There are thousands of diet plans available, but which is the best one? In choosing a diet plan, you ultimately need to decide for yourself which one to try.
Here are 5 criteria to use when selecting the best plan. The plan you select should meet all of the following conditions:
1. An all-natural solution: Many pills and potions manufactured by leading drug companies are probably safe to use – but how do you really know for sure? Take fen-phen, for example: it was initially an FDA-approved drug, but later the FDA issued a report recommending people not take it after evidence from the Mayo Clinic surfaced suggesting that the drug might be a contributor to heart valve disease. The lesson here is that we really do not always know what drugs are doing to our bodies. An all-natural, drug-free diet plan is therefore the safest route.
2. Is recommended by other dieters: Choose something that thousands of others have tried and that has worked for them. However, do not confuse popularity with effectiveness. For example, despite the enormous popularity of the Atkins Diet in recent years, a 2007 “Consumer Reports” ranking of diet plans put the Atkins diet in last place among the plans they evaluated. Choose a plan that others say has worked for them rather than the ones with all of the ads and media hype.
3. Does not require a severe reduction in caloric intake: Sure, reducing your caloric intake to 800 calories per day will cause you lose weight over time, but doing so could also be extremely unhealthy for your body if done over prolonged periods. Research shows that the most effective diets are those that we can maintain as a lifestyle rather than as a special effort over a short time period. Choose a plan that allows you to eat a natural, healthy amount of food so that you can stick with it for the long term.
4. Does not require you to subscribe to a service: So many of the plans like Jenny Craig and Weight Watchers require an ongoing purchase of their specialized consulting services and products. While these programs can be very effective for weight loss, their subscription-based, ongoing purchase commitment-type business models are not right for all dieters. I suggest choosing a plan that allows you the freedom to buy and cook your own food or to eat out whenever you please.
5. Allows you to continue to eat wherever you want: Plans with too many food restrictions can severely limit where and how often you eat out. You should go with a plan that allows you to eat at restaurants and friends’ houses and that allow you to shop at your local grocery store. You should not have to drastically change your lifestyle in order to lose weight.
Choosing the best diet plan is an important task. Before choosing the latest fad, choose an effective plan that allows you to live your life on your own terms while still helping you burn away those extra pounds. Doing so will result in your subscribing to a diet plan that works for you not only this month but for your whole life.
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