Losing weight in the long term is difficult – which is why diets are still booming. But can they keep their promise of an easier life and more time to play Bizzo Casino?
Diet: No thanks! Diet has become a real unword, it is unsexy, people associate it with absurd restrictions, unhealthy abandonment and lack of enjoyment. But that doesn’t mean that the self-imposed mortification that is part of the vast majority of diets has disappeared. But instead of dieting, people are now changing their diets, cutting out sugar and processed foods, or going on “detox.” So the approach to nutrition has definitely changed, and the eating concepts have probably also become healthier. But there is still a lot of ignorance when it comes to the individual diets.
Around 54 percent of Austrians have already dieted in the past, according to a 2018 analysis by Spektra Marktforschung, and for 30 percent it was less than a year ago. The methods range from eating smaller portions to skipping meals, abstaining from fat or carbohydrates to therapeutic fasting. However, long-term success has failed to materialize for many. On the one hand, this is due to unrealistic ideas about how much weight loss is possible in what time. On the other hand also current nourishing models are connected with many restrictions. Almost all fail to keep up these defaults on a long-term basis and/or to integrate them into the everyday life.
A Diät can be an initial spark for a long-term nourishing conversion. For some, it’s an initial success that can be built upon afterwards.” However, she clearly warns against hopping from one diet to the next: “If you don’t have a nutritional concept that also works in everyday life, and for life, then this may result in an unhealthy yo-yo effect with permanent weight loss and gain.”
In addition, the basic knowledge of what constitutes healthy nutrition has not really improved. Social media and self-proclaimed nutrition gurus on the net increase the lack of knowledge rather than bringing enlightenment to the plate. “Many of these recommendations are not based on scientific findings. It’s really hard to keep track of what’s healthy and what’s not,” says Jürgen König, professor of nutritional sciences at the University of Vienna. Reason enough therefore, common nourishing concepts once more exactly under the magnifying glass to take. Do they really help people lose weight, especially in the long term? Which of them have a health benefit? And which ones are better left alone?
The idea of interval fasting seems promising because you don’t have to give up anything. Eat what I want, but not when I want, is how many interpret it. In the concept, you eat only within a certain period of time, which is followed by a longer fasting period completely without calorie intake. How long eating and fasting phases last, one can adapt thereby to the own needs. Most follow the principle 16:8, thus 16 hours fast, eight hours consume. Some also do without food completely every other day or follow the 5:2 principle, i.e. five days of normal eating, two days of fasting.
The idea behind this is to stimulate the process of autophagy. This is a kind of the body’s own cell recycling program (DER STANDARD reported here), which is only started by the long food break, and which is supposed to protect against lifestyle diseases such as cancer or diabetes. And many have the hope that the limited time available for food intake will help them consume fewer calories.
But that only works if you don’t indiscriminately eat whatever you feel like during the eating phase. Nutritionist König explains: “To lose weight, you need an energy deficit, you have to eat fewer calories than your metabolism consumes. How one succeeds best in doing that is a very individual question.” Often, long breaks from eating have little effect on the total amount of calories you eat; many simply eat all the more in the limited time. “But if I eat zero calories one day and 5,000 the next, I still ate too much over both days.”