Home Opinions Here’s why New Year fad diets are unhealthy, counterproductive

Here’s why New Year fad diets are unhealthy, counterproductive

Fad Diets
Illustration by: Israel Gonzalez | Staff Illustrator

The New Year has come and with it a list of New Year’s resolutions—including fad diets. Unfortunately, the only way to make a lasting difference on one’s health is to make a lifestyle change, not by buying into these useless products.

Diets fail. Not people. The truth is that diets are not meant to be sustained. Sure, you could survive off of just beet juice for three weeks and lose weight. The problem is when the diet ends and people return to unhealthy habits. The pounds which were shed immediately return.

One of the worst fad diets out there is the lie about gluten-free miraculously making one lose weight. If you do not have celiac disease, the disease that prevents the body from being able to produce gluten, or medically diagnosed gluten sensitivity, then steer clear of gluten-free products. Going gluten-free can cause malnutrition and vitamin deficiencies if done incorrectly.

Poor nutritional education is not the fault of the hardworking student just following the latest instructions from their health magazines and blogs. It is the fault of those pushing the useless fads. The commercials appear enticing, with models and celebrities gushing about the new “it” pill and fad diet that helped them all throughout their career.

Oprah Winfrey purchased a portion of Weight Watchers, increasing its profit margin and adding to her own pocket. Oprah’s yo-yoing weight is a well-known topic of many gossip magazines and talk shows. However, when she loses weight on Weight Watchers it encourages many to follow suit—even though she tends to gain a lot of it back.

It is undeniable that the program worked for Oprah. After all, she did lose the weight, but the commercials and ads forget to mention the fact that the weight returned at the end of her subscription. The only way to maintain that lower weight would be to continue to pay into the company forever.

These weight loss industries make people dependent on their products. Pills promise a new body with no effort and health magazines push fad diets to sell their sponsored juicers and blenders. None of those things are necessary to lose weight or maintain a healthy lifestyle.

The only thing necessary to become healthy is a will to change habits from bad to good and a proper understanding of nutrition. Make a change for good—not just for a week.

Weight loss does not happen overnight and there is no easy health fix. Bad habits are easy to create and hard to break, so patience with oneself is necessary.

Substituting water for a soda will have amazing results, not only on weight but on skin and general health overall. Be conscious of what you eat and how much. Counting calories is not always a must if what you are eating is beneficial to your body. Get up and exercise, even if it’s just for 15 minutes a day. Any beneficial change is better than remaining stagnant.

Being conscientious and proactive about one’s health is the only way to maintain a healthy weight and lifestyle. Be active, eat well and stay patient with yourself and you will see a lasting change.