The new 2010 diet

Every year sees a range of new diets on the market, so we thought it would be fun to look ahead a little and try to guess what new diets and weight loss trends we might see as 2010 unfolds. Here are our predictions for the year ahead:

An end to fad diets?

One trend that has developed in 2009 is a return to basics. Whether it is the result of the financial downturn, or because people are becoming more aware of their health, it has been noticeable that more and more people are looking to common sense basics as a way to lose weight - eating less, adopting healthy habits, exercising and sleeping more.

Certainly the extreme diets are becoming less popular - for example, any that expect people to survive on 800 calories a day or less - and while it may be overoptimistic to expect fad diets to disappear, they do seem to be coming a less popular option for slimmers. Expect this to continue through 2010.

Back-to-basics food:

Again, with the current state of the economy perhaps it is natural to return to basic ingredients. However, for dieters it means moving away from convenience foods - which, not coincidentally, are frequently associated with weight gain - and cooking from scratch. It means figuring out the essentials you need for healthy eating and stocking your pantry accordingly.

More Stevia:

After years of wrangling, the December 2008 FDA approval of plant extract Stevia in the USA is likely to see more and more pressure on the UK and the EU to license it. Currently it is legal to buy it in the UK, but not to sell it!

The controversy over Stevia comes from an obscure study conducted 40 years ago that suggested that it may reduce male fertility. However, that is should be banned because of minor side effects seems ironical considering the storm that swirls around the other main artificial sweeteners such as aspartame. Expect to see more and more media coverage of Stevia in the coming year.

Go Nuts!

Nuts and weight loss? That's right. For years nuts have been seen as the scourge of the dieter - they are loaded with fat, and fat is bad, right? And if you're on a low carb diet like Atkins, they have too much carbohydrate. So all in all, nuts are a disaster for dieters, correct?

In fact, a study published in 2006 reported that adding nuts to the diet of dieters resulted in a more lasting and greater magnitude of weight loss. In fact, eaten in moderation, they are an excellent source of protein, dietary fiber, and minerals including magnesium and copper. They also contain lots of monounsaturated fats, and are thus good for the heart.

Still not convinced? In 2003 the American FDA, the most conservative of organizations, stated that: "Scientific evidence suggests but does not prove that eating 1.5 ounces per day of most nuts, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol, may reduce the risk of heart disease." This is the first time the FDA has ever published a health claim for a food.

2010 promises to be an interesting year. Let's hope the new trends and ideas can help you to lose weight!

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