Diet Fads: Supermarket Sheep

Written by Virginia Bola, PsyD

Eighteen or twenty years ago, I was into high protein, high fat, low carbohydrate diets, courtesy ofrepparttar original Atkins Diet Revolution and, to an even greater extent, Stillman's Quick Weight Loss Diet (which I must admit I still prefer to Atkins but that's merely personal taste). Atrepparttar 141176 time, every aisle was loaded with labels proclaiming Low Fat or Reduced Fat. I didn't care about fat and sought much different information. Unfortunately, low fat was "in" and I felt alone and abandoned.

With a certain sense of resentment, I tracked downrepparttar 141177 carbohydrate costs of a wide variety of food, keeping a sharp eye on ingredients, calorie levels, and nutritional values. Certain items were strangely emblazoned with banners announcing low fat: pasta sauce, potato chips, candy bars, and ice cream. I was puzzled: how could certain foods, full of fat to their very core, be low fat? How could allrepparttar 141178 fat be removed and there be anything left?

I became fascinated with certain labels. Have you ever, for example, readrepparttar 141179 labels on those flavored coffee creamers? Zero fat. Zero carbohydrates. Zero protein. Zero calories. How can anything we put in our mouths have zero calories? A negligible amount, maybe, but absolute zero? What is in that stuff? Or is it virtual food, existing only in our mind's eye as a kind of edible hologram?

Mercifully,repparttar 141180 low fat craze died its natural death. Atkins and similar regimens took over andrepparttar 141181 low fat labels were reprinted (corporate recycling at its finest) to read Low Carb. Suddenly, everywhere you looked, there were foods recast as low carb - again withrepparttar 141182 pasta sauce,repparttar 141183 potato chips,repparttar 141184 candy bars, andrepparttar 141185 ice cream.

I was curious. Hadrepparttar 141186 manufacturers taken out all those carbs and putrepparttar 141187 fat back in? Where did those carbs go? Are there vast dumpsites inrepparttar 141188 desert where unwanted carbs are buried - next to worn tires, plastic bags, and nuclear waste?

Rating The Diets, A Mindless Exercise

Written by Virginia Bola, PsyD

There has been a recent surge inrepparttar experts weighing in (pun intended) on popular and celebrity diets to rate them in terms of effectiveness, nutritional adequacy, and balance. Look atrepparttar 141175 latest crop of magazines, Internet news reports, and television specials.

What is a semi-motivated would-be dieter to do?

Every diet listed seems to give rise to a chorus of criticism. Either it contains too few fruits and vegetables, not enough fiber, not enough fat, or too few calories. The glycemic index is too high or too low,repparttar 141176 nutritional content of its staples are not good enough, there is too much or too little of something.

Who rates what we are eating now? We simply pig out on everything from pizza, to fast food, to snacks (did you know that potato chips arerepparttar 141177 most popular snack food in America - accompanying 32% of our lunches?), desserts, ice cream and beer.

While it would be nice, I suppose, to have a population who ate only healthy foods, in moderation, exercised daily, and took care to ingest at leastrepparttar 141178 minimum requirement of vitamins and minerals, that is not reality, my friend. We overeat on allrepparttar 141179 wrong foods, we avoid regular exercise likerepparttar 141180 plague, and huff and puff our way into enlarged bodies that are twenty to fifty pounds heavier than our frames deserve.

Any way that we can take off some or all of that weight is worthwhile. No one is going to stay on any ofrepparttar 141181 popular diets for a lifetime, let's face it. We look at them as temporary (which is part ofrepparttar 141182 problem, but I digress) fixes. The last thing we need are experts who make us afraid to start because we might not be obtainingrepparttar 141183 right nutrition. Or do we take a certain degree of self-satisfaction in telling ourselves that we can't start untilrepparttar 141184 "perfect diet" is identified?

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