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What is the best diet for me?

22 January 20210
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Its new year and it is a new you. For many of us we are looking at shedding a few of the Christmas or lockdown kilos. Weight loss is top of mind and our socials are filled with Keto diets, low carb, Mediterranean diet and many more. But what is right for you?

We have reviewed 5 of the top diets, Gluten free, Keto, Low carb, Mediterranean and Vegan. As you can see from the chart below they are all very similar except for the Vegan diet which is more about social and environment reasons.

The take away from our research is that we need to eat a balanced diet, with fresh fruit, vegetables, good sources of protein, fats, oils with a mix of grains and legumes. The quantities may vary from diet to diet, but the one thing nearly all of them limit or avoid is sugary and processed foods.


Vegan

The vegan diet has become very popular.

Increasingly more people have decided to go vegan for ethical, environmental or health reasons.

When done right, such a diet may result in various health benefits, including a trimmer waistline and improved blood sugar control.

Nevertheless, a diet based exclusively on plant foods may, in some cases, increase the risk of nutrient deficiencies.

Eat: Any plant based product. Tofu, Nuts, nut butters, seeds, whole grain cereals, fruits and vegetables.

Avoid: Vegans avoid anything that may come from a animal.

Meat and poultry: Beef, lamb, pork, veal, horse, organ meat, wild meat, chicken, turkey, goose, duck, quail, etc. Fish and seafood: All types of fish, anchovies, shrimp, squid, scallops, calamari, mussels, crab, lobster, etc

Dairy: Milk, yogurt, cheese, butter, cream, ice cream, etc. Eggs: From chickens, quails, ostriches, fish, etc. Bee products: Honey, bee pollen, royal jelly, etc.

Animal-based ingredients: Whey, casein, lactose, egg white albumen, gelatin, cochineal or carmine, isinglass, shellac, L-cysteine, animal-derived vitamin D3 and fish-derived omega-3 fatty acids.

Mediterranean

The Mediterranean diet is based on the traditional foods that people used to eat in countries like Italy and Greece back in 1960.

Researchers noted that these people were exceptionally healthy compared to Americans (and Australians) and had a low risk of many lifestyle diseases.

Numerous studies have now shown that the Mediterranean diet can cause weight loss and help prevent heart attacks, strokes, type 2 diabetes and premature death.

There is no one right way to follow the Mediterranean diet, as there are many countries around the Mediterranean sea and people in different areas may have eaten different foods.

This article describes the dietary pattern typically prescribed in studies that suggest it’s a healthy way of eating.

Consider all of this as a general guideline, not something written in stone. The plan can be adjusted to your individual needs and preferences.

Eat: Vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, legumes, potatoes, whole grains, breads, herbs, spices, fish, seafood and extra virgin olive oil. Eat in moderation poultry, eggs, cheese, yogurt. Rarely. red meat. Red wine in moderation 1 glass per day.

Avoid: Added sugar, refined (white) bread, pasta, refined oils, canola oil, margarine, processed meats, highly processed foods.

Low Carb

A low-carb diet is one that limits carbohydrates, primarily found in sugary foods, pasta, and bread. Instead of eating carbs, you eat whole foods including natural proteins, fats, and vegetables.

Studies show that low-carb diets can result in weight loss and improved health markers.  These diets have been in common use for decades and are recommended by many doctors.

A low-carb diet means that you eat fewer carbohydrates and a higher proportion of fat (with adequate amounts of protein as well). This can also be called a low-carb, high-fat diet (LCHF) or a keto diet.

However, not all low-carb diets result in ketosis.

For decades we’ve been told that fat is detrimental to our health. Meanwhile, low-fat “diet” products, often full of sugar, have flooded supermarket shelves. This has likely been a major mistake, that coincided with the start of the obesity epidemic. While this doesn’t prove causation, it’s clear the low-fat message didn’t prevent the obesity increase, and it is possible it contributed.

Studies now show that there’s no reason to fear natural fats.

Instead, on a low-carb diet fat is your friend. Simply minimize your intake of sugar and starches, make sure you are getting adequate protein, and you can eat all the fat you need to feel satisfied.

When you avoid sugar and starches, your blood sugar tends to stabilize and the levels of the fat-storing hormone insulin drop. This helps increase fat burning and may make you feel more satiated, thereby naturally reducing food intake and promoting weight loss.

Studies show that a low-carb diet can make it easier to lose weight and to control your blood sugar, among other benefits.

Best yet, there’s usually no need to count calories or use special products. All you need to do is to eat whole foods that make for a complete, nutritious, and filling diet.

Eat: Meat, fish, eggs, vegetables growing above ground and natural fats (like butter).

Avoid: Sugar and starchy foods (like bread, pasta, rice, beans and potatoes).

Gluten Free

A gluten-free diet is essential for managing signs and symptoms of celiac disease and other medical conditions associated with gluten.

A gluten-free diet is also popular among people who haven’t been diagnosed with a gluten-related medical condition. The claimed benefits of the diet are improved health, weight loss and increased energy, but more research is needed.

Gluten is a protein found in most grains. The gluten found in wheat, barley, rye and triticale (a cross between wheat and rye) can trigger serious health problems or other insensitivities. While other grains such as corn, rice and quinoa also contain gluten, they don’t seem to cause the same problems as wheat, barley, rye and triticale.

Eat:

Meats and fish. All meats and fish, except battered or coated meats.

Eggs. All types of eggs are naturally gluten-free.

Dairy. Plain dairy products, such as plain milk, plain yogurt and cheeses. However, flavored dairy products may have added ingredients that contain gluten, so you will need to read the food labels.

Fruits and vegetables. All fruits and vegetables are naturally free of gluten.

Grains. Quinoa, rice, buckwheat, tapioca, sorghum, corn, millet, amaranth, arrowroot and oats (if labelled gluten-free).

Starches and flours. Potatoes, potato flour, corn, corn flour, chickpea flour, soy flour, almond meal/flour, coconut flour and tapioca flour.

Nuts and seeds. All nuts and seeds.

Spreads and oils. All vegetable oils and butter.

Herbs and spices. All herbs and spices.

Beverages. Most beverages, except for beer (unless labelled as gluten-free).

Avoid: Wheat based products, wheat flour, bran, spelt, semolina. Barley, rye, malt, brewer’s yeast (beer)

Keto

The ketogenic diet is a very low carb, high fat diet that shares many similarities with the Atkins and low carb diets.

It involves drastically reducing carbohydrate intake and replacing it with fat. This reduction in carbs puts your body into a metabolic state called ketosis.

When this happens, your body becomes incredibly efficient at burning fat for energy. It also turns fat into ketones in the liver, which can supply energy for the brain.

Ketogenic diets can cause significant reductions in blood sugar and insulin levels. This, along with the increased ketones, has some health benefits.

Eat: Natural fats, meat, seafood, eggs, cheese, vegetables that grow above ground

Avoid: Fruit, Beer, potatoes, rice pasta, bread, chocolate, juice, soft drinks


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