Extreme Diet: FAIL!
If you're planning to give up all sweets, fats and exercise daily for the next 8 weeks in order to fit into your New Year's Eve dress, you're probably not alone. The good news is that you'll probably succeed. The bad news, it won't stay off.
A new study shows that might be better off taking your mother's advice to just "eat right." or at least, changing your eating habits. In the New England Journal of Medicine, Australian researchers measured the hormones involved in appetite regulation. 50 overweight or obese people who dieted for 10 weeks had their hormones measured before the diet, after and then 62 weeks later.
Turns out, your body doesn't appreciate being put "on a diet". The changes came in the levels of two hormones, ghrelin, hunger activator, and leptin, hunger deactivator. For up to a year after weight loss, there were increases in the hunger activator and decreases in the hunger deactivator hormones. According to researchers, this might be explained as an evolutionary adaptation to the threat of starvation.
The take-away is not that diets all diets are doomed to fail, but that depriving your body of nutrients and nourishment does not make it want to cooperate with your weight loss plans. Perhaps other, less radical notions than NO sweets or breads, could help dieters. Food nutritionists argue for portion control and foodies argue for "real food." Imagine that.
Image: Wiki Commons