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Reasons Diets Fail

Updated on July 12, 2010

We have all seen it in ourselves, or with someone else who tries to diet, that diets often end in failure. But what are the reasons diets tend to fail so often? An estimated nine out of ten dieters that begin a weight loss program will never reach their goal weight. In this article, I will discuss the reasons why diets fail and how to avoid these common pitfalls in your own diet.

You must have forgiveness when dieting. A cheat meal is not the end of the world when dieting. A cheat meal is considered a meal or food eaten that is not on the diet plan. Often when a person cheats on their diet, a snowball effect of cheat meals follow, which completely destroys the diet. Before beginning a diet, tell yourself it is okay to have a cheat meal. You can even schedule these cheat meals into your diet. This can also be used as a way to reward yourself for keeping on the diet. For instance, every Sunday have a cheat meal for dinner or lunch.

Another reason for diet failure is when people do not see results fast enough. We live in a world of immediate results and when we do not get what we want quickly, it is often easiest to give up. To combat this, have a realistic goal - do not try to lose twenty pounds in a month. Instead, opt for a more attainable goal like losing four pounds in a month. The truth is, a slow and steady weight loss is less likely to be put back on than if weight loss occurred quickly.

Diet failure can also be caused by a lack of motivation. Motivation to diet can be for many reasons, from wanting to fit into a dress, to losing weight for health reasons. To stay motivated on a diet, consider having short term goals. For example, a good short term goal is to not add dressing to salads for a week. By the end of the week you will no longer want the fattening dressing, since you know that you can live without it.

A fourth reason why many diets fail is extreme dieting. A diet, by definition, is anything that a person eats during their lifetime. Extreme diets that are composed of only drinking shakes or abnormal calorie restriction are not sustainable. You must consider your diet as a change in lifestyle and as way to better yourself and body. A diet plan that is composed of healthy foods that also taste good should be the goal when beginning a diet. This way the body is nourished and also the food eaten is enjoyed, which can be the difference between a successful diet and just another diet failure.


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