The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Fad diets danger for healthy living

By Susan Tallant/managing editor

  With January behind us, it is time to reflect on our broken New Year’s resolutions.
   If you are one of the 76 million Americans who vowed never to eat another French fry but already have, it’s okay.
   According to U.S. News & World Report writer Amanda Spake, a growing number of health care professionals agree dieting is totally useless, and fad diets are doing more harm than good.
   A study in 2004 by the Journal of the American Dietetic Association indicates that yo-yo dieting increases weight.
   I feel better. I no longer need to agonize over how many points I can have for dinner. I no longer need to order a bunless hamburger, get ulcers from eating too many grapefruits or go through a boot camp to fight sugar cravings.
   No more weight-loss planning guides, calorie counters or expensive grocery lists for me. I’ll eat what I want.
   But there is a catch. No magic pill is involved. My new plan is to not really have a plan. Just eat less and move more.
   I will never super size again. I might even consider some healthy side choices like fruit. But if I just have to have a little trans-fat, I will eat only half of my fries.
   I will eat three meals per day on a smaller size plate and snack in-between. For snacks, I will eat more things that grow, which are better for me than things that come in a package.
   Chocolate truffles will again become my occasional sweet little reward because a little bit of dark chocolate is actually good for me.
   Scientists say an ingredient found in dark chocolate may produce beneficial cardiovascular effects, like those from fruits and vegetables, red wine and green tea.
   I’ll also move. Research shows the main reason people gain 10 pounds per year is from sedentary lifestyles.
   Weight-bearing exercises like walking, jogging, climbing, lifting weights or dancing will not only help slim my hips, they will help prevent bones fractures.
   An article in Postgraduate Medicine by JJ Fiechtner said regular exercise throughout life halves the number of hip fractures experienced by older people.
   According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), an estimated 10 million Americans have osteoporosis. This condition can be prevented by adding more calcium rich foods to the menu and exercising more often.
   So I will eat, dance and love me for who I am. But I will not make the same old New Year’s resolution next year.

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