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Who has not tried one? Contrary to popular ideas about diets, many people become unhealthy and even gain weight after dieting. Several long-term studies have shown that individuals who adopt a weight-loss diet eventually gain more weight than individuals who simply eat carefully. Why is this so?

Many people think of dieting as a practice that requires a tremendous amount of will-power that they would not want to impose on themselves under normal circumstances, such that dieting is thought to be temporary, because few people want to exercise tremendous will-power all of the time. Since dieting is often perceived as abnormal and somewhat isolating from "normal" people and behaviors, people often decide to diet for only a short time until they get results, and then resort to their normal eating habits. Some people follow diets without paying attention to the diet’s details, such that simple and basic underlying principles are often forgotten. The century old comparison of calories in versus calories out is still important, although there are other factors to consider in this equation. Weight lost once is not weight lost forever, because lost weight can be quickly regained again if attention is not paid to dieting principles. To maintain a reduced weight, a person needs to consistently eat fewer calories than before because the person has less body weight that can burn calories.

Managing calories for a diet is similar to managing finances for a budget. The first advice that financial advisers often provide is to start saving money, which can be equated to the advice to start eating fewer calories. Following such advice is essential, but it is not enough. Just as inflation, unexpected tragedies, and various life events can frustrate efforts at saving money, eating fewer calories does not always result in losing weight. Several individual biochemical and hormonal factors affect a person’s metabolism, which may increase their difficulty in losing weight. Just like following some basic investment strategies can provide better financial results, following some basic dieting strategies can provide better weight-loss results, regardless of the type of diet. These basic dieting strategies include

  1. eating more fiber,

  2. avoiding foods such as sugar and highly processed foods,

  3. staying hydrated so that thirst is not confused with hunger,

  4. preventing insulin resistance by avoiding environmental and dietary toxins,

  5. and taking a break from food to enable fat-burning to begin. Taking a break from food can be achieved through time restricted eating, intermittent fasting, or simply not eating until true hunger occurs, instead of eating many times each day based upon the clock, habits, boredom, or social simulators.

Just as successful financial investors diversify their investment portfolios, successful weight managers incorporate a healthy diet, adequate exercise, and restful sleep in their fitness portfolio. Successful financial investors consistently follow proven financial principles for long-term benefits, instead of following these principles only for short time periods. Similarly, successful weight managers maintain healthy habits for life-long transformations, instead of adopting healthy habits only for a short time. Therefore, if you want to look and feel great, invest in achieving fitness, instead on focusing only on losing weight.

At Nutrigen Medicine, we do not prescribe a diet. Instead, based upon your unique biochemistry, nutritional needs, cellular health, and genomics, we recommend individualized lifelong strategies for adopting a D.I.E.T., which is a Discipline-based Initiative for Effective Transformation.