Weight Loss Diet Issues
One in three Australians claim they are on some type of “diet”, yet energy intake has increased and physical activity levels have decreased. Mathematical modelling suggests that weight loss is a simple matter, with limited inputs and outputs to be controlled. Yet most people who successfully lose weight return to their old eating habits, and within two years regain most of the lost weight.
Weight Loss Studies
The methodology and design of reported weight-loss studies have been questioned, especially in studies involving long term follow-up. Weight loss can be a treatment effect (weight loss to improve diabetes control) or it can be an outcome of some other treatment (medication used to produce weight loss), making randomised controlled trials difficult to interpret.
The lure of rapid weight loss promised by each new popular diet is undoubtedly compelling. A survey in the United States found that more than one in five dieters used fad diets. Fad diets feed into the psyche of people who seek to look better and feel better with the minimum of effort.
Simple Dietary Changes Help
Sensible eating for weight loss often does not appeal to people who feel they are already doing the best they can. However, very simple dietary changes, followed diligently, can often produce effective weight loss at a rate that can be maintained over the longer term. Conversely, when weight loss is too fast, changes in body composition, especially the loss of lean body mass, can compound the problem of overweight in the longer term.
Long Term Weight Gain Among Dieters
One large study reported an overall increased risk of major weight gain in the long term (at 6 and 15 years) in those who undertook weight-loss attempts (dieting) at baseline. However, these findings do not rule out the potential success and benefit of weight-loss programs which aim to encourage permanent changes in behaviour.
Healthy Diet and Weight Control
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