While having a proper workout routine can help you shed a few kilos, nothing works better than having a proper diet plan that gives your body the nutrients it needs, while taking away the unwanted carbs, fats and calories that we can certainly do without.
Keto, paleo, 16:8 fasting, 5:2 fasting, sirtfood and the list is long! There are so many types of diet plans out there and it’s so hard to choose the one that best suits our needs. And according to Dr Pankaj Kumar, an expert on weight loss and founder of Diet Plus Minus, the decision to go on a strict diet is a massive undertaking. You will have to incorporate several food items into your diet while eliminating others. And when losing weight is your priority, you should only follow the most effective diet plan suggested by nutritionists and dietitians after proper assessment.
To help you choose the right diet for you, we asked the expert to share some inside tips with our readers. Here’s what he shared!
Tips to pick a healthy diet
According to the nutritionist, losing weight healthfully is a long-term endeavour and there isn’t a simple solution for it. And, he suggests that if you’re planning to go on a diet, you must pick something that doesn’t involve cutting out any of your favourite food items.
When trying to decide on a new diet, Dr Pankaj Kumar recommends asking yourself the following:
1. Is it realistic for you to keep up with this diet plan? Can you do it regularly, seven days a week? “Because if you don’t, the minute you stop doing it, you’ll probably gain the weight back,” he says
2. Do you still feel hungry after eating your meals? He claims that it will be difficult to maintain a diet in which you constantly feel hungry. All those cravings will win in the end. “In many cases, this kind of situation leads to excessive eating or even bingeing,” he says
3. Can you carry on with your regular activities while dieting? Dr Pankaj Kumar advises people to think about whether or not their diet permits social eating, occasional ice cream consumption, and restaurant brunch fare. He warns that this is not the right diet to try if you think it will require you to change your lifestyle for a short time
4. Will your diet meet your body’s requirements? As Dr Kumar puts it, this is “the most important” question to ponder. He warns against following “any diet that prescribes intensely low calories,” such as the 1,200-calorie diet.
In the end, he says, “a good diet plan will easily become a part of your lifestyle without causing any uneasiness.”
Also read: Expert talk: Doctor reveals how sedentary lifestyle leads to cardiac ailments
When is it appropriate to switch to a new diet plan?
It’s quite possible to make the wrong diet choice. And, within a few days, you will realise whether the diet plan is working for you or not. So, how much time you should give it? “Not very long,” Dr Pankaj Kumar says.
You should monitor your new diet on a daily basis. Here are a few things to keep in check:
1. How well you’ve managed to stick to the diet?
2. Is there anything you did particularly well?
3. Your shortcomings and what you could have done better?
4. Is your hunger satisfied by the food you eat?
5. The extent to which your diet influences your mental state?
6. How is the diet affecting other aspects of your life?
Dr Pankaj Kumar advises that if the answers to the above questions don’t meet your expectations, your diet isn’t right and you should probably give up.
“If you’re losing 1-2 pounds per week, you’re doing great,” Dr Kumar shares. “The best diet is the one that doesn’t feel like a diet. The plan incorporates all food groups, instructs on proper portion control, and offers advice on healthy cooking. The ideal eating plan is not a diet at all, but rather a lifestyle.”