When you want to lose weight, a diet plan can help. But many diets aren’t sustainable, and they can create feelings of deprivation.
Check out these plans that won’t sabotage your health. They include a balance of fruits and veggies, grains, lean protein and nuts, and are low in sugar, salt and saturated fats.
The Ornish Diet
The Ornish diet is based on the theory that a plant-based diet coupled with moderate exercise can reverse heart disease. It does not require calorie counting or eating on specific schedules. Instead, it encourages healthy lifestyle behaviors such as regular exercise, stress management techniques, and spending time with loved ones. It also discourages fatty meats, processed foods, sugar and trans fats.
This plan has been proven to slow or even reverse the progression of heart disease, type 2 diabetes and hypercholesterolemia in several randomized controlled trials. However, the restrictive nature of the diet can be challenging for some. It eliminates most animal proteins and restricts fat intake to 10% of calories. This can lead to a loss of taste and texture as well as deficiencies in calcium, vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids.
The Whole Foods Diet
The whole foods diet is a healthy eating plan that emphasizes unprocessed food. This way of eating is easy to follow and has many health benefits. You can start by making small changes in your meals to eat cleaner. For example, try replacing soda with seltzer that has no added sugar. You can also use canned beans (no salt added), brown rice, and fresh or frozen vegetables in your cooking.
Avoid any foods with added sugars, salt, artificial flavors and colors, and processed oils. Instead, eat more fruits and vegetables, whole grains, fish, olive oil, nuts, and seeds. This way of eating can improve your health and help you lose weight. It is also sustainable and suitable for most people, although you may want to consult a doctor if you have a medical condition.
The Sirtuin Diet
Sirtuins are a group of proteins that regulate cellular activity. According to the creators of this diet, foods that activate sirtuins can promote weight loss and help prevent aging. The diet is based on a high-protein diet that includes leafy greens, berries, coffee, tea and spices.
The diet has gained popularity after singer Adele credited it with her recent weight loss and improved health. However, there is not much scientific evidence supporting this diet’s effectiveness.
The diet is also extremely restrictive with a daily allowance of just 1,000 calories from three green juices and one meal. This can cause a number of side effects, including slowed metabolism and fatigue. Therefore, it is not sustainable for most people. Adding sirtuin-activating foods to your diet is a more effective approach.
The Body Reset Diet
This weight loss plan, based on the popular Body Reset book by celebrity trainer Harley Pasternak, is divided into three phases. The first five-day jump start consists solely of smoothies and two low-calorie snacks, and is designed to kickstart a sluggish metabolism and help individuals shed pounds quickly.
Once this initial phase ends, the diet shifts to one nutrient-dense, low-calorie meal per day (such as a scramble, salad or sandwich) and two snacks. In addition, participants should engage in five daily 10-minute at-home strength training sessions and aim for seven hours of sleep each night.
While the Body Reset Diet is fairly effective for those who want to lose a few pounds quickly, it’s also restrictive and time-consuming. Moreover, it’s not a good idea to follow the Body Reset Diet for longer than 30 days.
The CICO Diet
The CICO diet promotes weight loss by focusing on the amount of calories you consume. However, calorie reduction alone doesn’t promote healthy weight loss and can lead to nutrient deficiencies in certain individuals. Proteins, for example, reduce ghrelin levels and promote satiety while fatty foods can increase ghrelin. 
The primary drawback of this diet is that it focuses solely on creating a calorie deficit and doesn’t provide any stipulations for food quality or macronutrient ratios. This may be problematic for those with eating disorders, as it can encourage unhealthy eating habits.
In addition, the lack of protein intake can result in muscle loss rather than fat loss. To avoid this, make sure you’re getting 0.8 to 1.2 grams of protein per pound of body weight.