Your Opinion on Dieting and Weight Loss

waiehsewaiehse Posts: 62 ✭✭
Recently I've seen on tumblr a lot of fitness blog type posts but at the same time posts that seem to encourage eating disorders. I've never really given much thought to it myself but I've heard a lot of opposing views on whether or not dieting is right.There's the opinion that everyone is beautiful/size doesn't matter and therefore dieting to lose weight is bad because it's "starving yourself". And then there's the view that dieting is an important part of keeping fit. So I've come to Nerdfighteria hoping to get your opinions (and why you have those opinions) as to solidify my own. 

Do you think dieting is right? Is it healthy?
Is dieting only for weight loss right or should only be to get fit?
What kinds of diets are okay and not okay? (Eg. Atkins, vegan, etc)
Is dieting more important than exercise?

Comments

  • SunParakeetSunParakeet Posts: 8
    Well, in my opinion, dieting is bullshit. I mean, yeah, if it makes you feel better, then do it and whatever, but I think it's quite tricky and dangerous.

    The problem here is that every day society puts these stupid ideas of body images in our brain and makes everyone who does not fit the ideal body image feel bad about themselves. So you may diet and then feel better, because you are now closer to the ideal body image.
    BUT I think that this is a catastrophy. Because your feeling of self-worth, your self-respect is now based on a change you did to fit in, and NOT on who you are and what you therefor look like. So I strongly believe that this is a dangeorus way of achieving a feeling of self-worth, well you actually don't achieve that feeling, you're just faking it.
    Of course it can be healthy and of course you may feel better if your body is healthier, but as I said, I think it is dangerous. Do it if you feel unhealthy, but be careful and check your motives.

    And also everyone has the right to live an unhealthy life. People are allowed to smoke, they are allowed to drink ridiculous amounts of the poison that is alcohol, and it's no big deal, hardly anyone criticizes them. But being fat or eating unhealthy is a no-go. Why?

    So, I can't give any opinion on which diets are okay or better, I personally think they're all stupid. The same with exercise. Do sports if you like it, but not to get thin - or "fit" how it's apparently called...
  • LeonSchLeonSch Posts: 61
    This is the conclusion I reached myself, after struggling with a general bad shape and not being happy with my body.

    First of all, let me state that yes, people come in different shapes and sizes. However, a certain amount of exercise and not too much of any kint of nutrient (in particular sugars, fats and such, who are overpresent in most of our current eating patterns) is a good idea for everybody, even if the particular amounts differ per person

    Dieting as in deliberately not eating enough to lose weight is a generally bad idea. The problem there is that the 'problem' (which I will assume is an unhealthy amount of body fat and weight) is only temporarily suspended. A diet like this is, by definition, not your natural way to live. Therefore, there will be a moment when you will stop dieting and go back to your natural unhealthy way of living.

    The thing to do, in my opinion, is to create a style of living that you feel good with, including an eating pattern where you get enough 'good' nutrients and not too many 'bad' ones, and occasional excercise.

    In short: if you want to be healthy, live healthy. Don't overdo, but don't underdo anything either.
  • LazarusLazarus Posts: 353 ✭✭✭
    I do not believe that any 'diet' is mentally healthy, because going on a 'diet' implies that one day it will end and again you can eat what you want. Which only means that you will return to the way you were before, which will lead back to the same problems.
    If you want to lead a healthier life style you need to make life long changes, I've done this in small steps and found it very helpful to my health. I've cut nothing completely out of my diet, because i think it just makes me want to eat those things more. But I only have ice cream at birthday parties, and I only have soda when i got to the movie theater. After making these changes, I felt better in my daily life, I had more energy in the long run. And after the first two weeks i no longer really wanted to partake in those unhealthy foods. Unfortunately because of allergies I've never been able to try eating just vegan food, I'm curious about it but I'm allergic to too many fruits and vegetables.
    Basically I think if you want to live a healthier life that you need to make life changes, and not go on diets.  
  • MCJCMCJC MissouriPosts: 94 ✭✭
    edited April 2013
    I think you all have good opinions. I don't really believe in "dieting;" I believe in watching very intently what I eat and what I put in my body. I eat when I'm hungry and I try not to overeat. Also, I think it's a good thing to keep my physical body in shape. I try to run daily and workout every other day. It should be a lifestyle choice to be healthier. Dieting to be attractive can be dangerous.

    by MCJC
    "Gallantry entails great risks"
    -Siegmeyer of Catarina
  • RaeRae Posts: 1,484 ✭✭✭
    i think that people should feel good about themselves, so if what it takes to love yourself is losing a few pounds, then feel free. 
  • RemusRemus Posts: 105 ✭✭
    edited April 2013
    what do you define as dieting. I have a tendency to eat crisps for no other reason then eating them. I buy a bag and I clean it out in the same evening. I should stop doing that.

