With resolutions running rampant right now, everyone’s thinking about weight loss, but knowing which diet is the best one for you can be quite the conundrum. Fortunately, the U.S. News & World Report has done some of the work for us.
They recently came out with a study ranking 29 of the most popular diets in seven different categories, including the Best Overall Diets. The government-endorsed DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diet got top honors. DASH was originally developed by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute to lower blood pressure.
The theory behind this diet is that nutrients like potassium, calcium, protein and fiber are crucial to fighting and preventing high blood pressure. This diet emphasizes eating healthy foods that many people are already consuming, like fruits, veggies, whole grains, lean protein and low-fat dairy and avoiding anything calorie and fat-laden and red meat. You can get more in-depth information about DASH and the diet guides here.
The diet rankings were done with the help of 22 health experts with specialties in nutrition, diabetes, heart health, human behavior and weight loss. They reviewed detailed information and assessments gathered by U.S. News reporters and editors to determine the best diets in seven different categories. Aside from Best Overall Diet other categories include Best Weight-Loss Diets, Best Diabetes Diets, Best Heart-Healthy Diets, Best Commercial Diet Plans, Best Diets for Healthy Eating, Easiest Diets to Follow and Best Plant-Based Diets. The experts ranked the diets based on how easy they are to follow, their ability to produce short-term and long-term weight loss, their nutritional completeness, how safe they are and their potential for preventing and managing diabetes and heart disease.
Along with the DASH diet, which was ranked as the No. 1 Best Overall Diet, other top-ranking diets in the same category include:
#2 TLC Diet: The TLC diet (Therapeutic Lifestyle Changes) was created by the National Institute of Health. It’s a solid diet plan that promotes good cardiovascular health by vastly decreasing your saturated fat intake. By cutting out saturated fats like fatty meat, whole-milk dairy and fried foods, this diet help lower bad LDL cholesterol by eight to 10 percent in six weeks. The TLC diet requires a more “do-it-yourself” approach than some of the other commercial diets.
#3 Mayo Clinic Diet: This diet features the Mayo Clinic’s take on eating healthy and making it a lifelong habit. It requires followers to reorient their eating habits by breaking bad ones and replacing them with good ones through the help of the Mayo Clinic’s food pyramid. The Mayo Clinic’s pyramid focuses on fruits, veggies and whole grains. These foods are low in calories allowing followers to eat more while still losing weight. The diet claims that you’ll shed six to 10 pounds in two weeks and continues losing one to two pounds weekly until you hit your goal weight.
#4 Mediterranean Diet: This diet emphasizes eating fruits, vegetables, olive oil, fish and other healthy options much like what people living in countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea consume. People in those countries typically live longer and suffer less from cancer and cardiovascular disease than most Americans, making their diet desirable for healthy living. This diet also emphasizes the important of an active lifestyle, weight control and a diet low in red meat, sugar and saturated fat and high in produce, nuts and other healthy options.
#5 Weight Watchers: This is a simple to follow, smart and effective diet plan that results in both short and long-term weight loss. This diet was also ranked No. 1 in the Best Weight-Loss Diets category.The basic concept is that if you make healthy choices that satisfy your appetite you’ll ultimately eat less. Weight Watchers launched their PointsPlus program in November 2010, which assigns every food a points value based on its nutritional content and how hard your body has to work to burn it off. Each follower has a PointsPlus target meaning that they can eat almost anything they want until their points total is met for the day. Healthier foods with lower points become a more appealing way to eat as they can fill you up without adding a lot to your PointPlus target.
At the end of the day, it’s up to you to select the diet that’s the best fit for you, but the U.S. News & World Report rankings are a good way to get informed about which diets are the most healthy, effective, safe and easy to follow. For more weight loss tips visit here.