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Dietary Therapy

Those who wish to effectively manage their weight will need to engage in regular exercise as well as behavior modification and formulating a healthy diet. Certain patients might require certain medications to help with the weight loss process if the above methods prove to be ineffective by themselves. A doctor will thoroughly assess the various risk factors of each overweight patient before suggesting any specific courses of action to take. There are a number of different methods of losing weight, though dietary therapy is by far the most effective. The quality and quantity of the food that one puts in their body has a tremendous effect on weight and overall health.

Setting Goals
Those who wish to lose a significant amount of weight because they are obese must set specific goals that they need to meet. The primary goal for anyone who is overweight should be to stop gaining even more weight. Stabilizing one’s weight within five pounds or so is crucial during this process. The clinician who is working with the overweight person must work with the patient to come up with a weight loss goal that is realistic. A majority of overweight patients formulate a weight loss goal of thirty percent below where they currently are, which is not realistic in the slightest.

A truly effective and well thought out weight loss program can result in a loss of upwards of 5 percent of the patient’s starting weight. Weight loss of more than five pounds can begin to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, such as diabetes mellitus and hypertension. Losing five percent of one’s starting weight and managing to maintain it effectively is a tremendous accomplishment.

Types of Diets
There are many different types of diets, and some of them can be more beneficial than others for those who are significantly overweight and trying to shed excess pounds. Weight loss is largely about the number of calories a person consumes each day versus how much they burn. It is the goal of any diet to reduce the number of calories that the overweight person consumes so they can begin losing weight. Creating the right diet plan can be an extremely effective means of losing weight, even for those who are obese. The right diet plan has the potential to help even the most overweight person.

Some of the more common types of diets include low-fat diets, low-carbohydrate diets, and Mediterranean diet. It is important to keep in mind that while fad diets can be extremely popular with many people, they are generally not effective in the long term. These diets tend to produce results for those who follow them, but only for a short period of time. The fact is that many commercial weight loss programs are ineffective for those who want to lose a significant amount of weight and keep it off.

Balanced Low Calorie Diets
A lot of people who try to lose weight end up going on a balanced low calorie diet, which first requires the person to decide how many calories they will consume each day, and then choosing which foods to eat. These diets encourage people to pick foods that are packed with nutrients along with carbohydrates, fatty acids, and protein. All weight loss diets, including these, should not allow for alcoholic or sugary beverages.
Weight loss occurs when a person overeats, and a vast majority of the extra energy is stored as fat, while the rest acts as lean tissue. Approximately five percent of a person’s weight loss is going to be made up of protein. Any good low-calorie diet should limit protein loss as much as possible so that it does not fall under 5 percent.

Portion-controlled Diets
Another effective method when it comes to losing weight is to package foods individually so as to control the quantity of each portion you consume. By pre-packaging your foods you will reduce the temptation or even ability to overeat with meals. Nutrition bars as well as frozen foods and pre-packaged meals can all be stored at room temperature. These days many people have started to use this technique to lose weight because it is so incredibly effective. This is a great way to prevent consumption of excess calories each day because of just how well it tends to work for most people.

Low-fat Diets
Many overweight individuals also go on low-fat diets in an effort to shed excess pounds as quickly as possible. These diets typically demand at least a 30 percent reduction of fat intake on a daily basis. Numerous clinical studies have revealed that low-fat diets have a fairly high success rate at helping people lose weight if they actually adhere to them. It is incredibly important for those who follow this sort of diet to consume foods that contain healthy carbohydrates so as not to gain more weight.

There are numerous ways to go about implementing a low-fat diet, and it is important to know what they are. A dietitian will be able to give the overweight person a series of food plans that tell them exactly what to eat. The person also receives general guidelines in order to avoid fatty foods that will work against them during the weight loss process. One of these basic guidelines is that foods that melt in your mouth tend to be very fatty. A lot of physicians recommend that those who want to lose weight and stay healthy keep calories from fat at 30 percent of total calorie consumption.

Low-Carb Diets
Low-carbohydrate diets are another very popular weight loss option for those who are obese and want to start slimming down. While some people have actually argued that these diets are partially responsible for worsening the obesity epidemic, others say they can be incredibly useful to those who are overweight. This can depend on the types of carbohydrates that are consumed, as not all of them are the same.
The amount of weight that one loses in the short-term is definitely affected by the quantity of carbohydrates that are consumed. A low amount of carbohydrates in a weight loss diet would be anywhere from 60 to 130 grams, whereas a very low amount would be 0 to 60 grams. Those who restrict the amount of carbohydrates they consume on a daily basis too much can experience fluid loss as opposed to fat loss, which can be very unhealthy and counter-productive overall.

