Top 3 Diets for 2021
2021 is here, and even though much of the world is going through a time of great uncertainty, one thing is certain. The new year is the perfect time to take time to be healthier. Making sure your diet is healthy and balanced is one of the best methods to ensure general health, energy, and happiness.
However, not every diet works for everyone, so finding the right diet that works for you is a priority. It doesn’t matter if hundreds of people have found success with the Keto diet if you aren’t able to, or don’t particularly enjoy, eating large amounts of meat. The Keto diet won’t work for you because you will be struggling to even stay on the diet, without ever seeing results. To that end we have compiled three different diets that we consider to be the top choices. Hopefully you find a diet that appeals to you and excites you to pursue better, healthier, eating habits.
Our top three diets for 2021 are as follows:
The Mediterranean Diet:
Year after year this diet tops every list out there, and with good reason. The Mediterranean diet is easily the best diet out there. The key feature of the Mediterranean diet? It is a balanced diet that emphasizes plant-based eating. Unlike the Keto diet or the Atkins diet, both of which focus entirely on weight loss, the Mediterranean diet is focused on healthy eating, and general overall health. The Mediterranean diet is rich in whole vegetables and fresh fruit, as well as whole grains, fish, olive oil (which has myriad health benefits), nuts, legumes, and a bit of wine (red wine specifically), and dairy. As you can see this diet has something for everyone, and really focuses on eating healthy, but also getting full meals that fulfill your cravings.
The Mediterranean diet focuses on replacing processed and junk foods with a plant based diet (this does not mean you don’t eat meat, but that you consume less meat, and no processed meat, which is great for the environment). The key to success with the Mediterranean diet is the reduction in saturated fat and sugars in your diet. You replace saturated fat with foods high in fiber and protein, which typically results in lower total consumption and weight loss. With myriad health benefits beyond weight loss, such as improved heart and brain health, the Mediterranean diet is our top diet of 2021.
The Flexitarian Diet:
The Flexitarian diet (otherwise known as the semi-vegetarian diet) balances the benefits of a vegetarian diet with additional meat consumption for the meat lover. Obviously this diet does not include as much meat consumption as the typical American diet, but it does not eschew meat and animal products entirely. The flexitarian diet is a great way to burn calories in a balanced manner, and places greater emphasis on plant based eating, which is vital for weight loss and overall health.
The Flexitarian diet reduces, but doesn’t eliminate meat from your diet. Multiple publications and studies site diets with higher plant based food intake and lower meat intake are associated with weight loss and other health benefits. If you are looking for a diet to help you lose weight, lower your blood pressure, and lower your risk of type 2 diabetes, the flexitarian diet might be for you. The fact that you don’t need to give up meat is a major positive for many people.
Previously known as the Weight Watchers diet plan, the WW diet now focuses on more than just losing weight. Many diets can help you lose weight, such as the Keto and Atkins diets, both incredible diets for weight loss, but diets than can have side effects and actually harm one’s health if not undertaken properly. The WW diet, which is done through the Weight Watchers website, is no longer purely focused on weight loss. The WW and WW+ diets are now all about helping practitioners achieve a balanced diet that they can stick with for the long term, a diet that offers weight loss and general health benefit. After all, losing weight in an unhealthy manner can be as problematic as being overweight.
WW does have a few caveats that potential dieters should consider. While the WW system is efficient and has proven successful for many dieters, the actual diet plans can vary person to person, and you may not see the same results as friends and family who are dieting at different levels (represented by colors; Green, Blue, and Purple). Some foods may be classified as “ZeroPoint foods” at different levels. For instance, Bananas and Eggs are both ZeroPoint foods at Purple. The ZeroPoint label can be misleading and lead dieters to overeat these foods which have 70-100 calories and will add up with overeating. If you maintain portion control and discipline, then the WW diet could be the perfect diet for you.
Other diets to consider:
The following options are diets that may work for some people, but are not for everyone, or may not be feasible for everyone. While these diets can help people achieve their weight loss goals.
More of a lifestyle than a diet, vegetarian eating means you follow a purely plant based diet (with some allowances for dairy products). When you plan on adopting a vegetarian diet, you usually only adopt the diet for a few weeks at a time. This style of dieting does not generally lead to long term benefits, only short term weight loss in most cases. However, there are numerous health benefits to adopting a long term vegetarian lifestyle, although that requires commitment.
Intermittent fasting is less of a diet, and more of a lifestyle or scheduling change. Your diet itself does not change when you start intermittent fasting, instead the times of day that you eat change. Most intermittent fasting plans follow a two block timeframe. You are allowed to eat for a portion of the day, and for the remainder of the day you do not eat. A typical fasting period might be 10/14. You are allowed to eat during a 10 hour period (8 AM to 6 PM) and for the remainder of the day you do not eat. With intermittent fasting it is important to make sure you aren’t overeating during your eating hours.
The Keto diet is essentially the exact opposite of the vegetarian or flexitarian diet. The core principles of the Keto diet is to put your body into ketosis, which essentially causes the body to consume fat stores, rather than storing excess fats. This diet cuts out almost all carbohydrates and sugars, meaning you eat very little or no fruits and vegetables. While there are many people who swear by the Keto diet for weight loss, without proper medical advice, the keto diet can be harmful to one’s health and is not usually considered a long term diet option.