What diet is for you?

Good question. It will probably depend on goals, individual preference in food, budget, and convenience. The purpose of this entry to go over several of the most popular diets and give you an honest opinion of them. I’m sure this will offend people. Have a sense of humor and take it with a grain of salt please.

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Vegetarian/Veganism

I’ve personally never tried either because I enjoy eating animals and their children, but I know a lot of people who have. This diet can be can very healthy if done correctly. If it isn’t done correctly, the dieter can end up with deficiencies in certain vitamins and minerals that could potentially lead to long-term health issues. One common issue would be people practicing veganism abstaining from dairy. This could create a deficiency in calcium, if the dieter doesn’t curb their diet or take supplements to correct it.

The thing that I find kind of ironic about these diets is that there are many vegetarian and vegan friendly packaged foods that try to mimic meat based foods(ie: burgers, chicken nuggets, hotdogs). They’re all made of soy of course, but its the principal of it. The dangers of eating too much soy is a whole separate story, but its been shown to contain an estrogen like hormone (plythoestrogen). Too much estrogen isn’t good for men or women.

If you truly love animals and want to eat vegan thats great, but at least do it the right way. There’s nothing more ridiculous than seeing someone who says they’re vegan wearing a leather jacket and eating a box of Oreos.

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Mediterranean 

The mediterranean diet attempts to mimic the diet of the people living in the mediterranean region of Europe. It involves eating mostly fresh food, replacing butter with olive oil, and using fish or chicken as your main protein source. The main problem with this is the emphasis on eating fish. The fish in the mediterranean are much more healthy than the fish commonly found the US because they aren’t as high in mercury. The rest of the diet makes perfect sense.

This is also the official diet of the people who intermittently try get in shape, the “new years resolutions”, and those people who are constantly saying things like “I really need to get back to the gym soon”. Honestly, it’s not really a diet at all. It’s a system of creating a healthy lifestyle, but acts as the frame work for someone who needs that structure in their life. On the mediterranean diet food pyramid, the two core values are regular physical exercise and normal/non-processed foods.

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IIFYM or Flexible dieting

If it fits your macros or IIFYM is less of a diet and more of way of counting calories and macro-nutrients that you should be eating. The calories and macros you should be eating are based on your age, weight, activity level, and goals (weight loss, weight gain, maintain weight). There are several online calculators you can use to come up with these figures.

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This system definitely works, but its kind of taboo and it isn’t for everyone. Whats taboo about it?…you don’t have to, but the system kind of invites people to eat whatever they want as long as at the end of the day you’re getting to the correct amount of macros. If you eat like this then chances are none of your meals will be in any kind of proportion and unused calories could go straight to your ass. This is of course all based on your activity level throughout the day.

The system works the best if you’re capable of planning ahead and properly dispersing your calories throughout the day and your macros at the right times. For insistence, you would want to eat the majority of your carbs at the beginning of the day and a good helping of protein after you exercise.

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Gluten-free/Paleo

Paleo is to Gluten-Free as Vegan is to Vegetarian. Paleo is in short abstaining from all grain, gluten, dairy, processed food, legumes, and a lot of unhealthy oils. It’s a very healthy way to go if you perform it correctly, but it can be very expensive if you do it to the full-extent. Grass fed beef and free range chickens are delicious but definitely not inexpensive. I did this diet for a year and half and loved every minute of. I barely had any fat on me when I started it and within three months, I lost 25lbs and was much more athletic. The diet works great in that aspect, the problem lies in being able to take in enough calories and the availablity.

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The majority of the calories you take in on this diet are from healthy fats. The main foods that contain healthy fats are nuts, avocados, eggs, and the oils you use to cook (coconut and olive). You can only eat so much of that stuff in one day and if you are physically active, you will need to eat a lot to maintain your weight and not go crazy because you’re always hungry. There’s also almost no restaurants that have a paleo menu yet, so eating out doesn’t really work.

What’s best?

Simply eating clean, healthy, and in normal portions. It does help to calculate your macros and weigh out your meals, but it all boils down to your goals and how much you care about health and fitness.

FF

 

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