Diet or Don't?
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Health and Wellness

Diet or Don't?

Don't be fooled by food and diet fads. Healthy doesn't mean unhappy.

Diet or Don't?

Lose 10 pounds in seven days! Take this pill and drop four sizes! This miracle fruit will help you lose weight fast!

… Any of those “catchy” slogans sound familiar? It seems there is a new magic pill, food, or diet regimen every time I turn around. 

In today’s world, it’s easy to get wrapped up in the idea of losing weight, especially fast. While it’s important to be healthy, you must keep some things in mind: 

1. Don’t get bogged down by diet fads. 

2. Skinny doesn’t always mean healthy or safe. 

3. Don’t go running and screaming at the mention of “fats.” 

4. Don’t be fooled by the word “diet.” 

5. Results WILL vary.   

Society has introduced countless fads to us over the years. The late 90’s brought the Atkins Diet, in which carbs were shunned. This strict diet has now been proven to be as equally effective as the majority of other diets. The 2000s have introduced a number of food ideas and crazes, such as the "meat and cheese" diet, the vegetable soup diet, or going gluten-free. 

Acai berries, avocados, pomegranates, and kale are among a list of healthy, yet arguably overrated, foods deemed to be miraculous for your body. While these foods are undoubtedly healthy, don’t think they are the only things you should eat. People try to make kale into candy and convince you to consume bee pollen, seeds, and roots that look like they were dug out of a dirt pile. Let’s not get too crazy. In truth, simple greens such as collard greens, spinach, and romaine lettuce, have all been proven to provide more vitamins and minerals than the ever famous kale. 

“Superfoods” are great, but remember they aren’t the only foods that are good for you. You don’t have to pay an arm and a leg for fancy fruits, seeds, and vegetables in order to be healthy. A variety of nutrients is important to a healthy diet. Your body needs an assortment of vitamins and minerals, found in different fruits, vegetables, and even meats and cheeses. The key is to not be black and white about your diet. 

Not all fats are bad. Avocados, eggs, nuts, and salmon are all examples of fatty foods, which are good for you. Natural fats are healthy in moderation. I’m not advising you to eat a jar of peanut butter with a spoon and excuse it as a way to add natural fats into your diet. Moderation is key

Remember that diets are not always the magic potion they may appear to be. The Jenny Craig diet obviously worked well for Jenny, but ole Sally’s body may not react the same. Sure, Jared lost an impressive amount of weight eating fresh at Subway. But you can’t necessarily expect to do the same. Our bodies are unique. So many factors play into weight. Height, gender, activity level, and food tolerance all affect the way your body maintains its weight. 

Obviously, I am no health expert or nutritionist. However, I am a college student who has suffered through the “Freshman Fifteen,” attempted to fight off the “Sophomore Sixty” and will do a double-take at anything that promises a skinnier me. I have learned that I can't be fooled by advertising and that ultimately, I should use self-control to achieve a healthier me. I don’t have to eat cardboard, rabbit food, or spend my whole month’s allowance at Earth Fare on one shopping trip, in order to be healthy. I have also learned that portion size is a big deal. Eating smaller meals is better for your metabolism and digestion system and can help you lose weight.

Being healthy in college can be even more challenging than the classes you are taking. Just remember that it can be as affordable and achievable as you make it. Losing weight and being healthy isn't about the extremes. So enjoy what you eat, and be aware of what and how much you are consuming. 

One last bit of advice: The 45-minute drive to Krispy Kreme is still acceptable on occasion … as long as the "HOT NOW" light is on. 

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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