Dieting: What works for one, may not work for another.

By Elana Sims

The problem with dieting is that it does not work for everyone. When a commercial comes on the television telling you that in a recent study, participants doing the latest most popular diet lost an average of 30 pounds over a six-week period, you believe it. The pictures look real, and the doctors in the commercials seem valid. However, if you have ever looked close enough at the television during those commercials, you will see these words in small print, “results not typical.” Which most likely means the participants lost weight under special circumstances. They may have taken a dietary supplement that is not mentioned in the commercial, but had a dramatic affect on the results. The environment could have also been altered to aid in weight lost. For example, the participants may have been subjected to heat conditions in order to make them sweat more. Bottom line is, if you see “results not typical” on a commercial, do not get your hopes up. It may have worked for the people in the commercial, but that does not mean it will work for you.Dieting: What works for one, may not work for another. - Nutrition for the World

I have personally fallen for the diet fads. What can I say? The people in the commercial make it so believable. Last year, I fell victim to Hoodia. If you are not familiar with Hoodia, it is a dietary supplement that is supposed to suppress your appetite and help you lose weight. I saw a commercial for Hoodia and decided that it was something I wanted to try. I went on the website and saw that Oprah talked about it in her magazine as well as other dominant sources in our society. My mistake was not going to those individual sources and finding out if what they were saying was all positive, or just simply introducing this new dietary supplement. The results: it did not work, and there were side effects that I experienced but were not on the label as warnings.

On the good side, there are alternatives to taking dietary supplements that many people are trying. There are programs that do more than just alter your diet to help you lose weight.Jenny Craig andWeight Watchers are two programs that I have heard of that change not just how to eat, but your lifestyle. These programs are long term and do not require you to starve yourself in order to lose weight. They do not send you a product in the mail and then you never hear from them again. Instead, both of these programs offer “coaches” or counselors to help you on your journey. I happen to have two friends, one doing each program, which I have spoken to about their progress thus far. Here are their statements.

(Identities are not disclosed for privacy reasons)

Jenny Craig: “I visit Jenny every week to weigh in and buy my food. It is right down the street from my house, so it is not a struggle at all for me. I’ve been on the program for about two months now and I am definitely making progress. Right now, I purchase Jenny’s meals, but I am learning how to cook my own healthy meals at home, and will eventually substitute Jenny’s meals for my own."

Weight Watchers: “I started the Weight Watchers program after regular dieting failed me. I even went on a fast for a month and ended up gaining all of the weight back that I had lost. I heard about Weight Watchers and thought it wouldn’t hurt to try, so here I am. I’ve been doing the program for a little less than a month, but am very excited about it!"

I am not making a recommendation for the Jenny Craig Program or Weight Watchers. I am simply introducing them as alternative solutions. If you’re like me and have had problems in the past with weight loss because of diets that do not work, alternative solutions may be helpful.

If you would like more detailed information about Jenny Craig or Weight Watchers, please visit their websites.

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