So you decided to embark upon a diet that your friend circle has raved about for months! You see a dramatic change in them and you think you can try it too. What’s the harm? You think.
More often than not, what seems to be working for others, does not really work for us. Our bodies are unique and a one size fits all diet might show short term results, but whether it will have long term consequences on other parts of your body, that is a question that has to be the deciding factor and for which you must, after all your research, you must go and speak to your nutritionist and/ doctor.
Question 1 : What is my diet based upon?
You need to understand if your diet starves you of certain food groups or deprives you of some nutrients. The more deprivation, the higher the likelihood of the diet of being only short term. The human body is made to enjoy all food groups and each food group performs a critical function in keeping the body healthy. If you’re not doing the diet under strict supervision, chances are, you’ll do more harm than good to yourself.
Question 2: Does my diet fit into my lifestyle seamlessly?
We live in a cutthroat environment, we’re very busy all day, we have a lot of pressure and we just don’t have time, or can afford to spend a lot on diets and food items that do not necessarily fit into our lifestyle. You diet should always be in tune with what your lifestyle is. Depriving yourself of certain foods, or spending too much time making a snack or a healthy dish will seem do-able during the first week, but after that you will slack. So choose a diet that is as flexible as you are and allows you a lot of options in case you can’t find the time to make them. Your diet should also contain foods that help you maintain your energy throughout the day. You should not be left thinking about food and what to eat even after you’ve had your food.
Question 3 : Is my diet a culture fit?
You live in a certain country, in a certain climate, were brought up in a certain cultural environment. Your food habits have been nurtured in a certain way. It is very important to understand how your new diet is incorporating your culture because that is what is important in sustaining your diet. Remember, fitness is a lifestyle. Your diet has to seamlessly, or atleast majorly be mindful of food items you are surrounded by. Seasonal, local foods are necessary to combat the influences of the environment you are in. Don’t fall for traps that food marketing sets for you where you have to pick a food item that is not grown in your country. It will be expensive and chances are, will not be very compatible with your body.
Question 4 : What are the pros and cons of my diet?
When a friend suggests a diet, do you read up on it? Make sure you do. If you’re not already consulting a nutritionist, you must know the diet inside out before you try to experiment it on your body. Remember, you have only one body. Be wise and research all the pros and cons in detail. If it helps, talk to the friend about the difficulties they face when following the diet. Always get a blood test done to know where you’re at, consult with a nutritionist or doctor before you embark on the journey.
Question 5 : How much does my diet cost me on a monthly basis
Like we said earlier, your diet should be according to the lifestyle you lead, how much disposable salary you have and according to how much you’re willing to spend on it. This does not mean just money, but also time, energy, social life.
Question 6: What kind of exercises am I allowed on this diet
It is true that fitness is 70% diet and 30% exercise. However, if your diet is promising you the moon without asking you to exercise, there’s something shadily short term about it. Exercise is very important for the body and must not be excluded from your lifestyle. Your diet should let you have the energy to walk atleast 30 minutes in a day, walk/run up a flight of stairs, or do light yoga. You should not feel lightheaded or giddy after the exercise. If you do, you need to immediately speak with your nutritionist or doctor and see what’s happening with your diet.
Question 7 : Does this diet have enough nutrients that will be good for my gut?
Often, when trying on a new diet, we ignore our gut health. Most deprivation based diets are catastrophic for the gut. Ignoring gut healthy food items lead you into developing gastritis, constipation, diarrhea, hyperacidity etc. Talk to your doctor or nutritionist and research on the longer term effects of this diet on your gut. Remember a healthy gut is the key to a lot of your problems.
Question 8: What does my doctor/nutritionist have to say about my diet plan?
Doctors and nutritionists specialise in understanding the body and effects on it due to various food combinations. They know and have seen a lot of people like you, so don’t be afraid to discuss the pros and cons of the diet with them. Trust them to be the right people to guide you through it.
Fitness is a lifestyle. Your diet should be culturally and seamlessly adaptable into your lifestyle for it to be effective for your body and mental health.