Fad Diets Are Out, Low-Fat Diets and Exercise Are In

Turns out, the old diet tricks are the most successful for weight loss, say researchers


The fad diets of the 2000's — the baby food diet, the Master cleanse, the Paleo diet ring a bell? — are out, say researchers from Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. What do they say works best for a successful weight loss plan? Eating less fat and exercising more.

After looking at dietary patterns of nearly 2,600 subjects, the study authors found that the tried-and-true weight loss tips are what worked the most for people trying to lose weight. Said lead study author Christina Wee, it's good news that fad diets are on their way out.

"It's very encouraging to find that the most of the weight loss methods associated with success are accessible and inexpensive," Wee said in a press release. "There are lots of fad diets out there as well as expensive over-the-counter medications that have not necessarily been proven to be effective." Plus, diet foods like fat-free and sugar-free items weren't proven to be successful; researchers say it could be because dieters think they can eat more of diet foods because they're "healthier."

And the structure of a weight loss program may help those looking to lose weight. Those who participated in a weight loss program lost more weight than those who didn't; those who lost 10 percent or more of their body weight were most likely enrolled in a program. Additionally, very few study participants who used diet pills successfully lost weight. It's a clear correlation between weight loss and exercise and diet.

The newest research is a sign of hope for those looking to lose weight to improve their health; Wee says that it's best to lose 10 percent of body weight to see significant health improvements in the obese, but losing as little as 5 percent can still make a big difference.


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10 Comments

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Cherish's picture

First, self-reporting doesn't actually prove anything; it can indicate an avenue for further study but to say that low-fat & exercise is THE way seems a bit uninformed on your part.

Second, in order to broaden your horizons maybe you should do some serious studies on those who enjoy a paleo lifestyle and have lost a lot of weight...like say 60 pounds in less than a year, without changing the amount of exercise being done...go to Mark's Daily Apple & check out the success stories being shared there.

TerraGuy's picture

Eating low fat is the worst choice of diet you could make.. Even Walter Willet, professor at the Harvard University of the food & epedemic department, has found it to be very counter effective for people's health. Humans *need* fat, our brains are dependend of fat, everything you eat will be either used or stored as fat for later use. All kinds of vitamins need fat if to be succesful used by the body (vitamine A, D, K). We've *always* eaten fat in our foods, only in the last couple of decades the 'experts' say it was bad for us. Why would nature have cheated us for millions of years? It doesn't make sense..

Personally I went from a vegetarian diet to a high fat diet: olive oil, coconut oil, avocado's, nuts, red meat, fatty fish, eggs, all very fatty stuff. And I lost almost 10 pounds. And I have never felt better: the illnesses I had every 3 months are gone, I'm getting noticable stronger in just a few months, I can handle stress better, all kinds of weird internal problems are gone, I'm more clear in my thinking, I can eat all I want and not get any heavier, I just feel great! It is amazing how much a change of diet can give you! And I"m certanly not the only one who is experiencing the health and weight benefits.

The science is also against low-fat: http://ukpmc.ac.uk/abstract/MED/11673773/reload=0;jsessionid=UUSYaxn6zdZ...
Or this one: http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMoa0708681

...and there are lots and lots more of those studies, that they are more effective or as effective but with better health results.

So I have to agree with Terry here, Paleo is in and kicking. And non-commercial, unlike most other diets. And maybe non-sexy and non-trendy, but that is not the point, getting healthy is and has been just a matter of getting the right, natural kinds of food. Scientists musn't think they can improve the foods of nature; they can only use science to find out nature has been right all along and advise accordingly.

Look for 'Fat head' if you want to see a funny but serious documentary about fats in our food, which will explain the benefits of eating enough fats.

Stevup001's picture

When I originally commented I clicked the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now each time a remark is added I get four emails with the identical comment. Is there any manner you possibly can remove me from that service? Thanks!
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Sorry to bother you with something annoying like the truth, but I've been on Paleo now for two years and I see our numbers growing just fine, thanks to the fact that it works.

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