    I don't think you should ever stop having 3 meals a day, and you should defenitly eat cake at birthdays, but cutting excess is something that can't really be that harmfull. At a young age, just not overeating and semi regular excersie should probably get you into decend shape.

    And Vegan is not a diet as much as a life choice, although if you see these people on TV it does seem like a good way to get bone thin.
    by Remus
    there is no excuse for ignorance, unless you're busy learning something else.
  • TheycallmetomTheycallmetom Posts: 20
    Been said in some words already. But it is about lifestyle and not dieting. I mean the difference is the former has a more permanent connotations whilst the latter is more temporary.

    I think it is all about having a reason to change that lifestyle, any reason. I find it a bit odd, just needing a trigger in your head to happen, just to do something


    I was 17 and a half stone(do the math,14 pounds in a stone I believe) about 2 years ago when I was 18.  A girl I was completely mad about said no to me. So I was just looking in the mirror looking at myself and just thinking.

    "Oh, I can see why she would say that, I really should do something so my chances are better next time"


    That summer I went from 17 and a half to 13 and a half stone, as a result of just stupidly running everyday and calorie watching. All because I got rejected ( and no that wasn't the first time either! aha) by a girl!

    None the less even today it is still something you gotta keep a mind on, thank my lucky stars there is a free gym available! But I do feel better for the change so I keep up with.

    To end the ramble, I think diets are just not the greatest mentality, but just changing your lifestyle would help! Exercise and calorie watching worked for me.  But having said that you go with what works for you I suppose. All I'd say is that you got to have the right mentality to make the change.



  • waiehsewaiehse Posts: 62 ✭✭
    Thanks for all the great and well thought out responses. I agree with the majority of you about the healthy lifestyle>dieting thing.

    @Remus I do the same thing. I only ever eat stuff like chips or candy when I'm not really hungry but I  just want them. I've heard a lot about super healthy lifestyles that just seem a bit extreme (hours of exercise and meals that are mostly vegetables and protein) just to keep in shape but I completely agree with your middle way approach. Whenever I'm about to eat something unhealthy I weigh (haha punny) the benefits of having a delicious meal/snack to the repercussions of eating something unhealthy. So although I don't eat a giant bowl of ice cream every day, I'll still eat birthday cake and parties. I only included vegan in the list because one of my vegetarian friends referred to vegetarianism as the only eating disorder she's allowed to have.  
  • Ev8Ev8 Posts: 39
    I used to count calories. And exercise like crazy. While I reached my goal–I lost 26, 5 pounds–I got myself severe anemia. I ended dieting a few years ago and haven’t gained the weight back. I made some changes that stuck. I still try to exercise regularly. I tried a few extreme diets while in University. One ended with me passing out.

    I don’t think dieting is good for you. It can help lose weight, sure. Without exercise the result won’t be that pleasing. You're lucky if you don't end up with a health problem.

    I am happier having lost the weight but I don’t believe I did it the right way.

  • RialVestroRialVestro Posts: 6,392 ✭✭✭
    edited April 2013
    It seems like you're asking for a black and white answer. Is dieting good or is it bad. Well sorry but there is no clear answer.

    The thing is being overweight is not healthy. Overweight people are more likely to have heart attacks and other health problems. Being underweight is not healthy either as obviously you can starve yourself to death.

    The problem with dieting is when you're dieting for some unrealistic expectation of beauty. As long as your dieting goals are actually realistic there's nothing wrong with it.

    Girls, when people start asking you when the baby is due and you're not pregnant then you should go on a diet. Guys, if you need to wear a bra then you should go on a diet. If you can see your rib cage then you need to gain weight, you should never be able to see your rib cage. Anywhere between the two extremes then you're perfectly fine as you are.

