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How to Determine the Best Diet for You


Look at all of that delicious fuel! That's what food is, fuel for your body. If you are trying to lose weight, choosing the best fuel can be confusing. Especially when the latest diet promises to supercharge weight loss. CHI Health is here to tell you what you should know on Diets: Uncovered.

Negative Affects of Being Overweight

Hi, I'm Ellen Thomsen, a registered dietitian at CHI Health. If weight is a struggle, you have plenty of company. Nearly 40%, or 2 of 5 American adults are obese. Doctors probably have explained the health risks such as diabetes, high blood pressure, stroke, arthritis and more.

Being overweight also squeezes your wallet! The yearly medical cost for people who are obese are more than $1,400 higher. So who can blame you for going to extremes to drop some pounds?

Do Detoxes Work for Weight Loss?

Fasting and detox diets promise weight loss by drastically restricting calories. In the short-term, you lose water weight. But in the long-term, this approach actually slows your metabolism and you'll likely regain the weight when you return to a normal diet. Don’t be fooled by those detox promises. Your body already efficiently removes toxins - that's what your liver is for. A quality diet can support this process, no magic pills or potions necessary.

How Obsessive Diets May Backfire

Have you heard of clean eating? It doesn't mean scrubbing your dinner! It's all about eliminating processed foods, and instead choosing whole foods and plant-based proteins. The benefits include weight loss, improved energy, and even better dental health. It can be hard to maintain and some take it too seriously - being obsessive about clean eating even has a name: orthorexia.

Want a leg up on weight loss? There's a reason high-protein diets have become so hot. Protein increases the production of hormones which makes you feel full and boosts the number of calories you burn. That combo together can drop pounds. On the downside, you and your body might miss carbohydrates, and if you choose red meat or high-fat dairy you're not doing your heart any favors. Overwhelming? Yeah. The biggest challenge with having a balanced diet is staying on track.

The Top Dieting Goal is Balance

My advice is to forget those fads and fuel up with a balance of lean proteins, whole grains, and fresh fruits and vegetables and exercise daily. If you're struggling, see a registered dietitian for expert advice. Read more from our CHI Health nutrition bloggers as well.

Ellen Thomsen, MS, RD, LMNT, CDE, IFNCP™
Ellen Thomsen, MS, RD, LMNT, CDE, IFNCP™

Ellen Thomsen, MS, RD, LMNT, CDE is a Registered Dietitian, Certified Diabetes Care and Education Specialist and Integrative and Functional Nutrition Certified Practitioner. She is the diabetes education program coordinator at CHI Health and sees patients at the Millard Clinic. She works with patients to identify root causes to health conditions and make changes to improve overall health. Ellen’s passion is to help others develop lifestyle habits that allow them to feel their best.

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