There are several effective weight loss diets. Some may lower your appetite while other restrict calories coming from carbs and fat. Though these weight loss diets claim to be effective but it’s difficult to understand which one to follow. However, there is no weight-loss diet that work for everyone. What works for you may not work for everyone. Some of the most well-researched diets and eating plans include intermittent fasting, vegan diets, low-carb diets and low-fat diets.
Here are 7 most effective weight loss diets reviewed.
1. Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent fasting is an eating pattern that cycles between fasting and eating times. Rather than limiting the food you consume, it determines when you consume it. Therefore, it is among the most effective weight loss diets. The most common method of intermittent fasting is the 16/8 technique. This means skipping breakfast and limiting your regular eating time to eight hours and fasting for the rest of the day’s 16 hours. Similarly, intermittent fasting leads to calories restriction and makes the weight loss process very simple. Studies show that it causes 3–8% weight loss over 3–24 weeks, which is a lot compared to other weight loss diets. It can boost your metabolic rate by up to 14% and increase HGH (human growth hormone). In addition, it can cause less lean muscle loss compare to other diets. Intermittent fasting effects may also decrease inflammation markers of cholesterol, blood triglycerides, and blood sugar. (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)
Intermittent fasting may increase human growth hormone (HGH), improve insulin sensitivity, enhance cell repair, and alter gene expression.
2. The Low-Carb Diets
Low-carb diets, particularly for weight loss, have been common for centuries. There are several kinds of low-carb weight loss diets, but all require a reduction of 150 grams of carb consumption per day. The primary goal of this diet is to force your body to use more fat as fuel rather than using carbs as a primary energy source. People on low-carb diets eat more protein and fat while restricting the consumption of carb. When the intake of carbs is very low, fatty acids are transformed into ketones by the liver. In the absence of carbs, your body can use fatty acids and ketones as its primary source of energy. Many studies show that low-carb weight loss diets are helpful, particularly in people who are overweight. It also appears to be very effective in reducing dangerous belly fat accumulation around organs. (6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11)
People on low-carb diets usually achieve ketosis. Many studies notice that ketogenic diets result in weight loss twice as low-fat calorie-restricted diet.
3. The Atkins Diet
Atkins diet is the most popular weight-loss diet. It is a low carbohydrate, high fat, and high protein diet. Therefore, low-carb weight loss diets are very effective, which can suppress your appetite. This leads you to ingest fewer calories. However, this diet is divided into four phases. In the first phase, the carb consumption is limited to 20 grams a day for 2 weeks. Once you have achieved your target, you can slowly return to a healthy source of carbs. The Atkins diet was widely studied and discovered to result in quicker weight loss compared to low-fat diets. Studies show that low-carb weight loss diets are effective in targeting the most dangerous fat in your abdominal area. (12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17)
The Atkins diet that is low in carbohydrates, high in fat, and high in protein. For the first two weeks, limit carb consumption to 20 grams per day.
4. The HCG Diet
The HCG diet (human chorionic gonadotropin) is among restricted diets intended to cause very rapid weight loss of up to 2 pounds (1 kg) per day. Supporters of this diet claim it increases metabolism and fat loss without causing starvation. HCG is a hormone flow in early pregnancy at an elevated level. It means the body of a woman that she is pregnant and keeps producing hormones essential for fetal development. It was also used to address the fertility problems. As same as other weight loss diets, HCG diet is divided into three phases and prescribed for 6 weeks. (18, 19, 20)
You take HCG supplements in the first phase. In the second phase, you pursue an ultra-low-calorie diet of just 500 calories per day, along with drops of HCG supplements, pellets, injections, or sprays. You stop taking HCG in the third phase and increase your food intake slowly. Many studies conclude that weight loss is because of the ultra-low-calorie diet alone, not the HCG hormone. In addition, it is not clear that HCG reduces appetite. (21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26)
HCG (human chorionic gonadotropin) is a hormone that is present in high concentrations during early pregnancy. This diet’s proponents claim it boosts metabolism and fat loss without causing starvation.
