, beans, poultry and a moderate amount of wine.

Sounds like a great, healthy plan, don’t you agree?

 

  1. The Zone

What I like about the zone diet is that you can play around with it according to what your goals are. If you want to lose weight, gain muscle, bulk up, etc. you can just alter the plan to suit that objective. Before starting, be aware of committing to weighing and measuring your food intake.

As a basis, the zone diet follows 40:30:30 rule; meaning your diet should consist of 40% carbs, 30% protein, and 30% fats. This way your insulin levels are under control, and your body is receiving all the nutrients it needs to take it into better shape, and fat and muscle percentages.

It’s one of the better diets to follow because it doesn’t restrict your body from any food group, and keeps you full by asking you to have at least 3 meals a day (and 2 snacks!).

If you don’t think this is time consuming or difficult to follow, try it! Seeing results will keep you motivated to keep going.

In the end, we’re all different and what works for me might not work for you. Take the time to test things out and see what your body thrives on the most!

Have you set your goals yet?

If so, combine that with your body type, and choose your diet plan wisely and start off 2018 with a healthy bang!

 

 

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