What people like about diets is that they remove the guesswork and offer simple rules to follow, but you must separate the healthy ones from the gimmicks. The wrong fad diet can throw you into a yo-yo pattern of weight fluctuation that is hard to break out of. To help sort through it all, the people at health.com asked 40 experts and put together a list of the healthiest diets in America. A closer look shows that certain diets share common areas of focus, which makes it easier to find one that suits your life.
Sometimes it is as simple as calories in versus calories out, but you need the right approach. The Volumetrics diet focuses on foods that are less dense in calories but take up a lot of space, so you feel full. You: On A Diet was co-written by Dr. Oz and takes a light hearted approach to simply explain how to reduce calories, while The Spectrum and Eating Well diets include by the numbers calorie patterns that you can chart and follow.
For those that have tried many diets and have had trouble sticking to them, there could be some deeper issues involving the relationship with food. The classic approach of Weight Watchers works off of support from others, offers a flexible points system, and keeps dieters accountable to a buddy. The Solution bills not as a diet, but as a way to find the root causes of emotional and behavioral overeating, while The Sonoma Diet trains people how to savor food, eat less, and have a healthier outlook on food in general. Another frequent guest from the Oprah show, Bob Greene, wrote The Best Life Diet which takes a realistic approach to making lasting lifestyle changes slowly so that they stick.
No matter how good your diet is, it is always important to include exercise in your plan. The Step Diet does this by helping dieters set walking goals in terms of number of steps per day and gives them techniques and tools to do this, such as the use of pedometers. The Structure House Diet actually was the highest rated diet, and it came from a weight loss clinic before it was a book. Its focus is filling your life with activities and enrichment that get you moving and take the focus off of food.
All of these top diets were selected because they have a well rounded approach, but each one excels in a different area. To be successful with them, the first step is being honest with yourself about what you can and cannot follow. Once you know that, you can choose a plan that fits those traits for a higher chance of success.