5. The Paleo Diet
The Paleo diet comprises whole foods, lean protein, vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds, while discouraging processed foods such as sugar, milk and grains. More flexible Paleo weight loss diets alternatives allow dairy, such as cheese, butter and sweet potatoes. Study shows that the Paleo diet can cause substantial weight loss and decreased waist size. The diet also appears to be efficient in decreasing heart disease risk factors such as cholesterol, blood sugar, blood triglycerides, and blood pressure. (27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34)
Paleo diet also appears to be effective in lowering risk factors for heart disease, such as cholesterol, blood sugar, triglycerides, and blood pressure.
6. The Vegan Diet
The vegan diet restricts all animal products and has link with animal protection and cruelty. Veganism is vegetarianism’s most dominant type. It eliminates dairy, eggs, and products derived from animals, such as gelatin, honey, albumin, whey, casein, and some types of vitamin D3 in relation to restricting meat products. A vegan diet appears to be very efficient in people who want to lose weight without counting calories, as its very low-fat content and high fiber food which can make you feel fuller for longer. In comparison with other weight loss diets, they constantly associated vegan diets with reduced body weight and body mass index (BMI). (35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40)
Study of 18 weeks showed that people on a vegan diet lost 9.3 more pounds than people in the control group. They allowed the vegan group to consume until fullness, but calories had to be limited by the control group. Reducing calorie consumption is mainly coordinated with weight loss on vegan diets. Plant-based diets are associated with a lower risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and premature death. Many vegans who cannot fulfill their dietary requirements by diet alone should take supplements. It’s always best to talk to a health care professional before beginning a new vegan diet. (41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48)
Plant-based diets have been linked to a lower risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes. Many vegans who cannot meet their dietary needs through diet alone should take supplements.
7. The Dukan Diet
Dukan diet is a low-carb weight-loss diet divided into four phases. The two phases are weight loss and two are for maintenance. The amount of weight you need to lose relies on how long you remain in each phase. Each phase has a nutritional pattern of its own. Theses phases are based mainly on eating unlimited high-protein foods. The other phases require adding vegetables that are not starchy. In one research, females eating about 1,000 calories and 100 grams of protein per day following the Dukan diet lost an average of 33 pounds in 10 weeks. Also, many other studies show that high-protein low-carb diets can have significant benefits in terms of weight loss. These include an increase in metabolic rate, reduction of the hunger hormone, and an increase in several fullness hormones. (49, 50, 51, 52, 53, 54, 55, 56, 57, 58, 59 60)
Dukan diet is a four-phase low-carb weight-loss diet. The amount of weight you need to lose is determined by how long you stay in each phase.
Before diving into weight loss diets, it is crucial to check with your doctor and do the whole body check-up. What’s more! There are no ideal diets for weight loss. For you, the best diet is the one you can stick to in the long run.
- Intermittent fasting vs daily calorie restriction for type 2 diabetes prevention: a review of human findings. Transl Res. 2014.
- Alternate day calorie restriction improves clinical findings and reduces markers of oxidative stress and inflammation in overweight adults with moderate asthma. Free Radic Biol Med. 2007.
- Growth hormone and sex steroid administration in healthy aged women and men: a randomized controlled trial. JAMA. 2002.
- A randomized trial of a low-carbohydrate diet for obesity. N Engl J Med. 2003.
- A lower-carbohydrate, higher-fat diet reduces abdominal and intermuscular fat and increases insulin sensitivity in adults at risk of type 2 diabetes. J Nutr. 2015.
- A comparison of pregnancy rate before and after the administration of HCG in intrauterine insemination. Arch Gynecol Obstet. 2014.
- A Palaeolithic diet improves glucose tolerance more than a Mediterranean-like diet in individuals with ischaemic heart disease. Diabetologia. 2007.
- A multicenter randomized controlled trial of a plant-based nutrition program to reduce body weight and cardiovascular risk in the corporate setting: the GEICO study. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2013.
- Assessment of food intakes for women adopting the high protein Dukan diet. Rocz Panstw Zakl Hig. 2015.