Weight loss expert agrees with ditching fad diets
Sally Symonds supports the Dietitians Association of Australia in encouraging Australians to ditch fad diets.
According to Australia’s latest National Nutrition Survey, more than 2.3 million Australians (13%) aged 15 years and older say they are on a diet to lose weight or to improve their health. But the Dietitians Association of Australia (DAA) is encouraging Australians to ditch fad diets this year, and focus on achieving healthy eating habits and a healthy weight by making changes they can keep up long term.
I absolutely agree, and have advised the same for years,” says Sally. “[fad] Diets absolutely do not work. And I am proof of this. I broke every rule in the book when I lost half my body weight and I have kept it off for over 10 years.
“The majority of people who lose weight on diets put it back on....plus more!”
Large US study, the National Weight Control Registry, which began in 1994, has been tracking the success of more than 10,000 people who have lost at least 13kg and kept it off for more than five years. According to Professor Clare Collins, spokesperson for the DAA, the purpose of the study is to provide valuable insights into the changes that people make to shift kilos and keep them off.
Sally is very familiar with the registry as she is a member of it herself.
“It contains the largest collection of data in the world about people who have lost weight and kept it off. While there are some commonalities, there is no ‘magic bullet’ or ‘one size fits all’ answer to successful, sustainable weight loss,” advises Sally.
“The only key seems to be that you need to keep exploring all of your options until you find enough healthy living strategies to easily integrate into your life every day.”
But this doesn’t seem to be good enough or quick enough for most people who are looking for a magic pill, program or product to help them to lose weight or fight obesity, falling for clever marketing strategies that have them believing the next fad will be the one that actually works.
“People have been conned into buying over complex weight loss plans when they already have everything they need already to lose weight. They think they are getting value for money but what they are getting is a system that is far too complex for what is required and for normal people whose lives don’t revolve around health and fitness,” says Sally. “People are buying the overcomplication of the simple.”
“I always say that trying to change the habits of a lifetime in 12 weeks is like trying to smell the colour 9.”
“It’s time to empower ourselves with gradual changes that are sustainable for life,” Sally suggest, “changes that empower us and we actually enjoy doing.”
If you find it too difficult to lose weight, many experts suggest the most important thing is to simply work at not gaining any more weight by not snacking as much and reducing meal portions just enough.
20 January 2015.