|Critically evaluate any three popular fat loss programs. How do they stack up against each other relative to their nutritional profile? Their ability to support intense training? Their ability to provide lasting results?|
Fat Loss Programs
High levels of body fat are detrimental to the health of individuals as they are associated with various chronic disorders including diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, hypertension, and obesity. Diet control forms the primary approach through which fat loss can be effected. Nevertheless, it is important for any fat loss program to be cognizant of the other nutrient needs of the body in order to avert any chances of deficiencies.
There are various programs that could be adopted for fat loss including the DASH diet, ADA diet, and the vegetarian diet. It is important to note that the intake of energy is a key determinant of the fat levels in the body as the excess calories are converted into fat and stored in the body. The ADA diet, developed by the American Diabetes Association promotes fat loss by striking a balance between the intake and expenditure of energy. This diet advocates for an increase in physical activity and a decrease in the intake of calories (Ajala, English and Pinkney). As such, it can be adopted by an individual engaging in intense training as it will allow for a reduced intake of calories as compared to the energy consumed during the training, thus facilitating fat loss.
Another important program is the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet, which was originally established to promote management of hypertension. The diet is rich in vegetables, fruits, and low fat dairy products including milk. The diet also advocates for the increased intake of isoflavone, phytoestrogen, and fiber, thus promoting weight loss, glycemic control, and insulin sensitivity (Azadbakht, Fard and Karimi). This is important in ensuring proper breakdown of glucose and reduction of fat accumulation in the body while enhancing muscle build up during intensive training. Lastly, the vegetarian diet emphasizes on an increased intake of fibers and hence a reduced intake of fats, especially saturated fats (Tonstad, Butler and Yan). The vegetarian diet is important during intensive training as it reduces energy intake and promotes body fat breakdown.
It is important to note that the ADA, DASH, and
vegetarian diets all reduced the intake of energy in the form of carbohydrates
and fats. This is to avert accumulation of excess fats in the body. They also
emphasize on the intake of fibers as they promote a feeling of satiety and
hence reduce the intake of energy. When energy intake is reduced, the body breaks
down stored energy in the form of glycogen to supply its energy needs. Once the
glycogen has been depleted, the body breaks down stored fat to supply its
needs, which leads to fat loss.
Ajala, Olubukola, Patrick English and Jonathan Pinkney. “Systematic review and meta-analysis of different dietary approaches to the management of type 2 diabetes.” American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 97.3 (2013): 505-516.
Azadbakht, Leila, et al. “Effects of the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) Eating Plan on Cardiovascular Risks Among Type 2 Diabetic Patients.” https://care.diabetesjournals.org/content/34/1 34.1 (2011): 55-57.
Tonstad, Serena, et al. “Type of Vegetarian Diet, Body Weight, and Prevalence of Type 2 Diabetes.” Diabetes Care 32.5 (2009): 791–796.