Dieting can be difficult if you’re following a weight-loss plan that has unrealistic expectations and strict, hard-to-follow rules. You’re more likely to see results and stick to a diet if you choose a flexible plan that encourages healthy eating habits and regular exercise. If you’re hoping to make 2015 your healthiest year yet, check out these six weight-loss plans, which will help you shed pounds, improve your health, and boost your metabolism. Keep reading to discover the diet of your dreams!
1. The Jillian Michaels Diet
Best known for her role as a trainer on The Biggest Loser, Jillian Michaels has created a diet that focuses on three important elements: diet, exercise, and behavioral modifications. This online weight-loss plan is based on one simple premise — you need to eat fewer calories than you burn in order to lose weight, according to Every Diet. The Jillian Michaels Diet also believes that no two plans should be the same. When you sign up for this weight-loss plan, you’ll take a quiz and receive a diet and exercise plan based on the answers you give.
Every Diet notes that the program is adjusted to your specific body shape, metabolic profile, fitness level, personal goals, and health conditions. In addition, Diet Plans For Women says this weight-loss plan doesn’t just tell you what foods to eat, it also explains why you should eat them. For example, your personalized diet plan will explain which foods boost your metabolism and burn fat, the time of day you should eat certain things, and how to trigger the hormones that inform your brain you’re full. When you buy a membership to Jillian Michaels’ website, which costs $4 a week, you’ll have access to an assortment of personalized meal plans, exercise recommendations, and healthy-eating lessons.
2. The 3-1-2-1 Diet
Dolvett Quince, another trainer on NBC’s The Biggest Loser, is the mastermind behind the book The 3-1-2-1 Diet, a 21-day program that helps dieters lose up to 10 pounds. Harper’s Bazaar explains that on Quince’s plan, you’ll eat clean for three days, have one cheat day, eat healthy for another two days, have another cheat day, and then cycle back to three days of clean eating. According to Diet Spotlight, dieters can’t exceed 1,400 calories on clean-eating days but are allowed to indulge in foods such as bacon, pancakes, and alcohol on cheat days.
Diet Spotlight adds that in order to lose up to 10 pounds and keep it off, dieters must also exercise regularly. By incorporating both low- and high-calorie days, dieters won’t feel deprived and will experience a nice metabolism boost, Harper’s Bazaar reports. “We should all have days or meals that are special occasions and guilt-free,” Lisa Sasson, an associate professor of nutrition and food studies at New York University, told Harper’s Bazaar. “It teaches us that there’s no such thing as forbidden foods, and eating foods we love is all part of a healthy lifestyle.”
3. The DASH Diet
The DASH diet, which stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension, focuses on portion control and eating a wide variety of nutritious foods. The Mayo Clinic explains that the DASH diet emphasizes eating fruits, vegetables, and low-fat dairy products, as well as moderate amounts of whole grains, fish, poultry, and nuts. The diet is designed to help lower your blood pressure and may help prevent osteoporosis, cancer, heart disease, stroke, and diabetes.
In addition, the Mayo Clinic notes that it can help you shed unwanted pounds by guiding you toward healthy meals and snacks. In a study that evaluated 35 diets, U.S. News and World Report ranked the DASH Diet as the best diet overall. The panel of experts who examined the plan gave it high marks for its safety, ability to prevent or control diabetes, nutritional completeness, and its role in supporting heart health.
4. The Girlfriends Diet
Brought to you by the editors of Good Housekeeping, The Girlfriends Diet is a book that details a simple and straightforward healthy eating and exercise plan that you do with your friends. Good Housekeeping writes that you’re more likely to lose weight and keep it off when you’ve got a friend or two holding you accountable. Plus, going to the gym with a pal is always more fun than going by yourself!
Harper’s Bazaar notes that the four-week meal plan recommends eating between 1,400 to 1,600 calories each day and focuses on Mediterranean food, such as Greek chicken and grilled swordfish. If you’re looking for a diet that will help you make long-term changes to your eating and exercise habits, this is the one for you! No food groups are excluded from this weight-loss plan, meaning you’ll eat plenty of fruits and veggies, some meat, and can even indulge in the occasional cocktail or dessert.
5. TLC Diet
Therapeutic Lifestyle Changes, referred to as the TLC Diet, is perfect for people who want to form long-term healthy-eating habits. Not only do you eat healthy on this plan, but you also exercise for 30 minutes each day and eliminate unhealthy lifestyle habits such as smoking. Designed to help lower your cholesterol, the diet reduces the amount of unhealthy saturated fats you eat by having you replace them with low-fat foods and unsaturated fats, such as olive, canola, or peanut oil, according to WebMD.
While many following this diet do it to lower their bad cholesterol, Consumers Compare notes that you can also lose weight if you’re more restrictive with your calories. TLC Diets says this simple, straightforward, and easy-to-follow plan also shows you what to look for on food labels, so you can make sure you’re buying the healthiest, most nutritionally sound items. U.S. News & World Report notes that this diet has no major weaknesses and describes it as a “very healthful, complete, safe diet.”
6. The New Nordic Diet
Similar to the Mediterranean Diet in many ways, the New Nordic Diet focuses on eating healthy foods that are locally grown, organic, and in season, Men’s Health states. This diet aims to be an attainable, manageable weight-loss plan and is built around 15 food groups, including fruit and vegetables, potatoes, fresh herbs, plants, mushrooms, nuts, whole grains, wild meat, fish, shellfish, and seaweed. This main difference between this plan and the Mediterranean Diet is that it allows for even more flexibility.
For example, Men’s Health explains that unlike the Mediterranean Diet, you can use canola oil in place of olive oil, and you’re allowed to use organic butter. The nutrient-dense foods that this diet recommends you eat will keep you feeling full for longer and ensures you never feel deprived, according to Women’s Health. In addition to helping you lose weight, The Daily Meal notes that this diet may prevent some chronic diseases and can help prevent strokes and heart attacks.