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Comparison of Top 10 Diets

Pick up any women’s magazine these days and chances are you will be bombarded by the latest diet craze to hit Hollywood. As gaunt celebrities flaunt their emancipated bodies, all thanks to some newfangled diet, it’s hard to separate what is a good diet from what is a dodgy one.

If you are confused by what you are seeing and reading when it comes to weight loss, don’t worry, you’re not alone. Right now the top 10 diets represent a mixed bag of the good and the questionable.

Some diets work on lowering your calorie intake overall, while others work by promoting a higher protein and low carb way of eating so your body burns fat for fuel. The theory here is that protein keeps you full and if there are no carbs in the body then you’ll tap into your fat storage more easily.

Then there are meal replacements which offer convenience for the time poor but with the disadvantage of getting boring and not teaching valuable cooking skills along the way. The fact that meal replacements don’t promote real, fresh food is also a bit of a worry.

Prepared and pre-packaged meals are also a handy option for busy individuals but these are often based on higher carb portions which can slow down weight loss. Also, like meal replacements, prepared meals do not teach portion control, cooking skills or nutrition.

Counting calories or the “point system” is a good way understand nutrition and how foods impact on your body but weight loss can be slow as you are not encouraged to watch your macronutrient balance which is vital for speedy results.

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Here’s our take on what’s out there to help you make a more informed choice about your intended weight loss program
  • The Atkins Diet.  This has been one of the most well known diets for decades although it’s controversial.  It is known as a ketogenic diet which refers to the use of macronutrients (protein, carbs and fats) ratios.  While this component is fine, the high intake of saturated fat in this diet is generally viewed as unhealthy by nutritional experts.
     
  • The Dukkan Diet has taken France and the rest of the Western world by storm.  A relatively new entrant amongst the top 10 diets, Dukkan is a high protein “hunter-gatherer” diet that includes unlimited vegetables.  Probably a healthier option than Atkins.
     
  • The Blood Type Diet is a new one in the top 10 but does not appear to have the stamp of approval from mainstream health professionals.  It is based on restricting certain types of food groups depending on your blood type although this has the disadvantage of causing nutritional deficiencies.
     
  • Bodytrim is one of the most popular weight loss programs in Australia and is classed as a high protein/low carb diet however it’s primarily about the size and timings of meals and their macronutrient base to ensure efficient weight loss.
     
  • Weight Watchers is a household name in Australia and there is a lot to be said for its healthy basis.  Weight Watchers is based on calorie controlled meals however weight loss can sometimes be frustratingly slow.
     
  • Tony Ferguson, Jenny Craig and Lite and Easy are all calorie controlled, prepared meal diets designed for busy people.  Good for convenience but not ideal for long term success.
  • Sureslim is a medically supervised, tailored eating plan that looks to be well considered but is relatively expensive to do putting it out of reach for many people.
     
  • Last but not least is South Beach which focuses on the glycemic index.  Designed by an American cardiologist, it’s heart healthy in that it doesn’t permit trans fat, discourages saturated fat and instead encourages foods rich in unsaturated fats, omega-3 fatty acids, and carbs with a low glycemic index.
 

While all these choices may seem a bit overwhelming at first, if you do your homework and choose a diet plan that suits your lifestyle, you should succeed with flying colours!
 

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