To say that the diet and weight loss industries are big business in the U.S. is like saying people love smartphones. It is so obviously seen everywhere you turn. Food manufacturers push their diet alternatives while supplement makers come up with all sorts of concoctions that supposedly burn fat with no effort. At the center of all this weight loss mayhem is what we all know as 'roller coaster dieting', also called yo-yo dieting.
Roller coaster dieting is easy to spot, according to the creators of the 2 Week Diet (http://the2week.diet/). It consists mainly of a crash diet designed to help people lose weight by either limiting calories or getting them to avoid entire categories of food altogether. Dieters do indeed lose weight, but they eventually plateau and start gaining it back. Leaving the diet and returning to normal eating patterns generally causes the individual to wind up heavier than when they began the diet.
Needless to say that roller coaster dieting is not good. It is actually unhealthy for many people. Just take a look at some of the things roller coaster dieting does in the examples below.
It Disrupts the Metabolism
We normally think of metabolism as the body's ability to burn food for energy. There is a lot more to it than that. Metabolism is also about using the energy derived from food in the right way, storing extra calories only when necessary, and controlling the appetite so as to prevent unnecessary hunger.
When a person engages in roller coaster dieting, the practice disrupts the metabolism. It does not take long for the metabolism to get completely out of whack to the point that it can no longer deal with food intake properly.
It Causes Cravings
People who roller coaster diet tend to obsessively count calories and stay away from certain kinds of foods that make losing weight difficult. Unfortunately, they also tend to avoid proteins and dietary fiber. This results in cravings for high-fat and high sugar foods.
Including an adequate volume of protein and dietary fiber helps to control cravings by keeping a person feeling fuller for longer. In addition, a meal consisting of appropriate levels of protein and dietary fiber should be immediately followed with a small amount of dietary fat.
It Decreases Calorie Burning Efficiency
In the midst of a diet, the body begins to adjust what it does with calories in response to having less to work with. Simply put, the body will start storing more of those calories as fat because it perceives that it is not getting enough food. This decreases the body's efficiency in burning calories. Can you guess the result? Increased calorie intake down the road results in more weight gain.
It Reduces Muscle Mass
Your body needs both nutrients and calories in order to maintain muscle mass. Unfortunately, roller coaster dieters tend to lose muscle mass along with their fat. This is not good. Making matters worse is the fact that it is harder to regain lost muscle mass once a diet has ended.
Roller coaster dieting is not good by any measure. A better way to lose weight, and keep it off, is through a sensible combination of diet and exercise along with making life changes that will prevent gaining the weight back in the future. Roller coaster dieting has never worked, and it never will.