When you are finished with the article, you will be directed to vote on one of the following choices:
- Weight Watchers
- HMR Diet
- The Biggest Loser
- Jenny Craig
- Raw Food Diet
- Other (leave comment with diet name)
For the impatient ones who need to vote now, without reading my awesome article:
I am 34, almost 35, and slightly overweight. The kicker for me is my genetic predisposition to high cholesterol and elevated liver enzymes. As a result, when I got my yearly blood work after months of unhealthy eating and neglecting to take my cholesterol medication, my cholesterol levels were high, my liver enzymes were elevated, and I got “the talk” from my doctor, as you might imagine.
The first time a doctor told me I needed to get a new diet, I simply told her I need to get a new doctor. Of course, I was joking. What is not funny, however, is the diet the doctors always want me to go on, which is one that is full of ultra lean meats and very low carbohydrates. A life without pizza, I say, is no life at all. What is even less funny, however, are the health problems that await me if I do not start listening to these fun-sponges.
To satisfy these doctor people, I have tried many “diets” that fit their requirements. Some of them do work quite nicely. Of course, they really work especially well when I am on a nice exercise routine. However, it seems that as soon as I get into the routine of eating healthy and exercising, something major changes in my life, which disrupts my routine and sends me spiraling back to poor health. Most recently I was in a great routine for about six months, until last September. I was lifting weights, doing cardio, and getting in some of my best shape in years. Then, we moved, school started back up, football practices began, and an enormously stressful school year commenced. Combined, this led to one of my most unhealthy periods since college. And so, with my most recent visit to the doctor, the time has come once again where I have to change my eating and exercise (or lack of exercise) habits.
The good news is, I feel I have a real shot to get back into a new routine with my summer break quickly approaching. The first step, however, is to adopt a diet plan that will work with my busy life, will not bore the hell out of me, will not drain my savings account, and will, of course, be effective. After poking around a little bit on the Internet, I discovered the “top weight loss diets”, according to U.S. News. Below I have provided my thoughts on how I feel about introducing them into my life, instead of simply summarizing them. If you want to read more about them, visit the link (U.S. News).
1) Weight Watchers – I have to count points? Bummer. Regardless, I have heard first hand from people who have been successful with Weight Watchers that this diet is really nice because in theory, you do not have to deny yourself of any of your favorite foods (you do, obviously, have to seriously watch the portions of them though).
2) HMR Diet – For those of you who do not know (like I did not), this stands for Health Management Resource Diet. The idea of replacing meals with other foods, such as nutrition bars, shakes, etc., and increasing my fruit and vegetable intake seems on paper easy enough to me. Then, I realize how much I have grown to dislike vegetables, how expensive fruit is, and how much I will miss my ham and cheese sandwiches for lunch.
3) Biggest Loser Diet – This is another diet that seems like it will break the proverbial bank with its necessary increase of more expensive foods. That said, this seems to be the best option for me. I did briefly try this one time, however, and found myself unwilling to follow the recipes, and moved on from it fairly quickly. I like to cook creatively, and this seemed to cramp my style a little. Still, I only tried it briefly, so maybe I am missing something.
4) Jenny Craig – First, I hate the idea of pre-packaged meals. It just does not seem like food to me. Second, and I know this is poor thinking on my part, it seems too feminine for me; it seems marketed to women. Throw your stones at me if you think I am being sexist here, but I am just being honest.
5) Raw Foods Diet – One problem I have with this is the name. In no way does raw food imply good taste. Why on earth would I want to eat only raw food? While practical, I suppose, this seems absurd to me. Sure, I eat raw foods from time to time, but eating all raw foods all of the time seems inhumane to me. While I know that this type of eating is supposed to be supremely healthy, and not just for weight loss reasons, I don’t care. I like to eat food that is sufficiently cooked from time to time, especially my smoked meats. So, no thanks, I think I’ll take the health problems over this one.
Once again, those are the top five diets as recommended by a fairly comprehensive meta-analysis of popular diets, according to experts at U.S. News. I realize that there are many other popular weight loss diets on the market. I personally have found success in the past with the Zone diet because it allowed me much flexibility and never left me hungry. Maybe you have found success with one of these, or one not mentioned? If so, please let me know.
Please vote on this poll and leave comments. My cholesterol, my liver, and my well-being are counting on you all for the best suggestions.
Again, for added fun, once I feel there have been a sufficient amount of votes, I will embrace your collective suggestion, and attempt the winning diet. For the love of God, though, please don’t make it Jenny Craig!