Everywhere you turn, someone is proclaiming the latest fad to be the best diet ever. These bold claims may be a little (or a lot) overrated, according to recent studies.
At the Yale University Prevention Research Centre, scientists evaluated hundreds of different studies that look at different diets. Everything from the low carb, to the Mediterranean, to the Paleo, to vegan, to low glycemic to vegetarian, and more, were compared to see which one could lay claim to being the “best.”
Ultimately, they found that there was not one specific diet that could confidently claim to prevent heart disease, diabetes or obesity, but each had certain pros and cons.
Findings did reveal that certain diets did help lower the risk of developing heart disease, diabetes, obesity and certain neurological diseases, and the diets that were most helpful had several things in common.
First, they included a low amount of processed foods. Processed foods are closely linked to many chronic health problems. Second, the diets were heavily plant-based. Third, any meats or animal products that were allowed as part of the diet were related to plant-based diets in the animals.
What does this mean for the average person? You have to understand that there is no magic formula for good health, other than overall healthy eating and healthy lifestyle. Following a specific diet is not going to fix everything, but an overall healthy lifestyle is certainly going to help limit your risk of developing heart disease, diabetes, cancer, neurological problems, obesity and more.
While each of the diets evaluated certainly had pros and cons, there is not one diet that is right for every person. More importantly, it is the principles behind the diets, the idea of trying to eat healthy and stay disciplined, that are going to make a difference.
In conclusion, it is important to carefully consider any fad diets before jumping on board. When you limit processed foods and fatty snacks, include plenty of fruits and vegetables, and keep your diet well balanced, you are going to be far healthier than anyone who does not follow this simple advice.
Eating real food is what is best for you, it is what humans have done for centuries to stay healthy and it is still the best plan. So go ahead and follow vegan, Paleo, Mediterranean or whatever diet you choose, as long as you are following a healthy lifestyle, too!
SOURCES: http://www.prevention.com/food/healthy-eating-tips/new-diet-analysis-compares-vegan-paleo-and-low-carb-diets;http://www.cnn.com/2008/HEALTH/12/29/healthiest.diets/index.html?iref=newssearch; Image courtesy of mrsiraphol / FreeDigitalPhotos.net