    I should probably also specify that forcing yourself to throw up or not eating at all is not a good way to be dieting even if you do need to loose weight. So I guess the answer is, dieting within reason is good but you go over board then really it's no longer dieting, it's starving yourself.
    by RialVestro
    Ni, peng, nee-wom! Ecky, ecky, ecky, pakang, zoom-ping! Baa weep grahna weep ninny bong!
  • waiehsewaiehse Posts: 62 ✭✭
    Girls, when people start asking you when the baby is due and you're not pregnant then you should go on a diet. Guys, if you need to wear a bra then you should go on a diet. If you can see your rib cage then you need to gain weight, you should never be able to see your rib cage. Anywhere between the two extremes then you're perfectly fine as you are.
    I wouldn't say that a visible rib cage is an extreme. I have a friend who's in shape, eats a ton, and is around the average weight for his height but his rib cage is really visible because it's wide. And I have seen girls who are fairly slim but kind of look pregnant because all their fat goes to their bellies but that's just how their bodies work. 
    I agree with what the other people on this thread said though. Dieting is bad as a concept because it implies that once you get to whatever your goal was you can go back to treating your body like crap. Some people do need lose weight but dieting sets up a bad mindset for it. 

  • RialVestroRialVestro Posts: 6,392 ✭✭✭
    waiehse said:
    I wouldn't say that a visible rib cage is an extreme. I have a friend who's in shape, eats a ton, and is around the average weight for his height but his rib cage is really visible because it's wide. And I have seen girls who are fairly slim but kind of look pregnant because all their fat goes to their bellies but that's just how their bodies work. 
    I agree with what the other people on this thread said though. Dieting is bad as a concept because it implies that once you get to whatever your goal was you can go back to treating your body like crap. Some people do need lose weight but dieting sets up a bad mindset for it. 

    First off when I was talking about the rib cage thing I didn't mean this. http://ts1.mm.bing.net/th?id=H.4935712969066936&pid=15.1 That's a skinny guy sucking his gut in, all you can see is where his rib cage ends above his stomach. That's fine. No when I talk about being able to see the rib cage I mean this. http://ts3.explicit.bing.net/th?id=H.4631259909326390&pid=15.1 That woman isn't sucking her gut in and you're seeing more than just where the rib cage ends above her stomach. You can see between each rib. That's not healthy. When you quite literally look like a skeleton you're too skinny.

    Second, that last part is a contradiction. How can you be slim and fat at the same time? I should also mention that pregnant women don't even really start showing some times till around 6 months. Some women will loose all the extra weight as soon as the baby is born others will have to work to get back in shape. That works differently for everyone. But it's around that last 3 months that people often can't tell the difference between a pregnant woman and a fat woman.

    I'll also point out that you're probably still within a healthy weight level there but maybe bordering on the unhealthy side. For the women who don't just loose all that extra baby weight after giving birth, dieting is encouraged by doctors, possibly to prevent further weight gain rather than to loose weight but again, that's different for everyone.
    Ni, peng, nee-wom! Ecky, ecky, ecky, pakang, zoom-ping! Baa weep grahna weep ninny bong!
  • waiehsewaiehse Posts: 62 ✭✭
    @RialVestro Sorry if I misinterpreted your rib cage comment since it just came off as a bit forceful. I wasn't talking about pregnant women at all, I was just going off of what you said about girls who look like they're pregnant. I've met a lot of women in my life who have slim legs, arms, faces and narrow waists but have big bellies because different bodies work different ways. I just assumed everyone knew a few women like that, hope this clears it up though. 
    All I was trying to say is you can't judge someone's health based on their appearance because everyone's body and metabolism are different. 
  • RialVestroRialVestro Posts: 6,392 ✭✭✭
    waiehse said:
    @RialVestro Sorry if I misinterpreted your rib cage comment since it just came off as a bit forceful. I wasn't talking about pregnant women at all, I was just going off of what you said about girls who look like they're pregnant. I've met a lot of women in my life who have slim legs, arms, faces and narrow waists but have big bellies because different bodies work different ways. I just assumed everyone knew a few women like that, hope this clears it up though. 
    All I was trying to say is you can't judge someone's health based on their appearance because everyone's body and metabolism are different. 
    Oh, that whole slim but fat thing makes a lot more sense now.

    Yes different people's bodies work different ways but just because they have thin arms and legs doesn't mean a big gut isn't potentially harmful to their health. It's actually a contributor to back pain.

