With a new year comes new resolutions and if you’re looking to lose weight in 2020, look no further because the US News & World Report released its annual list of diets ranked from best to worst. Whether you want to cut out dairy or want to cut back on sugar, we have everything you need to know about the top five diets to follow in 2020 with expert tips.
1. Mediterranean Diet
The Mediterranean Diet ranked number one out of the 35 diets reviewed by US News & World Report. The diet gets its name from the food consumed in countries surrounding the Mediterranean Sea. It is composed of eating vegetables, fruits, herbs, nuts, beans, oil, and whole grains, with fish and seafood consumed a couple of times a week. While the diet doesn’t ban any food groups, it allows you to have dairy and poultry in moderation, while meat can be consumed on “special occasions.”
2. DASH Diet
The DASH Diet, promoted by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, stands for “Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension,” and is designed to stop high blood pressure. The diet was tied with the Mediterranean Diet as the number one best diet. Following the diet, you will consume fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, and low-fat dairy, all of which have nutrients including potassium, calcium, protein, and fiber, which work to lower blood pressure. On this diet, you’re encouraged to avoid high saturated fat foods including meats, full-fat dairy, sugary beverages, sweets, and some oils. While on the diet, you can only consume 2,300 milligrams of sodium a day, max, and according to US News & World Report, “followers will eventually lower to about 1,500 milligrams.”
3. The Flexitarian Diet
The Flexitarian Diet combines two words – “flexible and vegetarian.” The term was created by registered dietitian Dawn Jackson Blatner in her 2009 book, “The Flexitarian Diet: The Mostly Vegetarian Way to Lose Weight, Be Healthier, Prevent Disease and Add Years to Your Life.” Dawn’s belief on the diet is that you can be a vegetarian most of the time, but still indulge in meat if you get an urge. “By eating more plants and less meat, it’s suggested that adherents to the diet will not only lose weight but can improve their overall health, lowering their rate of heart disease, diabetes, and cancer, and live longer as a result,” US News & World Report reveals. The diet consists of adding five food groups to your diet without removing any. The five groups include: “new meat,” which are non-meat proteins such as beans, peas or eggs; fruits and veggies; whole grains; dairy; sugar and spice. The diet entails a five-week meal plan with a “three-four-five regimen.” The regimen consists of: “Breakfast choices are around 300 calories, lunches 400 and dinners 500. Snacks are about 150 calories each; add two, and your daily total clocks in at 1,500 calories,” US News & World Report shared.
4. WW (Weight Watchers Diet)
The WW Diet is most commonly known by its former name, Weight Watchers. The focus of the diet is to lose weight, of course, but its main priority is helping people live a healthy and balanced lifestyle. The new myWW program, which launched in 2019, is based on WW’s SmartPoints system. In this system, every food and beverage has a point value which is based on its nutritional value. The program aims to put you on a diet that is “lower in calories, saturated fat, and sugar, and higher in protein.” The program holds followers accountable via in-person meetings, online chats, or over the phone, from people who actually lost weight following WW.
5. Mayo Clinic Diet
The Mayo Clinic Diet consists of a food pyramid. In this pyramid, there is a focus on fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. “For about the same amount of calories, you could have a quarter of a Snickers bar or about two cups of broccoli. By sticking with the Mayo Clinic Diet, you’re expected to shed six to 10 pounds in two weeks and continue losing one to two pounds weekly until you’ve hit your goal weight,” US News & World Report revealed. The Mayo Clinic Diet can be followed via its website, and it guides you through two parts: “Lose it!” and “Live it!” Part one, “Lose it!” emphasizes 15 habits – “ones to add and ones to ditch. You don’t count calories, and you can snack all you want on fruits and veggies. After two weeks, you begin part two, ‘Live it!’ learning how many calories you should eat to either lose or maintain weight and where those calories should come from. No food group is completely off-limits – you’re developing a pattern of healthy eating you’ll follow for life.”