Nutritional Fads, are They Really Helpful

by : Joy Peace

Many perspectives to nutrition exists today. The subject is largely an emotional one.From strict vegetarians who support their eating habits with a fairly religious intensity to paranoid teens, constantly trying to look and feel like their favourite celebrities, the subject has gone from the mundane to the magnificent.What are the fact anyway and why should I care? First off, you should care, because more than half of America is overweight and even Europe is not far behind.Added to that there is more than a 50% chance of contracting diabetes, stroke, cholesteremia and a host of heart related complications if you do not care.

What are the common dieting fads and what should you watch out for about them? We'll take a look at these fads one by one and assess their suitability or otherwise for our health.

It's no longer news that teenagers are in the forefront of the craze for a slim physique. Quite a lot of teenagers, routinely skip meals, some even induce vomitting in order to curb overfeeding, Adults too are not left out, fasting is a regular routine for some, hoping to shed those pounds fast and freely. What are the merits of this approach? Quick weight loss, and something more. When weight reduction is prosecuted in this manner, fat is lost rapidly. One point needs to be noted. Fats in the body act as an emergency storage.Whenever our energy intake falls below our metabolic threshold, the body converts fats into energy. However, when we resume our normal eating patterns, the accumulation of fat is sometimes rapid that we often gain extra and become,seriously, more robust than we previously were.

Also, recent studies have shown very severe effects of skipping meals among teenagers. An irregular menstrual cycle, irregular heart rate, and anaemia have been known to plague lots of teens seeking to attain a celebrity physique.

Recently some folks have taken to eliminating certain food groups altogether from their diet. They reason that after all, the occurence of strokes, heart attacks, diabetes and other cardiovascular complications have been strongly linked to these food groups,so, why not do away with them altogether?

An offshoot of this schoool of thought is the current vegetarian movement. What should we know about a healthy,balanced and nutritious diet? Should we totally eliminate fats from our diets and maybe even carbohydrates as some strenously propose? Nutrition experts agree that a balanced, sensible diet should consist of at least more than 50% complex carbohydrates, less than 30% fats and the rest protein and other food groups. If we consistently violate this creed we open ourselves to several unpleasant health disorders including a weakened immune system, anaemia, amongst other ailments. You should know that so much energy is required by the body for normal living activities such as walking, talking, muscular movements, repair of cellular tissue and others. Vitamins and proteins do not contain sufficient energy to meet the body's energy demand and at any rate, they cannot readily release their embodied energy for use by the body. The only food groups that contain energy in sufficient amounts required by the body and can release them readily are fats and carbohydrates. If we consistently decide to bypass these food groups, Yes, we'll grow thin, but a very low metabolic rate and its attendant problems; a weakened immune system, low blood count, anaemia, lethargy and irritation become our lot.

The same thing applies for liquid diets, they tend to be high on protein and low on carbohydrates.You soon develop all the above named health complications, with their prolonged usage.

What then is the appropriate course of action? You've probably heard it several times. Eat smaller meals with low fat and the necessary amount of carbohydrates. Use a lot of vegetables and fruits. Eat regularly,stomach ulcers fatality rates are rising in proportions you really need to be frightened about. Above all exercise regularly and keep your mind fresh with the latest information on good nutrition and healthy living. A happy, healthy, long disease free life is possible, only know the rules and play by them.