As more and more people jump on the health and weight loss bandwagon, never has there been a time when people watch what they eat like now.
With endless diets available, finding the right one for you can get exhausting as you search through endless websites that claim to have the magic potion for your problems.
Before picking a diet however, certain factors come to play. What is the reason behind your diet? Is it to shed some pounds, food allergies or for health reasons?
This way, it is easy to pick the most suitable one for you. As you will soon find out, not all diets are made the same.
Media frenzy and trends aside, a proper diet should be well balanced with water, fruits, vegetables, nuts and whole grains to keep your body and mental state functioning at optimum.
Should you be on the search for a diet to meet a specific need, it is important to consult a doctor first before embarking on some of these life changing diet plans.
Here are a few of the many diets you should know about.
Good for lowering blood pressure, control of appetite and weight loss, the paleo diet comes from the philosophy of eating what our ancestors were able to hunter and gather thus also referred to as the caveman diet.
Dieters eat meat, fish, fowl, vegetable, fruits, seeds and nuts. Meat is strictly from grass fed animals only and the sugar only comes from fruit.
This diet completely eliminates processed foods, grains and dairy in most instances.
While it has many health benefits like lowering cholesterol, blood sugar and reducing heart related diseases, the exclusion of dairy, grains and legumes may create a deficit of calcium, fiber and other vital nutrients needed by your body.
2.The Atkins diet
Popular in the weight loss community, this is a four-phase plan that restricts carbs by one Dr Robert Atkins.
Although it has been updated to accommodate other variations, it focuses on insulin rapid fall and rise due to large amounts of refined carbohydrates.
When your insulin is high, the body conserves the energy from what you have eaten rather than breaking down the stored fats which leads to weight gain.
It begins with an induction phase where you eat 20g of carbs for two weeks then slowly introduce healthy carbs into your diet until you meet your body goals.
3.Plant based diet
In this type of diet, all your dietary needs should come from plant foods. However, modifications have been made and each has its own variation.
A source of confusion for many, vegan excludes all meat, dairy, poultry, eggs and seafood while the vegetarian diet excludes all the above but includes eggs and dairy.
Pescatarian on the other hand excludes meat and poultry but allows eggs, dairy and seafood.
Flexitarian or semi-vegetarian includes eggs and dairy and depending on the person he or she may have small amounts meat, poultry and seafood.
This diet has however come under heavy scrutiny for having highly processed foods labelled as vegan and are largely very unhealthy.
4.Raw food diet
Gaining in popularity due to its health benefits dieters are of the belief that a large part of your diet should consist of uncooked food. Ideally, it should be plant based and organic.
Somewhat of a vegan diet, it falls under three categories.
The raw omnivorous diet includes plant foods, raw or dried meat and raw animal products. The raw vegan only focuses on raw plant based foods while the raw vegetarian adds raw eggs and unprocessed dairy products to its plant based diet.