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Dieting changes your typical daily routine by altering your workout, what you eat and drink, and how you eat. When it comes to crash diets, you give your body very few calories in order to get faster weight loss results. Yes, you lose weight faster. However, you are not giving your body enough nutrients, leading to an unhealthy result that could have long-term negative effects.

We talked to our panel of medical experts about the eating habits they recommend to ditch your crash diet and embrace a healthier lifestyle. For more, check out The #1 Unhealthiest Diet You Should Never Try, According To A Dietitian.


Your state of mind plays an important role in the diet because sometimes you feel like you have to trick your mind into eating better. That’s why it’s important to take a step back, breathe deeply, stay positive, and think about what foods you can add to your diet.

“Very often when dieting, we focus on deprivation,” says Lisa YoungPhD, RDN, and author, Finally full, finally thin & The teller plan. “Instead, I suggest people focus on adding healthy, nutrient-dense foods without too many calories — fruits, vegetables, beans, fish.”

Woman writing in food diary with egg roasted carrot coffee on table

“If you’re not mentally drained from crash diet failure, I recommend monitoring your food intake in another way,” says Molly HembreeMS, RD, LD. “Rather than tracking every serving, calorie, or macronutrient, have a notebook (paper or digital) where you simply write down the names of the foods you eat throughout the day and the times you eat them.”

When you write these things down, you will be able to see that you enjoy healthy foods without judgment, which can be encouraging. You might also start noticing patterns in your food choices. For example, different times of the day or different days of the week can tell you what you experienced at that specific time. Then you can look back and see what you want to change for the next day or week.

“This method of always focusing on healthy eating can help you stay in control, but not repeat the cycle of failure,” says Hembree.

Portion control for dieting

Portion control allows you to continue eating your favorite foods throughout the day, but in moderation. This helps reduce the stress of avoiding unhealthy foods, but also keeps you from eating them all at once, especially if you’ve been cutting them out for so long.

“And rather than trying to count calories, choose healthy portions,” adds Young. “You can enjoy your favorite starch like rice and pasta, but be careful how much you put on your plate. Enjoy the dessert but share it with your dining companion.”

Man eating a bowl of fruit

“Most Americans are lacking in fruits and vegetables (ok maybe besides corn and potatoes!),” says Hembree. “Ignore all other weight loss methods and only change the number of fruits and vegetables you eat.”

Hembree suggests trying to have one more vegetable a day first. Then, a few days later, add another serving of fruit daily. Do this every day for a few weeks, then see if you can add another serving of fruit and vegetable.

“Fruits and vegetables are high in water and fiber, and low in calories (apart from avocados) to keep you full and help you lose weight naturally,” says Hembree. “Soon you’ll reach your nutritional goals of about three servings of fruits and vegetables a day!” »

trim correctly

“A dieter’s nightmare is staring at a half-empty plate,” says Young. This, in addition to trying to fit your food on smaller plates, doesn’t actually work.

According to a study carried out by Ben Gurion University of the Negev, tricking the brain into eating less by serving food on a smaller plate doesn’t necessarily work. Instead, when people are deprived of food, they are more likely to accurately identify the size of a serving, regardless of how it is served.

Young’s secret? Make half the plate full of fruits and vegetables.

“This tip helps you feel satisfied rather than deprived,” says Young.

Kayla Garritano

Kayla Garritano is a staff writer for Eat This, Not That! She graduated from Hofstra University, where she majored in Journalism and earned a double minor in Marketing and Creative Writing. Read more