I know many of you are trying to lose weight for our Get Fit For 2010 challenge. It's not always easy to change eating habits, which is why for some, the structure of following a formal diet works well. The problem is that many diets are unhealthy, unsafe, and ultimately don't keep the weight off. If you are struggling to find a plan to help you, Health — along with a group of doctors, dietitians, and nutritionists — came up with a list of their picks for America's healthiest diets. The panel judged the pool of 60 diets by looking at their ability to give total body healthiness, real results, motivation, and reasonably achievable exercises.
- Volumetrics. The idea behind Volumetrics is to eat healthy but feel full. "Low-density foods like fruits and vegetables, as well as soups and stews, fill you up without overloading you with calories." This way you never feel like you're starving yourself. Volumetrics made the list because it’s “based on sound nutrition principles and overall healthy food choices.” We like it too because it's full of low-calorie and lower-fat food and lots of vegetables and fruits.
- The Best Life. I don't have to tell you who Bob Greene is, Oprah already did that. His diet is a complete makeover, "which offers a sane, healthy approach to overall lifestyle changes." It's full of recipes, attainable goals, and small steps that lead you to a bigger reward. The three components of the diet offer a "strategy that leads to slimming, nutritional eating, and increased physical activity."
- The Sonoma Diet. I've got big love for the Mediterranean diet, which is what the Sonoma Diet is based around: fruits, vegetables, whole grains, olive oil, fish, and nuts. The Sonoma Diet helps dieters quit processed foods for "active weight loss and maintenance." The Sonoma Diet is more about food and less about exercise, though: "This diet teaches you to eat slowly and savor your meals."
- The Step Diet. This diet wants you to get up and move — specifically, 10,000 steps each day. The book comes with a pedometer and gives dieters realistic ways to move more, like "parking farther away, taking the stairs." As far as food, the message is simple: "Cut food intake to 75 percent of what you currently eat."
- The EatingWell Diet. A newer diet, EatingWell looks at the science behind food and tries to change eating habits through behavioral changes like, "finding and facing eating triggers, eating and shopping mindfully, and cultivating regular, joyful exercise habits." It also encourages steady weight loss — about a pound a week.
To see what other diets made the list, read more.
Check out Health to see the five other diets that made the cut.