    My brother has a fast metabolism. He can eat anything he wants and never gain any weight. He's 32 by the way so it's not a result of being young as a lot of people seem to think. He's always been that way. I'm 27, I barely eat anything, and I'm still a fatty. I was thin when I was little but just started gaining weight as a result of stress and actually had a heart attack in 6th grade. I'm still pretty fat though it's all in my torso and legs, not my arms. My arms don't really match the rest of my body... I actually thought that was really weird till now.
    Ni, peng, nee-wom! Ecky, ecky, ecky, pakang, zoom-ping! Baa weep grahna weep ninny bong!
  • StillnotgingerStillnotginger Posts: 26
    edited May 2013
    waiehse said:
    @RialVestro Sorry if I misinterpreted your rib cage comment since it just came off as a bit forceful. I wasn't talking about pregnant women at all, I was just going off of what you said about girls who look like they're pregnant. I've met a lot of women in my life who have slim legs, arms, faces and narrow waists but have big bellies because different bodies work different ways.

    That is true, I know people like that too. Some people just tend to carry their weight in their stomachs. I have a friend who is not fat but if she has any extra weight on her it all goes to her stomach area, so she looks pregnant. Especially since the rest of her is slim, so it makes her belly more noticeable. Luckily she has a good sense of humor so she doesn't let it bother her if people make stupid comments.
    Also I actually had someone ask me if I was pregnant when I was in high school, and I was not fat and had a small waist/flat stomach so I don't think others comments are a good way to gauge whether you need to go on a diet.
    by Stillnotginger
    Science isn't about why, it's about why not. Why is so much of our science dangerous? Why not marry safe science if you love it so much. In fact, why not invent a special safety door that won’t hit you in the butt on the way out.
  • RialVestroRialVestro Posts: 6,392 ✭✭✭
    Stillnotginger said:

    That is true, I know people like that too. Some people just tend to carry their weight in their stomachs. I have a friend who is not fat but if she has any extra weight on her it all goes to her stomach area, so she looks pregnant. Especially since the rest of her is slim, so it makes her belly more noticeable. Luckily she has a good sense of humor so she doesn't let it bother her if people make stupid comments.
    Also I actually had someone ask me if I was pregnant when I was in high school, and I was not fat and had a small waist/flat stomach so I don't think others comments are a good way to gauge whether you need to go on a diet.
    I don't know why anyone would ask if you were pregnant if you had a flat stomach... unless they were just asking because of the teen pregnancy rate. You did say you were in high school.
    Ni, peng, nee-wom! Ecky, ecky, ecky, pakang, zoom-ping! Baa weep grahna weep ninny bong!
  • StillnotgingerStillnotginger Posts: 26
    I dunno, it was at lunch and maybe they thought I was eating a lot/seemed hungry or something. I did tend to eat fast at lunch during school.
    Science isn't about why, it's about why not. Why is so much of our science dangerous? Why not marry safe science if you love it so much. In fact, why not invent a special safety door that won’t hit you in the butt on the way out.
  • sohaasohaa Posts: 6
    Actually many people think that dieting means cutting down calories, and starving yourself. Actually its not true. You can eat whatever you want just controlling he carbs, and indulging in light workout. This is how safe and effective weightloss happens, and believe me i have never seen people losing weight while being on a specified strict "diet"
  • JMcKJMcK 51.44°N, 0.33°WPosts: 38
    I'm on a diet for health reasons (my cholesterol was high). Doc said to lose weight and lower my cholesterol, didn't say how, so I came up with seven rules. These are my own, I don't recommend these to anybody else.

    1) No fads, no bullshit, no skipped meals. Get at least 2,000 calories per day over three square meals.
    2) No more than 50g/day of red meat* (averaged over a week). All other meat must be poultry or fish.
    3) Cheese is a garnish, not an ingredient!
    4) Never deep fry, seldom shallow fry.
    5) Mains are quarter starch, quarter protein, half greenery.
    6) Get at least half a kilo of fruit and veg per day.
    7) No fructose without fibre.

    Over the past four months my cholesterol has dropped from 5.2 to 4.3, so it's worked for that. I've also gone from 78.2kg to 73.6. In terms of my general health I do judo, I lift, I swim and I scuba dive; so my ticker's in good enough shape.

    *50g of red meat is roughly equal to two rashers of bacon.
    Never fear to be kind, but never confuse kindness with ego.
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