Where’s the sense in a ‘Sensa’ diet?

There are fad diets, and then there are ridiculous diet schemes.

Although it’s apparently been around for about a year, I only recently saw this ad for a diet product called Sensa. It appeals to this country’s ‘quick-fix’ mentality where just sprinkling your food with sensathis product will magically help you shed pounds.

How has a condiment suddenly become the fix-all for a weight problem?

While yes, some companies try to sell the idea that spices and flavorings may suffice a person, it’s not going to make up for a poor nutritional diet, and insufficient amount of exercise.

It saddens me that the American populace, especially women, fall victim to these ‘get thin quick’ schemes, and then feel horrible about themselves when these diets don’t work.

Here’s a dirty little secret that no one tells you: Diets don’t work. Period. And no woman is going to look like this girl in the ad by using a diet product. Just sayin’.

Some diets high in protein or designed as diuretics can help you lose pounds, sure, but misleadingly so. It’s water weight, not fat. That’s why one seems to easily “pack on the pounds” right after getting off of the diet. That’s also another reason why watching the numbers on your scale is not the way to lose weight, but rather watching your own waistline. Girls, you know what I’m talking about: How cool do we find it when our pants start to feel loose on us again? The scale is not a dependable tool to assess weight loss due to those constant fluctuations.

Or diets work while women are on them, but one cannot live in a constant state of deprivation forever. Once a woman has lost x amount of pounds and gets off her diet, their normal lifestyle shows up on their waistline again.

A diet is not a reason to lose pounds. It’s a lifestyle. Let’s take a look at the word itself. The primary definition for “diet” is: The kinds of food that a person, animal, or community habitually eats. That’s it. To ‘go on a diet’ simply means to adopt a new eating lifestyle.

But deprivation and looking at “a diet” as something to punish yourself with for being overweight is never the answer to feeling good about yourself and your body.

So to those women out there frustrated with diets and their yo-yo weight issues – don’t just “go on a diet,” but rather find a way to change your current diet/eating lifestyle. A pill or a “sprinkle on” diet is not a healthy alternative. Don’t look for products that tote “weight loss” as its endgame. Look for foods and products that tote health and wellness. That’s the path to recovery.

Hunger is not our enemy. But the foods we eat could be a Trojan horse.

My advice? Get a gym membership. Hire a trainer that will keep you accountable at the gym. Talk to the staff nutritionist. Eat more whole foods (stand-alone foods like fruits and veggies that don’t come in a box or can). It may not happen tomorrow, next week, or even in a month. But dedication to a habit like exercising and buying only the right things for your fridge and cupboards will show up, in both how you look – and how you feel.

Your plate: Budgeting for cost, or for convenience?

Think it’s cheaper to pick up a pre-packaged pizza than browse your supermarket’s produce aisle? Recent studies are saying, “Absolutely.”

According to an article written on Food Navigator-USA by Elaine Watson last week, studies released by searchers in the U.S. and the UK have concluded that more nutrient-dense food (meaning foods better for you with more beneficial nutrients for the body) do cost more than your average bag of chips and hot dog.

In a recent paper, ‘Nutrient Intakes Linked to Better Health Outcomes Are Associated with Higher Diet Costs in the US’, authored by several researchers including Adam Drenowski, the director of the Center for Public Health Nutrition at the University of Washington, Seattle, one equation was adamantly upheld:

Diet + Nutritional Food = Higher Costs

Drewnowski, according to Watson, has “urged policy makers to take a ‘reality check’ after repeatedly highlighting the disparity between ‘aspirational’ diets and hard reality based on actual eating patterns identified from federal nutrient composition and dietary intake databases.” People don’t eat unhealthy because they want to. It’s just the most affordable, the study says.

But that’s probably just referring to supermarket browsers. How does eating out, and fast food fit into the equation? The study doesn’t exactly address that.

So what happens when we compare a healthy, home-cooked meal to eating fast food? A whole ‘nother ball came, according to http://www.healthyfamilyfun.org.

 Well – that’s a little sobering. So, if these numbers are right, what’s the problem? Convenience. As a friend of mine recently said, “American people are being killed by convenience.”

People don’t make time to cook anymore, and so they depend on the fast food, processed foods, and junk food to fill their plates. If people realized the money they’d save, I think it might start turning some heads. For now – it will remain an eternal debate among researchers. Try googling “what is cheaper fast food or healthy food.” The results I got was one link sending you to a page that said yes, the next one no. Next one yes. No. Yes. No.

I don’t know. I think the numbers above speak for themselves. Don’t you?