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Why Diets Don't Work (and what we're doing instead!)

Matt Skeffington

Matt’s primary role at Dynamic Strength and Conditioning is to make sure that our coaches and clients are consistently improving, all while operatin...

Matt’s primary role at Dynamic Strength and Conditioning is to make sure that our coaches and clients are consistently improving, all while operatin...

Sep 7 13 minutes read

You've probably heard the saying, "if it seems too good to be true, it probably is."

This is a great way to describe diets.

You see, dieting falls into one of two categories:

1) They don't work at all.

2) They work for awhile and then they don't.

Simply put, diets just don't work for multiple reasons. 

Before we get into why, let's discuss what a diet actually is. 

The definition of a diet is: a special course of food to which one restricts oneself, either to lose weight or for medical reasons.

The key word in that definition is "restricts".

In all cases, diets use their own strategy to restrict calories.

For you to lose weight, you need to be in what's known as a calorie deficit. 

This means we need to burn off more calories than we consume through our food intake.

Simply put, we need to increase our activity level and decrease our food intake.

Diets then create a system for you to decrease your food intake.

Some well known diets are The Whole 30 Diet, Atkins, Paleo, Keto, and Intermittent Fasting.

The Paleo diet restricts total calories by eliminating certain foods like processed foods.

Intermittent fasting decreases your total calorie intake by only allowing you to eat between certain hours.

The Keto diet restricts total calories by eliminating carbohydrate consumption.

Most people who start these diets see some weight loss initially (if they can stay on it long enough) but then often times end up putting the weight back on, and then some!

And the research agrees.

A group of UCLA researchers analyzed 31 long-term diet studies. Participants on these various diets stayed on them for 2 to 5 years. 

Their findings?

Some people lost weight in the beginning, but only 5-10% of their body-weight. 

The result? The majority of people regained all of their weight, plus some. 

The health benefits of dieting like decreasing blood pressure and disease risk? None. 

In fact, researchers believe they would have been better off not dieting at all from the stress of losing weight and putting it back on. The yo-yo effect of dieting actually can increase our risk of disease. 

Other research has shown that 95% of people who start traditional diets put the weight they lose back and and then some.

So, where is the disconnect?

Why are people unsuccessful at dieting?

Let's get into why diets aren't working and what we're doing instead here at DSC!

1| Unsustainable

Let's go back to that key word in the definition of diet -- restricts. 

Those who go on diets sometimes see success early in the program. 

The reason of this is restriction. 

Low fat -- restriction.

Keto -- restriction. 

Low calorie -- restriction. 

These deficits in certain foods work for a short time mainly through a drastic drop in calories and we see weight loss. 

But how do we feel?

Ask anyone on a diet how they feel and you'll hear words like: 

  • "Deprived" 

  • "Tired" 

  • "Sluggish" 

  • "Hungry!"

It's only a matter of time before we lose our will power and give into temptation. 

We find ourselves yet again, back at square one. 

Our Nutrition Coaching Program doesn't deprive or starve you of anything. 

In fact, our program does quite the opposite.

We work to help you fuel and energize your body to burn fat, and crush the day and your workouts!

Here are some quotes from our member on the very subject:

"The coaches opened my eyes to the fact that I was actually eating too little to lose weight. I wasn't fueling my body to burn fat. I learned how to be conscious of the foods I am eating without feeling deprived." - Sarah

"Yes you can lose weight and still love the food you eat. My total weight loss with DSC Nutrition Coaching Program is 34lbs and counting!" - Stacey

"I can honestly say I was never hungry or felt deprived of anything during the program. I am already down 20lbs and gained 2.5lbs of muscle!" - Linda

2| No support/accountability

So, you're ready to start your new diet. 

You have your new book and meal plan. 

It's just you and the program. And that is the problem. 

Where do you turn for guidance and support?

Who is there checking in, seeing how things are going and making sure you are working toward your goals?

No one.

This is one of the major issues with diets. There is no help. There is no support system. It's you and you alone. 

This is exactly why we created our Group Nutrition Coaching Program. 

The group aspect creates an overwhelming amount of positive motivation and allows our members to share questions, ideas, recipes and help and support each other. 

The coaches hold you accountable, on task and working toward your goals. 

Here's how our weekly coaching and check-ins work:

Our coaches will be checking in with you weekly to see how you're progressing through the program.

From there, they will be giving you personalized feedback on what areas you did well and where you can improve for the coming week with updated individual target goals.

We arm our members with a specific nutrition game-plan for the week. 

This is HUGE for the success of our Nutrition Coaching Members.

Knowing that a coach is going to be checking in keeps many of our members accountable, consistent, and on track.

They are also there to help you with any questions you have. 

This winning combination of giving you a personalized plan for the week along with the support and accountability is crucial for the success of the program. 

"What helped me the most were the weekly check-ins with my assigned DSC nutrition coach. I wanted to show progress each week, so that was motivating. Then I started to see real changes! In just 8 weeks, I lost 15 pounds and 2.5% body fat!" - Jen

"The weekly check-ins with the coaches were also very helpful! Getting their personalized, direct feedback and guidance was huge and I really knew they were rooting for me to succeed every step of the way! In just 8-weeks, I lost 20 pounds and 2 pant sizes with DSC's Nutrition Coaching!" - Mary

3| All or nothing

What diets fail to realize is that people don't do well with massive changes like overhauling your entire nutrition. 

