Around 68% of men and 58% of women are reportedly living with obesity in the UK. Thus it comes as no surprise that two-thirds of the British public admit that they are on a diet ‘most of the time’ with these worrying figures with additional reports that state 48% of them have lost weight in the same year. As January approaches, weight loss and healthy eating are very common new year’s resolutions across the UK. According to The Telegraph, 33% of resolution makers want to lose weight, and 32% want to eat more healthily. With this in mind, MaxiMuscle investigates what the biggest diet trends could be in 2018.
Following the Bulking Trend
It is common for fitness enthusiasts to go through phases throughout the year, depending on their desired look. Terms such as cutting season, off season and bulking were recognized throughout the fitness industry. Bulking, in particular, is a diet that requires an intake of excess calories to provide your body with additional energy and protein to build muscle. When in bulk season, someone is purposely providing their body with a calorie surplus.
A bulking diet consists of the three main macronutrients of lean protein, carbohydrates and essential fats, yet they will be consumed to a much higher quantity than usual to ensure they consume enough calories. Protein shakes are often consumed before and/or after workouts too for additional calorie intake and a protein boost. They can also be taken as a snack or meal replacement in some cases.
In order to get the most out of the bulking technique, the key to keep count of your calorie intake. However, in an article by the Huffington Post, it was revealed that 33% of women don’t know how many calories they consume on a daily basis, whilst 42% of men said the same. Bulking requires commitment and careful calorie counting, alongside a strict workout routine.
The number of vegans living in the UK in 2016 increased by 360% when compared to the previous ten years, and results also found from 2017’s Veganuary campaign that the increase is likely to have continued in 2017, and will continue further into 2018. In January this year, over 60,000 people officially signed up to take part in Veganuary which showed a progressive 260% growth in figures from 2016. Whilst the campaign only lasts for the month of January each year, it aims to encourage people to alter their diets as a long-term lifestyle change and live by a predominantly plant-based diet.
The average vegan diet is said to be typically higher in fiber and vitamin C, whilst significantly lower in saturated fat when compared to a diet that containing meat. The health benefits are big motivators for those who want to adopt, or trial, a vegan diet during January. In 2017, of the official participants that signed up for Veganuary, 19,206 of them said they signed up for health reasons.
The Very Popular 5:2 Diet
Formally known as an intermittent fasting diet, consisting of splitting your diet between eating at certain times and then fasting during other times of the day. The 5:2 refers to five days of eating and two days of fasting. The NHS reports that some followers of the diet claim it can improve lifespan and brain function whilst protecting against particular health conditions such as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. However, scientific evidence about the effectiveness of the diet is limited — but the NHS reports that there is some evidence to suggest the diet may lower the risk of certain obesity-related cancers, such as breast cancer.
The 5:2 diet is regarded as being more achievable as you are only required to fast for just two days, rather than seven days a week. This way you could help reduce body fat and insulin resistance. However, be aware that fasting too much and skipping meals can cause dizziness and headaches.
The Ancient Paleo Diet
The Paleo diet claims it is a lifestyle that consists of a small portion of meat, with a lot of vegetables, fruits and some nuts. Often referred to as the caveman diet, the Paleo diet strictly consists of foods that can be hunted such as meat and seafood, as well as foods that can be gathered such as plant-based foods. Cereal grains and processed foods are strictly off the menu. This diet is more of a long-term eating plan that helps to lose weight and can reduce the risk of diabetes.
Becoming increasingly popular are free-from diets, including gluten-free diets and dairy-free diets. Many people live on a gluten-free diet for health reasons, because they suffer from a Coeliac disease. The disease affects 1 in 100 people in the UK and Europe but it is suggested that only 24% of people with the condition have been clinically diagnosed. There is also 65% of the UK public who have a reduced ability to digest lactose. But it is not just sufferers who live a free-from diet. In the first month of 2017 alone, 54% of households also bought ‘free-from’ products, too.
Free-From diets have been proven to help certain intolerances. A gluten-free diet has been shown to benefit sufferers of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) as well as Coeliac sufferers — and a dairy-free diet can prevent bloating, clear skin, improve digestion, and prevent oxidative stress, to name just a few benefits. Weight loss is also a possibility with a transition towards a dairy-free diet.
Temporary or Permanent?
For many people, they commit to a diet as a means to attempt to try and lose weight. Thus, it becomes difficult to maintain the weight loss once they reach that weight and it is very common that they often revert back to their old ways — it becomes a temporary fix, before they move on to a new diet trend, revert back to old habits or simply give up. However, the most effective and safest way to diet is to change your lifestyle for the better instead of yo-yo dieting. Find something that works, that you enjoy and stick with it to ensure you maintain a healthy balance.