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Walk into any bookstore and you’ll see an entire section dedicated to diets and weight loss. Ask 10 different people who were successful with their weight loss goals and you’ll probably get 10 different answers about what worked for each one. There’s the vegan camp and the paleo camp; the low-carbers and the low-fatters; the raw foodies and the juice cleanses – so how can you narrow it down and figure out which diet works for you? Well, the answer may be simpler than you think. The best diet for you is the one you can stick to.

Research shows that there’s really no “magic trick” to losing weight. Many popular diet plans result in weight loss, reduced cholesterol, and healthier insulin levels when adhered to for a few months; however, when diet participants are followed for a year, there seems to be a pattern where compliance goes out the window and much of the lost weight comes back. So how can you prevent this dreaded yo-yo dieting?

Find a diet plan that works for you. For most, it’s all about moderation. If you choose a diet that eliminates all sources of carbohydrates, think to yourself “will I be able to follow this for a year or more?”. Sure, the dramatic weight loss claims can pull you in – and many of these diets are successful on delivering on these claims – but what’s the point in losing 10 pounds in two weeks if you can’t keep it off for more than a month?

Here are some tips for choosing the right diet plan for you:

  • Pull from several different types of diets to create something that fits into your cultural and personal preferences.
  • Find support. Whether it’s from family, friends, or a supportive weight loss clinic like Valley Medical, support is key. Although it’s helpful to find someone who has the same goals as you, you don’t have to be following the same diet plan to provide a source of support for each other.
  • Eat a variety of food choices – lean proteins, fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, healthy fats. The key to avoiding boredom is to keep things fresh. Healthy food doesn’t mean bland food.
  • Adapt to the seasons. Part of the fun of the changing seasons is the seasonal foods that become available. Allow your diet to adapt as the seasons change. This is another way to keep it fresh and interesting.

Have you found a diet plan that works for you? If so, what are your best tips for sticking to it for the long-term?

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