Why do conventional diets fail?

Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)

Whether or not a diet plan can be called "conventional" is largely in the eyes of the beholder. There are several common reasons why diet strategies fail, including:

  • They're boring. If a diet severely limits the variety of foods you can eat, over time your palate can become bored. As a result, you'll start craving forbidden foods, which could lead you to overeat and gain weight.
  • They're too restrictive. Some diet plans simply include too little food. While that may lead to rapid weight loss, most people will not be able to tolerate a growling stomach. Many will respond by gorging themselves and gaining back any weight they may have lost.
  • They reset your metabolism. Another problem with very-low-calorie diets is that they can lower your metabolism, or the rate at which your body burns calories. That means your body needs fewer calories to operate, which makes it easier to gain weight. (Very-low-calorie diets should only be attempted with a doctor's guidance.)

Continue Learning about Dieting For Weight Loss

Dieting For Weight Loss

Dieting For Weight Loss

Losing weight quickly is OK as long as you do it safely, not through a crash diet. You can lose three or more pounds a week by burning more calories than you eat. If you burn an extra 500 calories per day through eating less and i...

ncreasing your physical activity, you can lose about one to two pounds of fat per week. Dietitians recommend a daily minimum of 1,200 calories per day (a 200-pound person might need 1,400 calories). Anything less makes you lose muscle as well as fat, which slows your metabolism. Instead, minimize your intake of starches, added sugars like high fructose corn syrup and animal fat from dairy and meats. Focus on eating fruits and vegetables, soy products, egg whites, skinless poultry breasts, shellfish and fish, nonfat dairy foods and meat that is 95 percent lean. Drink lots of water, don't skip meals, and eat only from a plate while seated at a table.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.