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Popular fat loss diet comparisons

Updated on July 9, 2015
pldominice profile image

I am working on my certification in Personal Training. I also have a passion for nutrition and animals.

Is healthy really fast fat loss?

The word diet has been thrown around so much in modern culture that most people don’t really even know what it means anymore. In fact, for someone who has finally decided to “not diet anymore”, eating and exercising correctly, when talk about a change in diet, they exasperatedly announce that they no longer want to “diet”! I’m going to talk about three popular fat loss programs on the market now to see how they add up to the advised 1-2-3 nutrition rule.

The Paleo Diet

Lets start with the Paleo Diet. The Paleo diet says eating the way our ancestors ate thousands of years ago is the way our bodies are still programmed. Grains were not introduced until the “agricultural revolution”. So lean meats, eggs, nuts, fruits, and non legume vegetables are allowed; grains, legumes, and dairy are not.

For the most part this diet is not a bad choice, especially if you’re trying to eat better…maybe you need rules to help you follow it. The real problem with this diet though is that it really cuts out carbohydrates. This is the primary fuel for your body. The only other way for the body to make glucose(short of supplementing straight glucose) is to take in more fats, again not good for sustainable energy. This is definitely not a good diet for someone with a balanced workout program, whether for weight loss or for intense training. Fruits and fats cannot keep up with the demand. So while you’ll be taking in lots of good protein and healthy fats, the body still be lacking many other things; and it definitely won’t be able to focus on weight loss or muscle building. You would really have to be diligent about balancing your macros given your activity level. That may be too much for many people changing to a healthy lifestyle.

The Vegetarian Diet

For the next comparison, I’d like to evaluate the vegetarian diet. I chose this one because while its not a fad weight loss diet per se, people associate vegetarianism with eating less thinking it will do the same thing as any other fad diet. While there are many variations to this diet such as pescatarian and lacto-ovo vegetarian, the principle is the same; no food that comes from animals. This is not inheritantly a bad diet…many fitness professionals, bodybuilders make great careers for themselves being completely vegetarian. There are so many new protein replacements on the market today that it makes it easier than ever to get your required amount of protein for your activity level. Many vegetarians get plenty of carbohydrates and fats that are required for their fitness level as well. When going vegetarian, especially as a woman, you need to make sure you getting all of your minerals vitamins, such as Iron, calcium, and B12.

Do you know your nutrition fuel?

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The Ketogenic Diet

Lastly, I would like to look at the ketogenic diet. I had heard of this before but didn’t understand rules until I did the research, as I always understood that ketosis wasn’t something you really wanted to get near. This is another low carb high protein diet that uses the body’s defense mechanism against starvation, ketosis. When the body runs out of glucose supply it turns to fat stores to supply the brain with glucose. Some research I read to make sure you drink plenty of water to help prevent a decrease in blood pressure, add potassium salt to balance out the high sodium foods being taken in, which would also help with fatigue and light-headedness; and lastly to absolutely avoid an exercise routine when you’re not doing the two day period where you carb load. I don’t even know where to start with all the red flags being out here. It’s definitely a fast way to lost weight but definitely not lasting as staying in this state is detrimental to your overall health. If you have to list side effects in a nutrition diet I would err on the side of caution and just avoid it altogether.

When compared to each other....

When compared together it really depends on your activity level or your anticipated activity level. Ketogenic diet is fine for quick fat loss, but not for a long term solution and has no real health benefits to speak of. No matter what nutritional plan you plan on following you need to do your due diligence and really figure out what is going to be easier for you to follow long term.

*Obviously these are my opinions as a student of the fitness profession. And there are a lot of them otherwise there wouldn't be so many diets out there. Talk to your doctor and figure what is going to work for you long term. If there is one fact in all of this it is that real fat loss comes from long term solutions.


D Trish Fit

Cited research

Research from:

Various question and answer boards, such as Yahoo


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