Health Nutrition
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Whether you turn to dieting for health or moral reasons, there’s an endless selection of regiments to choose from. So which ones help you and which ones hurt you?

Dr. Marla Shapiro, a medical consultant at CTV, was able to dig into the details of a few of the most popular diets, including their benefits and consequences.

Vegetarianism

While vegetarianism offers many ways to get enough nutrients, some people on this diet still develop health issues from not eating enough of the right kinds of foods. For instance, many vegetarians will fill up on carbohydrates instead of finding other sources of protein like beans and tofu.

When you start cutting out major food groups, you need to make sure you’re getting nutrients in different ways. Otherwise, you’ll feel the effects of being nutrient deficient.

Flexitarianism

This is a newer diet that offers the opportunity to be a ‘selective’ eater. Instead of cutting out meat and dairy completely, flexitarians can just reduce the amount of meat and dairy they eat. This also resembles the Mediterranean diet, which has been proven over and over to have endless health benefits. However, since it offers no firm rules, it may be a little tougher to stick to.

flexitarian diet
CTV News

Keto diet

The ketogenic diet may be the key to losing weight fast. Yet, it certainly isn’t the right diet to be on for long-term weight loss. There’s no source of veggies, carbs or fruit–it’s barely sustainable. But athletes tend to use this diet to become leaner on a short-term basis. Verdict: use with caution.

keto
CTV News

Paleo diet (aka the caveman diet)

Once again, this diet is really only good for short-term weight loss. It excludes dairy and grains, meaning you’ll be completely deprived of two major food groups–and that’ll interfere with your health in the long run. Plus, cavemen probably weren’t very well-nourished to begin with, so we’re not sold on the idea of using them as dieting role models.

CTV News
CTV News

“If it doesn’t teach you how to eat properly with appropriate portion sizes, incorporating lifestyle and exercise, it becomes a vicious circle,” said Shapiro.

No matter what diet you choose to follow, just make sure you’re getting enough nutrients to help your body feel its best. Watch the video above to learn more about these diets.