Whenever somebody wants to lose weight, they automatically go on a “diet.” The idea is that if they can shift their eating patterns temporarily, they’ll be able to lose weight, tone up, and achieve a coveted “body transformation.” By restricting calories or certain food groups, we hope that we can somehow fight the flab and get the body that we want.
Unfortunately, we’ve been sold a lie. Diets are actually worse than useless with restrictive feeding practices putting people at substantially higher risk of weight gain in the future.
Diets work against our psychology. As people, we don’t like the idea of scarcity. We don’t like the fact that we’re not allowed to eat foods from particular food groups. It’s artificial and goes against our basic biological need to survive.
Researchers have found that 95 percent of people gain back all the weight that they lose on a diet within five years. Most people restrict dramatically in the first few weeks and months, and then, as life goes on, begin to add back all of the foods that they’ve denied themselves. The result is weight gain, binge eating, and lower self-esteem.
As the following infographic points out, there is a better way: to change your lifestyle instead. Here, you’re not doing anything restrictive. You’re just eating more of the foods that are healthy and leaving the junk for special occasions. Importantly, you’re transitioning to eating patterns with proven historical success across a wide range of populations. If you’re interested, read on to find out more.
Infographic by University of Southern California