Dieting Know-How

By: Jeremy Will, RD/LD
Registered Dietitian

Every couple of years a new diet emerges as the cure for weight loss and obesity–from Atkins, Paleo, and vegan to the now-popular Keto diet. Half of the articles you read claim it is the cure-all, while the other half assure you it is the worst thing you can do. Nutrition science is still a very young science relative to others, leading to many different opinions on the same topics. There are no “good” and “bad” diets, only what works for each individual. However, when choosing or considering a diet, there are definitely good and bad ways to approach it.

  • Do not choose an eating pattern based on someone else’s results. Everyone is unique. One person may not see the same results as another. Choose what is best for you.
  • Do your own research. “My buddy John lost 15 lbs. in 2 hours following Keto” is not research. Use government, university, and medical websites to learn the pros and cons of each diet type. You can learn a lot with a quick 10- to 15-minute search.
  • Be aware of deficiencies. Many diets eliminate one or multiple food groups leading to deficiencies. A good multi-vitamin or specific supplementation may not be a bad idea when beginning dietary changes.
  • Most importantly, be aware of what is happening on the inside when following a diet, especially extreme diets.  Weight is not the only indicator a diet is effective or not. Make sure you are having regular blood work done to monitor cholesterol, blood sugar, triglycerides, and other markers to ensure you are healthy on the inside.