Tag Archives: fad diets

Why Self Made Diet Plans Fail at Weight Loss?

When you try to lose weight, the first thing you do, is watch your diet by eating low fat and fat free foods.

Maybe try some of the fad diets like the GM diet (Indian Version), Atkins Diet, Raw Banana Diet or the Lemon Detox Diet, or just a plain crash diet. In the first couple of weeks, you see some weight loss, but in just 2 months, you gain the weight back.

Firstly, all fad diets are extremely unhealthy. Then, everyone’s body has a different chemistry. Due to this, a generic diet plan besides having possible side effects will not result in effective weight loss. Also, many diet plans are not made for Indian diets or vegetarian diets, so many of the diet components either are not allowed in your diet, or are not available in India.

When you decide to try a diet by yourself, you are literally making yourself a guinea pig, since you don’t know if it will work for you. Creating a diet plan is very time consuming. To implement it, is even harder. With the lack of understanding of diets, your body chemistry and lack of experience in creating effective diets, before you start, you’ve already shot your chances of losing weight on the diet.Often self made diet plans are very unrealistic, so they are great to make, hard to implement and even harder to follow.

Besides, many self made diet plans have unbalanced nutrition and thus unhealthy.

— this article is written by a dietitian @ FitHo
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Blood Type Diet Explained

The most popular weight loss formula followed by leading dietitians, especially in India, is the blood type diet. This blood type diet is based on Peter D’Adamo, a naturopathic physician, and the writer of  Eat Right 4 Your Type, findings that ABO blood type is the most important factor in determining a healthy diet, and he recommends distinct diets for each blood type.

According to the founder there are three main diets for the 3 blood types: A, B & O. Recently Blood group AB has also been added to this list. Dietary requirements are divided and allotted under the four blood groups available. Each of the blood groups have been categorized as per our progeny or our ancestral lifestyle. Lets take each blood group briefly and understand the unique dietary intake for each individual group:

Blood group O diet: The diet recommended to this blood group is to eat a higher protein diet and restricting the consumption of grains, breads, legumes, and beans. As this was the oldest known blood group the origins are connected to our ancestors that were hunters.

Blood group A diet: The diet recommends more vegetarian food intake that contains high amount of vegetables and foods to be avoided are meat, diary & wheat. As the diet relies more on agricultural products the origins of this group are traced to our ancestors that were cultivators.

Blood group B diet : These individuals are associated with a strong immune system and a flexible digestive system. The diet asserts that people of blood type B are the only ones who can thrive on dairy products. Foods to be avoided are lentils and wheat.

Blood group AB diet: The blood type diet treats this group as an intermediate between blood types A and B, meaning it is primarily vegetarian but has reasonable amount of protein, grains and dairy as part of daily dietary intake.

The basic login given by the author for adopting this dietary pattern is that different blood groups digest lectins, food proteins, differently. If you eat foods containing lectins incompatible with your blood type, he says, you may experience inflammation, bloating, a slower metabolism, even diseases such as cancer. According to the author of this diet the best way to avoid these effects is to eat foods meant for your blood type.

This is another classic fad diet that is commonly promoted as the “most scientific” diet is as unbalanced as any other fad diet that focus on specific food groups at one time instead of working with a combination of all. Eliminating one or more food groups from the diet makes it unbalanced and nutritionally deficient. For instance, for blood type ‘A’ milk and dairy products and for blood type ‘B’ grains are not so healthy, but all we know that milk and dairy products are rich in calcium and it’s also important for healthy bones and fibers in grain protect your heart and keeps the bowel strong. In long term, this can result in a poor intake of nutrients needed for good health. Cutting out dairy products  can put you at risk of osteoporosis (brittle bone disease), or having no fruits & vegetables the main sources of vitamins, minerals & iron can put you at risk of many deficiencies like anemia & vitamin B12.

Another important point that is often overlooked while stating this theory is that till date there have been no clinical trials validating the scientific origins of this theory. Are people prescribing these diets using this so called scientific premise to eventually sell a low calorie diet plan to individuals seeking a healthier lifestyle? Following this kind of fad diet even for a short period of time can cause serious damage in the long run.

