Weekly Wellness: Is dieting worth it?

The concept of dieting seems great on paper or in theory, but it is often something many of us end up struggling with. There are different dieting fads and programs, such a Nutrisystem, juicing and even going vegan. We’re increasingly shown these fads might not be worth it at all and are sometimes more trouble than they’re worth.

Dieting is basically restricting. The word “restricting” sounds negative because it is. Every diet has strict guidelines of what we absolutely can and cannot eat. This puts tremendous pressure on us to stick to those guidelines, no matter how our bodies feel. Weight loss shakes or bars, for example, are not a good solution for long term weight loss. Yes, they may seem to help at first, but they’ll only continue to help if you drink/eat them for the rest of your life. I’d say these methods are good for kickstarting weight loss or occasional consumption, but not for anything long term. They’re great add-ins when you’re on-the-go or have nothing else. However, it’s not realistic to drink weight loss shakes whenever you’re hungry and feel satisfied.

A lot of people wonder if gluten is bad for everyone and if it’s something to stay away from when trying to lose weight. Americans consume a lot of bread, but the only key to losing weight is to enjoy gluten products in moderation. Many people have said they feel a lot better after cutting out gluten for a certain amount of time, but nothing says we, as humans, should not consume it. If you are allergic or have an intolerance, of course you should steer clear. But if you’re just trying to be healthier, enjoy it in moderation. I’d recommend cutting it out for a little while and seeing how you feel. Experimenting with more controversial foods such as gluten or dairy may be beneficial to you in the long run, depending on your body.

2018 has brought about a lot of health trends that have proven beneficial. Some include Omega-9’s (or healthy fats), such as algae. It might sound gross, but Thrive Algae Oil is a hot commodity and seen as a superfood. Probiotics have been a topic of discussion for a long time, but now nutritionists recommend Good-Belly dairy-free products to get your daily dose of good bacteria. As odd as it may sound, cottage cheese is also becoming a prominent food in the weight loss department. This is because it packs a lot of protein and you can prepare it in many different ways.

All of these foods and fads are helpful for those looking to lose weight, but the key to actually losing the weight is incorporating these items into an already healthy diet and enjoying all foods in moderation. The best way to lose weight is to have an overall healthy diet combined with consistent exercise. It’s important to experiment and see what works for you because everyone’s bodies are different. Find what helps you and stick with it, but don’t be afraid to have a cheat day or cheat meal every once in awhile. Losing weight is a physical and mental process. Restricting isn’t the way to go.


Tessa Pawlik is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at tessa.pawlik@uconn.edu.