Low-carbohydrate diets tend to be more effective for short-term weight loss, so it is important to keep that in mind. These diets do offer certain benefits, such as a reduced risk of developing type 2 diabetes, certain cancers, and coronary heart disease. This sort of diet can be implemented by reducing the total amount of carbohydrate or by eating foods with a lower glycemic index. There are many different foods that are appropriate for a low-carbohydrate diet, such as fish, nuts, poultry, and many others.

High-Protein Diets
High-protein diets have also shown quite a bit of promise when it comes to helping people lose a significant amount of weight over time. These diets do have the potential to improve one’s ability to maintain a healthy weight, which is something that has been demonstrated by numerous clinical studies. One of the side-effects of a high-protein diet is increased urinary calcium excretion, which in turn can potentially lead to bone loss and calcium stone development over time.

Mediterranean Diet
While there are a number of variations of the Mediterranean diet, most of them are characterized by a high level of monounsaturated fat as compared to saturated. There is also the moderate amount of alcohol that is allowed (mostly wine), as well as high consumption of fruits, vegetables, grains, and other types of foods.

Dairy products like milk and yogurt are allowed, but only in moderation. This mostly applies to cheese products. This particular diet encourages those who follow it to keep their consumption of meat products fairly low. There are a number of health benefits that can come with following the Mediterranean diet, including decreased risk of developing type 2 diabetes as well as cardiovascular disease.

Very-low Calorie Diets
A very-low calorie diet is any diet that allows for only 200 to 800 calories each day. Some people refer to very-low calorie diets as “starvation diets” because of the extremely low number of calories that are allowed on a daily basis. While these diets were once considered to be very effective and were quite popular years ago, this is no longer the case. Numerous studies have ultimately determined that these so-called starvation diets are ultimately ineffective when it comes to long-term weight loss.

In fact, very-low calorie diets can be quite detrimental to one’s overall health. These diets can result in huge protein loss, but this is something that diminishes over time. Those who follow one of these diets might experience a dangerous drop in blood pressure, especially during the first seven days. A lot of diabetic people who go on very-low calorie diets tend to show huge improvements with regards to hyperglycemia. These diets should only be followed by those who need to lose weight quickly for a certain reason, such as a surgical procedure. Some of the common and possible side-effects of very-low calorie diets include hair loss, thinning of skin, and feeling cold.

Choosing the best Diet
Those who want to lose a significant amount of weight will need to take the time to select the right diet for them. Not all diets are right for everyone who is trying to lose weight. A professional nutritionist and/or dietitian can help with determining which foods to eat, which to avoid, and how much to consume on a daily basis. Dieting can be a difficult and somewhat complicated undertaking, which is why it’s always a good idea to have the help of professionals. Someone who chooses to diet without consulting one of these healthcare professionals runs the risk of following an ultimately ineffective diet, or even harming themselves in some way.

Weight loss diets definitely have the potential to help those who stick with them in the long term. Any diet that reduces one’s calorie intake below what they are burning off will start losing weight. It is also important to keep in mind that weight loss results may not be visible right away, but such is the nature of weight loss. Those who stick with an effective diet will eventually begin seeing the more obvious benefits of their hard work. The more time one puts into choosing a certain diet, the more success they are likely to have with it.

Side-effects
Those who follow a very-low calorie diet can expect to experience frequent adverse side-effects, especially when compared to regular low-fat diets. Some of these side-effects include constipation, headache, halitosis, muscle cramps, diarrhea, rash, weakness, and more. There are quite a few people who have raised concerns about very-low carbohydrate diets as well, stating that these diets are also potentially harmful with lots of side-effects. It is highly recommended that anyone who doesn’t absolutely need to lose weight in the short-term avoid these diets altogether.

Regaining Weight
Unfortunately, many people who lose weight from going on a certain diet end up gaining part of or even all of their weight back eventually. Losing weight can be difficult, but maintaining one’s new weight is even harder. This requires constant attention to what one eats on a daily basis for the rest of their lives as opposed to just a few weeks or months. While it’s true that many people who lose weight end up regaining it, this doesn’t have to be the case.

Those who make a point of paying close attention to the kinds of foods they are putting into their body (and how much of it) will be able to maintain a healthy weight in the long term. It is also important to keep in mind that some people lose weight faster than others, even when they are on the exact same diet.