Imagine going from eating one way all or most of your life and then changing everything in one day.

Take the Keto diet for example which is a very low-carb, high fat diet.

The success of the program comes from removing calories from your diet in the form of carbohydrates.

Here's typically what happens:

We get into the program, do well for a couple of days or weeks, then have a small slip up.

Maybe we decide to indulge in something that isn't allowed on the program like ice cream.

We view this as a failure and the next thing you know, you've quit.

Sound familiar?

Perfectionism is one of the biggest killers of a diet.

Instead, we take a flexible approach to dieting.

We teach you how to still include the foods you love into your diet.

Yes, you can lose weight and still enjoy ice cream here and there. We'll show you how! 

That way you never feel deprived and when you enjoy that not so healthy food, we coach you on how to get right back on track.

Improving your nutrition, losing weight isn't about being perfect -- it's about being consistent.

It's not about starving or restricting yourself or being all or nothing -- that won't get you far.

Instead we take a longterm approach to your health.

Got off track a bit? That's ok. Our coaches are here to get you right back! 

4| No education 

One of the biggest reasons why diets do not work is that they fail to educate. 

Diets neglect to arm their participants with knowledge needed to make continual progress. 

What do you do once the diet is over?

How do you make the right choices when you're on the go or at a dinner party?

How do you enjoy the foods you love without sabotaging your progress or quitting all together?

How do you eat to improve your workout performance?

How do you eat to feel better and have more energy?

This leaves dieters confused, frustrated and destined for failure. 

Instead, our program takes a life-long approach to educating our members, leading to lasting results. 

We arm them with the right habits and knowledge so when they leave the program, they have the skills and tools to make their own choices and keep progressing towards their goals. 

"This wasn’t a diet – this was changing the way you eat, creating good eating habits, and making better eating choices. I added more/new vegetables to my diet, meal prepped (hello kitchen!), and learned about fighting fat with good fats.
During this program alone, I lost 18 lbs!" - Karin

"I have done Weight Watchers before and this program worked so much better for me because it also taught me the "why" behind making better food choices. Not just eat this or that, but actually understanding the differences. In just 8-weeks, I lost 20 pounds and 2 pant sizes with DSC's Nutrition Coaching!" - Mary

What we're doing instead.

Our Nutrition Coaching Program is the anti-diet.

It's not built of one-size-fits-all fads, quick fixes, or magic pills. 

It's not overwhelming or unsupportive. 

You are NEVER alone. 

Instead, our Nutrition Coaching Program is built off a customized approach to improving your nutrition, creating better nutritional habits, and losing weight.

It's about having a better relationship with and a better understanding of food. 

It's about having the proper guidance, support and accountability, allowing you to have the body and health you deserve. 

It's about YOU and lasting results!

So how does our program work?

We start by setting you up with one of our nutrition coaches.

From there, it's all about getting to know you and your specific goals.

We want to know about your past nutritional accomplishments or struggles to best serve you!

This is all done online at your convenience. 

Then the program begins. 

We work with you to:

1st - Learn exactly how to eat for your goals

As we said earlier, weight-loss is about being in a calorie deficit, meaning we need to be consistent with eating less calories than we are expending. 

Typically our members enter our program either over-eating or drastically under-eating, both of which have a negative effect on your health and weight. 

Our coaches will teach you how to eat the right amount of foods (carbs, proteins, and fats) each day to get you moving towards your goals.

Imagine knowing you're eating the right foods and the right amounts of those foods to lose weight and feel great!

Research has shown the average person underestimates their calorie intake by 40-60%!

That means most of us think we're eating less calories than we're burning but we're most often eating in a surplus, therefore gaining or maintaining our weight. 

Our coaches will make sure you're right on tracking, eating the right amounts of food for you!

No more guesswork!

2nd - Build lasting nutritional habits

Most diets fail due to a lack of habits.

If about half of our nutritional choices are out of habit think about the changes we can make to our weight-loss by changing our habits.

We first work to become aware of the poor nutritional habits that are causing us to overeat like eating because we're bored, tired, or stressed or other habits like snacking too much, drinking sodas, or eating too fast.

Then we arm our members with better nutritional habits like:

  • How to eat for fat-loss

  • How to build balanced meals

  • How to eat before and after your workouts

  • How to meal prep and plan ahead

  • How to eat mindfully -- not because you're bored or stressed

  • How to stay on track on the weekends, holidays, and when you're out to dinner

  • Proper hydration and MUCH MORE!

Our mission is to end weight loss frustration!

To provide the guidance, education, and support for you to eat better and feel your best

And finally, to complete our program with the skills and knowledge to continue to see incredible progress for the long haul.

Are you ready to learn exactly how to eat to lose weight and feel GREAT?

Are you ready to end fat-loss frustration?

Join our Nutrition Coaching Program starting September 16th!

Click below to get started! ⬇️

Our Nutrition Coaching Program starts September 16th!

Lose weight. Feel GREAT!

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