How to Evaluate a Diet

This article was published by Dylan Irving on: 03/7/19 4:21 PM

Let’s get one thing straight:

When I say “diet” I am referring to the dictionary definition (first listed) by @merriamwebster: “food or drink regularly provided or consumed.”

I use the word “diet” to describe a way of eating. That’s it.

Okay, now that we’re on the same page…

Yesterday we talked about not playing diet hopscotch. Today we’re talking about how to decide if a diet is worth trying or sticking to.

1️⃣Does it fit your preferences? Preferences” DOES NOT MEAN “Dylan, I just really prefer eating cheesesteaks and pizza and “that’s it.” What it DOES MEAN is this, for example: if you really love fruit, it wouldn’t be a great idea to try keto (in which you wouldn’t eat fruit). Why? Restricting foods you enjoy will lead you to crave them more, and that will make adhering to your diet REALLY CHALLENGING.

⭐️A good diet has room for foods you enjoy and are already used to eating AND gives you wiggle room for the occasional “less-than-optimal” foods, such as cheesesteak and pizza.

2️⃣Does it fit your lifestyle? Do you have frequent breaks at work to eat? No? Choosing a diet where you need to eat 5 meals per day won’t work. Do you travel much? Then going gluten-free would probably be really challenging. Do you wake up really hungry? Intermittent fasting might not be right for you.

3️⃣Are you able to track progress? You need to have measurable ways to track progress like weight, body size (measuring or size of clothing), blood markers, etc. 

⭐️If you choose a diet that claims to balance hormones or “rid the body of toxins” yet doesn’t give you ways to measure those things OR EVEN TELL YOU WHAT THOSE THINGS ARE (or if the cost of frequent blood work is prohibitive), how do you know whether or not it’s working? HINT: YOU DON’T. ⭐️

4️⃣Did you get results? Results you could actually see and track? Remember, my recommendation is that once you pick a diet, you stick to it for 12 weeks. Getting results, whatever they may be, is kind of a requirement if you’re going to continue with whatever diet you select. If you don’t, modify your plan or try something else.

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My name is Dylan Irving. I’m a personal trainer who specializes in body and lifestyle transformations through customized fitness and nutrition guidance.

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