Dieting “Tips” That Could Actually Be Dangerous
By Danielle Fontana , Digital Editor |
As women, we always think we need to look better or lose more weight, but the flood of dieting advice that’s constantly rolling in can often prove counterproductive and dangerous. We reached out to certified nutritionist and physician Dr. Taz Bhatia to find out which “tips” do more harm than good not only on our physiques, but our overall health.
Dr. Bhatia explains that while eating too much can definitely cause weight gain, eating too little can have the same effect. “Dropping your calories dramatically during a ‘fad diet’ for longer than a week can trick your metabolism into believing it’s in starvation mode, discouraging weight loss,” she says.
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“Labeling can fool us into believing that low-fat or fat-free foods are somehow healthier than their full-fat counterparts,” explains Dr. Bhatia, adding that research is suggesting otherwise, as full-fat foods can satisfy us quicker, ultimately leading us to eat less.
Dr. Bhatia explains that while the carbohydrate-heavy diet we often see in America has gotten us into trouble with obesity, completely avoiding carbs can lead to problems of its own—fatigue, insomnia and anxiety, to name a few. "Ditch the simple carbohydrates, but add in the complex ones from sweet potatoes, brown rice or quinoa."
Detoxing For Weight
Although this trend is intended to help us reset unhealthy habits, Dr. Bhatia says that it too can have adverse effects. “The danger here is the yo-yo effect, where we oscillate between good detoxes and full out bad behavior.” Dr. Bhatia suggests trying a detox for a few days, but not as a weight-loss solution, as well as doing an Epsom bath to reduce bloating. “This helps to pull water out of the body, which helps to reduce bloating and swelling, which is a favorite detoxifying effect." We recommend Dr. Teal’s Detoxify and Energize with Ginger and Clay Epsom Salt Soaking Solution.
“Sugar is now recognized as the number one food enemy, but that doesn’t make artificial sugars any better,” says Dr. Bhatia, who adds that most of the sugar substitutes—think Splenda, aspartame and Stevia—are heavily processed and still affect insulin regulation, which is a key factor in weight management. “A better option is to have the real sugar, but just consume less!”