It’s just a fad … it too shall pass

The following is the first of regular guest blog posts that we hope to include here.  Many of you have requested more information on diets and healthy eating so we have enlisted the aid of dietitian Vijaya Botla of Alamo Nutrition Consultants.  I look forward to many more posts!

Now that January is behind us, how have you been doing with those New Year’s weight loss resolutions? Have you been resolved to barely eating or taking pills to help drop that weight? Well stop “detoxing” your body with that juice cleanse and put down the celery stick! The number one reason people get discouraged and often fail at dieting is that they think it’s too restrictive and absolutely, positively no fun with a little bit of doom and gloom added in; but it doesn’t have to be.

Weight loss is a multi-billion dollar business and often we want quick fixes to help us achieve our goals. If fad diets or pills or shots really worked (and by worked I mean that you were able to sustain that weight loss for more than a year) why are new ones constantly popping up? Want to see how this works?

What’s your favorite food…apple pie? Well, let’s make up the Apple Pie Diet. You can have a slice of pie for breakfast, another for lunch and then for dinner. Now on this diet you aren’t allowed anything else except the pie and 6-8 glasses of water a day. I can guarantee that you will lose weight! On average, a slice of double crust apple pie has 425 calories and 4 grams of protein. Now multiply that by 3 slices per day and you will be consuming 1275 calories per day (the average American consumes over 2000 calories). You will definitely see the pounds come off! But how long can you sustain this diet before you start having dreams of sneaking some grilled steak or spicy chili into the mix? Also, what about the lack of protein to maintain muscle and skin health? In a matter of days, or if you’re really committed maybe a couple weeks, you will most likely stop eating pie and think it just wasn’t for you. So you start back to eating the way you did and before you know it, you are back to the weight you were when you started; maybe even a little heavier! Then you decide that maybe you just need to try another more popular diet that has worked for such and such celebrity. Since they look great, it will definitely work for you too, right? Welcome to the world of yo-yo dieting.

Fad diets are just that…short-lived trends that come and go because they aren’t sustainable. Over the next few months, let’s explore what really does work and how you can achieve your weight loss goals the right way. Are you ready for Nutrition 2016?

For this month, let me leave you with this great tip that I have found helps so many people: when you feel like you’re hungry, don’t automatically grab something to eat. Try drinking a large glass of water first. Our mind sometimes has a hard time differentiating between hunger and thirst. We may just continue to be hungry even after having a snack or meal because what our body really needs is some fluids. After finishing that glass of water, wait at least 15-20 minutes before deciding to get a snack. If you still feel that gnaw for food, then go for it. You may be surprised at how often you were just thirsty and not really hungry! Til’ next time…

Vijaya Botla RDN, LD

Vijaya is the lead dietitian and president of Alamo Nutrition Consultants LLC, a private nutrition counseling practice located in San Antonio. If you would like to schedule an appointment to jump start your weight loss goals, ANC can help. For more information, call 210-971-0044 or visit their website at

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