Have you ever wondered if there is a common denominator to all diet success stories? It’s a well cited fact that over 90% of diets fail, while real life diet success stories are rare. Permanent weight loss is, in fact, the exception to the dieting rule. Of course, the problem lies with the popular trend of fad diets. These are short sighted, ill conceived eating plans where, after a period of misery and deprivation, the unfortunate dieter ends up putting back on even more weight than they originally lost.
So, what is the magic formula that makes some diets work? What is the secret behind diet success stories? Is there some way to tell in advance whether a diet has the makings of real, long term weight loss or if it’s just another demoralizing regime?
The good news is there are two simple checks that will reliably predict a diet’s outcome.
The first is how strict the diet is. In other words, are you still allowed to eat your favorite foods occasionally? Is anything ‘off-limits’?
This is critical because, no matter how motivated you may be to lose weight, the practice of depriving yourself of the foods you love most is doomed from the start. It sets up all the wrong messages in your mind. It’s only a matter of time before you decide it’s not worth it and give up.
The second important check is whether the diet regime requires that you devote a lot of your time to following its rules. For example, are you being asked to prepare laborious salads or make up protein shakes each day? Similarly, are you being instructed to devote a set period of time each day to some form of exercise? If the answer is ‘yes’, then steer clear.
Both diet ‘rules’ may seem innocent and even reasonable at first. But, can you really see yourself preparing a lunch of goji berry salad with Japanese carrot, mint and coriander dressing everyday? Do you truly have time for that 1 hour swim four times a week?
If you undertake an unreasonable set of demands, you end up burning out, and worse, feeling like a failure for it. In fact, it’s the diet that’s the failure and not you!
A successful diet will always allow flexibility and never make unreasonable lifestyle demands.
When you can find a diet that focuses on getting back to basics and that is built around natural instincts, then you will have a true diet success story.