If you’re like most people, you probably turn to friends, family or even social media to see what’s working for people and then simply follow their lead. Don’t do that. While going gluten-free or jumping on the juice-cleanse bandwagon may have helped a friend trim down, following in their footsteps won’t necessarily be effective for you—or them—in the long run. By Dana Leigh Smith.
To ensure you don’t fall victim to weight-loss misinformation, we’ve separated the facts from fiction. Read on to learn which all-to-common weight-loss tips can derail your diet and trim-down efforts.
DIET-DERAILING TIP #1:
GO GLUTEN-FREE TO LOSE WEIGHT
In a recent poll of 1,000 participants, 63 percent thought a gluten-free diet would improve their physical health. But unless you’re suffering from Celiac’s disease, this simply isn’t true. Gluten-free dieters typically cut out fiber-rich whole grains and other grain-based products enriched with folate.
And when a diet lacks fiber and folate, it not only raises the risk of weight gain, but also ups the risk for diabetes and heart disease. It can also leave you feeling lethargic, which makes it difficult to give it your all at the gym and stay active (read: burn calories) throughout the day. Not to mention, just because something is gluten-free doesn’t mean it’s calorie-free. In fact, ETNT experts have previously noted that gluten-free products tend to be higher in sugar and fat than their traditional counterparts.
Still interested in ditching gluten? Be smart about it. Instead of turning to products that have had the gluten removed (like gluten-free cake), rely on foods that are naturally free of the nutrient like spinach, strawberries, broccoli, lentils, beans, quinoa and amaranth, which are all rich in folate and fiber, too. Jonesing for something sweet? Look for naturally gluten-free desserts like fruit and dark chocolate and enjoy it in moderation.