It’s just ticked over to 2020, which means it’s safe to say that for a lot of the population, getting fit is the ultimate goal. We've already braced ourselves for the influx of new people in gyms, but really, sustaining a healthy lifestyle is so much more than just getting on a treadmill and lifting some weights.
While all is good with hitting the gym with a ‘new year, new me’ mentality - we’re all about emphasising breaking bad habits and replacing them with good ones in order to achieve a sustainable healthy lifestyle.
For us, diets don’t really fall into our vernacular (we’re more about that ‘conscious eating’ lifestyle) - we thought that for a few of you, it might at least be semi-interesting hearing about what some experts thought were the best and worst diets of 2019. So we did a bit of digging and this is what we think:
1. Mediterranean diet
This ‘diet’ is more of a lifestyle than a full-fledged diet. This is what makes it so great. Fads can come and go, but the Mediterranean diet’s encouragement of eating a variety of foods in moderation is a healthy approach to having an improved diet. It emphasises the consumption of foods high in omega-3s and healthy fats, like fish, olive oil, nuts, grains, legumes, fruits, and veggies - and less consumption of red meats.
Because there aren’t a specific set of rules to follow, this makes it a lot easier to adopt than ‘trendy’ eating plans that call for drastic overhauls of your lifestyle & what you’re used to. As it’s not drastic - it’s a lot more fool-proof, and it’s easier to stick to in the long run.
2. Volumetrics Diet
The great thing about the Volumetrics Diet is that the emphasis is on eating rather than deprivation. The focus is on 100% fullness from foods that will make you feel satisfied with less calories. This diet plan created by Barbara J. Rolls was a way to avoid high energy-dense (high-calorie) foods, and to learn to spot calorie traps (foods that appear healthy, but contain hidden calories).
It's in this diet that you'll be turned towards lower energy-density (low calorie) foods that contain more water, such as fruits and vegetables - than other options that have higher energy-density (high calories), such as sugary and fatty foods (potato chips, cookies, etc.)
By eating lower energy-density foods, you're able to lose weight by eating fewer calories, but still feel full.
This diet is about eating rather than dieting. You won't have to cut out all the sugars and fat from your diet, live off of lettuce or avoid any foods - instead, the diet will help you understand how you can enjoy certain foods (yes, this includes chocolate and cheese!) - but all without overeating.
Now, the worst diets?
1. Anything with detox or cleanse in the name.
The “cleanse” and “detox” mania fuels the fire of an already problematic diet culture.
They’re not FDA-regulated and therefore, what they do in your body can’t really be determined.
Outside the wide range of potential pitfalls, there are other concerns such as the long-term psychological effects that come with "detoxing". The more we see words like the two, the more than we believe there's something beneficial that can come of it. It's a shame trigger than is both unrealistic, and detrimental to people physiologically and mentally too.
2. The Carnivore Diet
The Carnivore Diet consists entirely of meat and animal products, excluding all other foods. Yes, you heard that right.
There are claims that this will aid in weight loss (although a week of Maccas can do the same things), mood issues, and blood sugar regulations amongst other health problems.
This diet is restrictive and likely to be unhealthy in the long term - especially given that there's no research to back its 'benefits'.
Unlike the Keto & Paleo diets which limit, but doesn't exclude, carb intake - the Carnivore Diet aims for zero carbs.
Carnivore Diet Enthusiasts are huge advocates for the cause, promoting the life-changing benefits of which their diet and lifestyle demands, which includes sole dependence on beef, water, and salt... But we can't say we're entirely convinced.This isn't just a 'low carb plan' this is a completely exclusionary plan. Not only would it be a nightmare to follow and maintain - there's no way that you could survive on a meat-only diet without suffering some serious health issues too. Hello, vitamin & mineral deficiencies, and potential organ damage!
So if you're looking for a healthier lifestyle in 2020 - you probably already know that it's more than just about hitting the gym. However, if you're looking to incorporate dieting into the mix - make sure you do your research to make sure that whatever you're doing is actually contributing to a healthier lifestyle for you.
With all that's chaotic at the moment, we've been inspired to do a little more good in the world. After a major university became a recent client of ours, we've had some very real conversations with them about how the nature of the current situation is impacting our international student community.
For those who’ve been filling their trollies with bags full of air (plus a handful of chips) or blocks of chocolate - you’re probably going to be feeling a little bogged down in a second. It’s so easy to skip past the nuts and fruits, because sometimes they do look quite expensive. However, you need to weigh up the value this has to your health. And more often than not, a handful of nuts will satiate your cravings for savoury food (as well as keep you fuller) than even a full bag of chips.