Battle of the Diets: How Your Food Choices Stack Up
As you begin to move into the new year, one thing will inevitably happen: people around you will start a diet to lose weight. You may hear the ringing of joy from your friends, family and coworkers when they begin to explain the new diet regimen they’re following to lose pounds in the following months. While this is all fine and dandy, something needs to be addressed about the way we eat and the meals that we consume: consistency is king! Regardless if you’re following the fasting approach, sticking with a plant-only framework or you’re sinking your teeth into some tasty cuts of meat, weight loss occurs only when you keep your nose to the grindstone. Located below is a brief breakdown of a few diets that are making the rounds this new year and how they compare.
Vegan vs Vegetarian
Most of us that talk about switching to a natural diet use the terms vegan and vegetarian interchangeably. In a sense, we may think they’re the same, but in reality they have different value systems in their core beliefs. For vegetarians, killing animals and harvesting their meat and organs for food is a a red flag — vegans believe this as well. However, the core component that separates these two diets is their belief on materials extracted from animals that can be used as food or regular household items.
For example, a vegetarian may still consume milk and other dairy products as no animals were harmed or killed in the process of extraction. With vegans, they believe dairy products are forcefully taken from an animal against their will and are not consumed within their dietary choices. Although these points may seem more philosophical in nature, science now proves that both the vegan and vegetarian diets are superior in terms of vitamin nutrient intake.
One Meal a Day vs Intermittent Fasting
If you’ve logged onto any type of social media in the last few days, you’ve inevitably heard people talking about intermittent fasting and one meal a day (OMAD). Essentially, these diet frameworks work by reducing the amount of time during the day in which you have to consume specific meals tailored for weight loss. One-meal-a-day individuals find that eating a single meal filled with copious calories, protein, carbs and healthy fats can hold them over for the entire day.
For those of us that are more active — and sane — we need numerous meals placed throughout the day to hold our energy levels to a manageable standard. Intermittent fasting is applied by fasting sixteen hours where only water and black coffee are permitted for consumption. After this, the individual is able to eat all of their meals within an eight-hour widow. Users that follow this method exclaim that they feel full and satisfied on lower calories as each meal is ingested in close proximity to the previous. More importantly, doctors are now finding that intermittent fasting can reverse the effects of type-2 diabetes, lower cholesterol and promote growth hormone secretion in healthy patients.
The Meat Eater’s Paradise
Alas, we now have an excuse to load up on bacon, eggs and sausage until our bellies are content! But before we explore the atkins vs keto debate, we must first understand why these diet frameworks have become popular. For keto practitioners, the diet allows them to generate unfathomable energy and combat against serious illnesses like Epilepsy. According to the literature released by the Epilepsy Foundation, healthcare professionals use the ketogenic diet as a last-ditch effort to thwart off unwanted seizures in patients that aren’t responding to regular medication.
With the atkins approach, users claim that their appetite suppression is through the roof and sudden cravings for sugary drinks and treats are non existent — hallelujah! What differentiates the atkins diet from keto is that amount of protein that an individual can consume during their day. The typical keto practitioner is recommended to keep their protein consumption around 20% of their daily caloric intake. For atkins users, they can eat as much protein as their heart desires. Meals filled with chicken breasts, eggs, steak and bacon are not only welcomed, they’re advocated!
Overall, all diets, even the ones we didn’t discuss here, have their benefits. When determining a diet you think would work best in your life, it really depends on what you want to accomplish. With that being said, you can use this helpful resource to see how these popular diets compare.