So before you get on any diet ensure it doesn’t focus on a particular food group alone. Unless you are medically tested to be allergic to a certain food group there is no reason why you should not not be eating them.  Your diet should be a mix of all nutrition given to you on a daily basis. The reason why we need to eat a balanced diet everyday is because our body cant store nutrition and therefore needs to be replenished daily. It is important to eat well but it is equally important to also exercise which not only helps in burning extra calories but also naturally cleansing our body of the toxins.

— this article is written by a dietitian @ FitHo

Best Exercises for Abdominal Fat or Love Handles

After belly, thighs and arms and butt the other common weight gain area is your waist. Over a period of time, weight starts to collect on the side of your stomach which is also known as “love handles” or “tyres”. All these terms are nothing but common slang for abdominal obesity.

Eating unhealthy food and no exercise is the most common cause of love handles. These tyres were mostly seen on women in the past but now more and more men seem to develop it in their late twenties & early thirties. Indians are genetically inclined to accumulate fat around their waist which is also linked to Type 2 diabetes and heart health.

The simplest way to check for abdominal fat is to measure your waist. Run a tape measure around your waist at about the level of your navel. Breathe minimally, and make sure not to pull the tape measure so tight that it depresses the skin. The average BMI  (Body mass Index) of an Indian woman ranges from 18-24.9 , a waist circumference greater than 34-35 inches is considered high risk to lifestyle diseases.

Another way to measure abdominal fat is by calculating the waist to hip ratio. This is done through simple calculation of taking the ratio of the waist and hip. The healthy range in women is less than .7 and men is less than 1.

The best way to lose weight is through exercise and watch what you eat. Ensure that your body is getting adequate nutrition to improve the metabolism. Do not resort to fad diets as they might show weight loss in the short term but in the long term you put the weight back on besides depriving your body of important nutrition resulting in multiple deficiencies in future. For healthy weight loss, consult a good professional weight loss expert to help you lose weight and get fit.

Here are a list of exercises that are very effective to lose abdominal fat or love handles:

Running: Love handles are fat accumulated on your sides. So it is more about burning the fat in the body. You can lose maximum fat by running or doing any cardio exercise. Running allows you to burn maximum fat in a workout other than boosting metabolism. So do start running in variations and push yourself more for quicker results. Include sprinting, bounding,
German drills, etc in your plan. Burning maximum calories starts burning fat gradually from the body. Manage your diet and eat adequately according to your daily requirement to allow fat to burn faster.

Crunches: Love Handles are part of your core and require core to be worked to exercise the area and build some muscles underneath. Crunches are highly beneficical is strengthening your core for better balance in the body and provides strength for intense workouts. Do crunches on medicine ball and see the muscle gain.

Side Crunch: Working the obliques help in reducing the love handles on the side and side crunch is very effective for oblique muscles. Lie down on right side of your body with right arm over your chest. Crunch your left armpit towards the left hip and raise your legs while crunching. Repeat and do both sides.

Elbow to Knee Crunch: You could do elbow to knee crunch either standing or while lying down. Lie down on the floor with knees bent and arms over your chest. You have to touch your right elbow with the left knee and alternatively. While doing the exercise, move your torso for the exercise. This works the rectus abdominis and obliques while the standing one works the entire mid section and hip flexors.

Side Bends: Stand straight with dumbbells in your hands by your side. Alternatively bend your side and stretch the other side, holding for a few seconds and then do the other side. This execise stretches the love handles and improves blood flow in the area.

Burpees: It is a aerobic exercise which is a combination of a few exercises mixed together for greater fitness. To perform the exercise, stand straight in the first step. Then get down to squat position. Third put your hands on the floor and throw both your legs back stretching your back and looking up in the air. In the fourth step bring back your legs to the squat position and lastly jump up to starting position. Repeat. This exercise not only stretches the core and works the entire body but the faster version of it burns many calories too.

Russian Twist: Sit on the floor with your knees bent and hold your arms straight in front of you and lean your back a little while your torso is at 45-degree. Brace your core and rotate to the side and as far as you want. Repeat for both sides and mind the posture. This exercise also helps build the muscles on the side and works the core. To make this exercise more intense hold a weight between your hands or lift your feet in the air and perform the exercise.

