Why Fad Diets Are Harmful and Don’t Work but Lifestyle Changes Do!

I see life and our overall wellbeing as a complex jigsaw puzzle and ‘stressed pieces’ don’t fit together. The key to ‘life’s puzzle’ is to find and fix our Emotional, Physical and Environmental stresses so our pieces can connect again. That’s why I say life is a journey filled with happiness when all our jigsaw pieces work together – The ‘Big 3’ Stress Solutions Puzzle...

Hi and welcome back I’m Character 32 and I am here to help you!

I know a lot of people who get into ‘diet mode’ trying to lose those extra kilos they’ve gained over the Christmas/New Year period. If you are looking to lose 2 or 3 kg then that’s a different a story.

However, if you are looking at losing 10kg+ be careful. Fad dieting can in fact make things worse instead of making things better if you don’t do it the correct way.


Those who know me might ask ‘You’ve never had a weight problem so how would you know about fad diets?’… It’s because I’ve never had a weight problem that’s how I know! Want to know my secret? I’ll tell you… I listen to my body!


Here are the top 10 reasons why ‘Fad Dieting’ doesn’t work and can detrimental to your health


1. Metabolism/Thyroid problems

Your thyroid might be under stress and yo-yo Fad Dieting could be causing you more damage. The thyroid needs to be supported and nurtured or your hormones run amuck. All of which can bring on autoimmune issues if you’re not careful. 


2. Calorie restricting can age you

Trust me I see enough expat/wealthy wives calorie restrict constantly and it’s written all over their faces. There’s the argument to be made and some say it’s good for you, however long term it most certainly makes you look older!


3. Food allergies come into play

I’ll do a blog specifically why the ‘Fad Blood Diet’ doesn’t work for example. I was getting food allergy testing done with 200 different foods. I then compared it to the ‘Blood Diet’ out of curiosity (for a blog post). Sometimes when we think we're eating ‘healthy’ we aren’t and certain ‘Fad Diets’ can cause depression and anxiety just to name to a few.  Like I said I’ll blog about this later!


4. You can destroy beneficial gut bacteria

When you’re not eating the correct foods like probiotics the gut (and your gut health) will surely suffer. Why does this matter? Because the gut absorbs nutrition and works in conjunction with the brain (blog coming soon on that one too…it’s a good one!).


5. Lose weight now gain double later

Yes, initially you may shed the weight but due to potential damage to your thyroid and hormones, you may end up eating like a rabbit and still putting on weight. 


6. Thinking eating fat makes you fat

I’m not talking about things like pizza, cheeseburgers, hot dogs etc etc etc. I’m talking about hormone balancing foods like avocados and nuts for example. Eating healthy fat helps the body absorb nutrition. I eat avocados, nuts and drink coconuts. Here’s a photo of me in the Maldives, do I look over weight to you? 

The other week in Barcelona I took the picture above of my lunch from Le Pain. I’m eating avocados, chickpeas, tomatoes, carrots, kale, cucumber with red quinoa. I ordered a side of hummus which I put in my salad and added some olive oil, lemon, balsamic vinegar with salt and pepper. I ate that entire meal (including the bread! Yes, I avoid gluten/wheat however on this occasion I indulged!). As you can see I don’t ‘eat like a rabbit’ I actually eat large amounts of real food.



7. Eating and drinking artificial ‘diet foods’ does in fact make you fat

Look at everyone who's been on a ‘diet’ forever and examine the foods they’re eating. You’ll see ‘low in sugar and fat’ foods but they’re filled with artificial sweeteners and substitutes like corn syrup. They can’t lose weight no matter how much diet food they're on because the body is trying to deal with artificial food. Unfortunately, these artificial foods can cause major stress to the body and trigger a list of horrible illnesses. Think #majorenvironmentalstress 


8. Acidity vs Alkalinity the big kicker

Some of these ‘Fad Diets’ are highly acidic to the body. When our bodies PH is out of balance and too acidic diseases can rear their ugly heads (another blog coming soon).


9. You can damage your heart

Forcing the body to work harder through poor nutrition and/or calorie restricting puts strain on your heart! Some ‘Fad Diets’ promote very large amounts of meat and dairy consumption for protein, others promote calorie restricting. Just ask a cardiologist and they will tell you this can be damaging to your heart.


10.  You need healthy nutrition to support healthy blood cells

Certain ‘Fad Diets’ restrict vital key nutrients we require to maintain our overall health and support our red blood cells. Long term anemia causes our red blood cells to be deprived of iron. This can cause many health issues like cancer, kidney disease and rheumatoid arthritis.


Instead of ‘faD dieting’ here are some suggestions:

Making changes can be very overwhelming therefore little by little we can make them together. Maybe start by once a day making positive healthy eating changes.

For Example:

Monday – Start your week with a juice or smoothie OR have a vegetarian dinner (aka meatless Monday).

Tuesday – Have a healthy salad or soup for lunch incorporating ‘healthy fats’ like avocado, nuts and seeds. If you’re having a soup put some Chia seeds into it.  

Wednesday – Dinner again go meatless and opt for some beans instead. Either with a large vegetable salad or soup. Make a fresh ‘pasta sauce’ from scratch using tomatoes, onion and garlic with herbs like basil. Use quinoa instead of pasta. Quick, healthy and filling!

Thursday – Have a juice or smoothie for breakfast.

Friday - Have a juice or smoothie for breakfast

Saturday - Have a juice or smoothie for breakfast

Sunday – At some stage in the day have juice or smoothie preferably before midday. If you’re hungover and eating bacon and eggs then incorporating a green juice will serve you well!



So what does the ‘Big 3’ Stress Solutions Puzzle look like when it comes to Why FaD Diets Are Harmful and Don’t Work but Lifestyle Changes Do!


I’ve never been a fad dieter because I’ve never needed to diet. The secret to maintaining a healthy weight is about lifestyle choices. Finding balance and working with your body, not against it!

I’ve travelled the world a few times over and visited a lot of cities. I see all the wealthy women who look like they’re on constant diets who have not aged well.

People I know who have been struggling to maintain a healthy weight, again are the ones who are on diets or going on a diet again soon. They put their bodies under so much physical and environmental stress they end up emotionally stressed due to health issues.

Remember my motto for positive change is ‘Little Puzzle Pieces Create a Big Picture’…The key to maintaining a healthy weight is about making changes. Start by eliminating processed foods like chips, lollies, candies, crisps and eating take out like pizza and burgers. Incorporate fresh foods into your eating. Slowly make these changes because it’s less stressful and easier on the body and mind.

Over the course of time, I’ll be slowly doing some recipes however that’s not my forte. Therefore, here’s a great website of a nutritionist which I really like. I’ll admit her old website was a little easier to navigate but you can still get some great recipes from here http://nutritionstripped.com/category/recipes/ or buy her book. Please note I have NO affiliation with Nutrition Stripped. They don’t even know I’ve put this link in my blog post!

Start slowly and make the positive eating changes. 

Until next time be thoughtful, be mindful, be present. This is Character 32 doing her best to help you!


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