Of all the diet plans, which ones really work?
NEW YORK (WABC) -- When it comes to eating healthy or losing weight, choosing a diet can be overwhelming.
<p Now, there is new information on what works, and the answer may not be what you expect.
The number of diet books and plans out there is countless.
But a new editorial in the Journal of the American Medical Association calls for an end to the diet debates.
It says debating which diet is best has only "reinforced a fad diet industry that derives billions of dollars from a nation that is not getting healthier."
"It's showing it doesn't matter, you can eat all of these different ways and you're gonna get the same outcome," said PhD and co-author Sherry Pagoto of the University of Massachusetts.
And that outcome is not long-term weight loss.
But whether it's carbs or fat, most diets focus on eliminating certain foods.
"We want an enemy because if we have an enemy the question just become easier to solve, right? Oh it's sugar! So all we need to do is get rid of sugar," said Dr. Pagoto.
As co-author of the article and a psychologist, Dr. Pagoto says most diets do not work because they don't factor in the psychology of human behavior: we don't stick to diets we don't like.
So what does work? The authors say lifestyle interventions: that means working with nutrition and exercise experts to find one plan that you can follow.
"You want to almost construct your own diet that fits what you like, doesn't deprive you, isn't overly restrictive, doesn't involve a ton of foods that you're not used to eating and don't like," said Dr. Pagoto. "There have long term studies up to 20 years follow up on 3 continents that show these interventions are really effective in preventing diabetes weight loss."
But meeting with nutritionists and exercise experts is not cheap, so the authors say that should be a new focus of health care policy and insurance companies, to pay those professionals to help you lose weight and stay healthy long term.
health news, dr. sapna parikh
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