Wood chop: It is again one of the finest twist exercise which can be done with an object, cable, dumbbell, bat, base ball bat etc. As you pull the weight across your body, you rotate your hips and bend forward slightly so the weight ends up slightly below your hip. Keep your torso, chest and head in line with your hips. Do it for both sides.

— this article is written by a dietitian @ FitHo

Does Smoking help in weight Loss

Can smoking lead to weight loss?  We know smoking is injurious to health and can cause cancer and lung, mouth, respiratory diseases over a period of time. It is highly addictive because of the nicotine content present in it and can easily let free radicals enter the body. Free radicals are substances that contain unpaired electrons which act with various substances in the body to form new cells. These cell formations can be result in  cancerous causing cells which can intensify into life taking disease. These days many people are experimenting various things like fad diets, smoking, weight loss pills, fat burners for weight loss but are they the healthiest way to lose weight. Infact it is one of the most common reason, which is to lose weight,why people start smoking.

Smoking (Cr/freedigital)

According to studies nicotine content in cigerettes can boost metabolism and provides a burst of energy. Smoking makes us inhale carbon monoxide which deprives the red blood cells of oxygen and leads to lesser absorption of nutrients for healthy growth. This makes the body work more than usual for the suppy of oxygen and leaving you feel tired. The tar sticks to the airways which makes it difficult for you while breathing when you smoke. But does this marginal kick to metabolism really helps to lose weight and especially at the cost of your health?

Smoking can distract you from feeling hungry. Smokers know this when they are hungry and crave for food and smoke at that time they can put off the hunger for a while. A healthier substitute to control hunger pangs is to replace this nicotine stick with a cup of green tea. There are other healthy ways to boost your metabolism other than choosing cigarettes which contains nicotine. Through exercise and eating regular meals would boost your metabolism. Drink lots of cold water for faster metabolism and weight loss. Smoking has a lot of adverse effects in the long run that includes dehydration which makes you lose water and slows down the metabolism resulting in slower calorie burn.

Besides all that is written about smoking do you know of anyone who has actually lost weight with smoking? Either you know smokers who are fat and smokers who are thin. But we doubt there has been any weight loss success story that have resulted from smoking cigarettes.

Here are some tips to try to quit smoking:

Control your mind: Smoking can be very addictive and can be difficult to quit. Set yourself targets. Set your self a date to quit smoking and make sure you stop it on that day. In the mean while make small targets like not smoking till afternoon etc to lessen the density of nicotine in the body.

Drink Water: Whenever you feel like smoking drink a glass of water and this could help you to postpone the urge to smoke a cigarette for a while. Doing this ways could bring in the gap between smoking cigerettes.

Chewing Gum: Try diverting the mind everytime you feel like smoking. Eat a chewing gum or pop in a mint to calm down the urge for a cigerette. Eat a toffee it could help reduce the craving with its sweet taste.

Exercise: When you have quit smoking start exercising or go out for a run. As the craving for smoking can make you feel irritated and hyper at times. Running and exercising can help you throw away the frustation and will calm you down.

— this article is written by a dietitian @ FitHo

Indian Diet for Weight Loss

Indian cuisine is rich, diverse and balanced. From the spices that are used to cook it to the different vegetables available through the year not only makes the diet packed with essential nutrition but also provides huge variety.

Unlike American or European where large part of their meals consist of pre-packaged cereals or breads an average Indian household is brimming with wide variety of delicious food options like cheela, dalia, poha, upma, stuffed roti and many more options.

As you enjoy the wide variety of Indian food available here are some quick options that can be easily made, are very healthy and can help you lose weight.

Some healthy Indian Diet Options for weight Loss

Khicdi: Dal(Split Pulses) and rice cooked together and generally  eaten with a combination of curd. This indian diet is simple with least spices except salt, turmeric and some herbs for aroma. It contains protein from dal, carbohydrates from rice and is easy to digest and light for the stomach.

Besan ka cheela made of gram flour is usually eaten in combination with curd is a instant, nutritious, low calorie, protein rich recipe ideal for breakfast and snack time . Cheela can be a part of weight loss diet since it is low in calories and also a part of muscle building diet since it is high in protein. Make sure its made in minimal oil and cooked on a non-stick. (more…)

— this article is written by a dietitian @ FitHo