Is the Zone Diet just another fad? Well, it’s currently the favourite diet of the celebrities including Jennifer Aniston, Brad Pitt and many other well-known faces from the world of film and theatre. So what is all the fuss about?
The Zone Diet was created by Dr. Barry Sears, and is based around the consumption of correct ratios of food groups. In theory, by regulating your insulin levels, you keep your body’s metabolism performing at its optimum level and the weight just falls off! Well, whatever the theory is, it seems to be working for some people so let’s take a closer look at what this diet entails.
The Zone Diet
Our bodies are not fundamentally geared up to process “junk food” very well, and that’s one reason why it’s considered harmful to us. Although we live in a fast-paced modern age, our body structure is based on a very old design, which goes back to prehistoric times. Our bodies expect to be fed foods like lean protein and natural carbohydrates, which is exactly the foods that our ancestors would have eaten.
The theory behind the Zone Diet is if we adhere to the correct ratios of carbohydrates, fats and proteins that our body needs, we will help the body to regulate the levels of insulin. Keeping insulin at the right levels will help speed up the body’s metabolism, and the result is, you lose weight. All you are actually doing is feeding the body exactly what it was designed to expect.
The ratio of food groups is: 40% Carbohydrates, 30% Fat and 30% Protein. So, each meal is based on a calculation.
Creating a Zone Diet meal can be a little tricky, as the ingredients have to be measured precisely. Food groups are classified into ‘blocks’ and then further classified into ‘mini-blocks’. A typical meal might consist of one block of Carbohydrates, but this may be broken down further into three mini-blocks, which might comprise 1 cup of green beans, 2 cups of yellow squash and 1 glass of red wine.
The Zone Diet also allows for 2 snacks a day and the occasional glass of wine, calorific intake tends to be much lower when on the diet. In that respect it is more restrictive than other measured diets such as the South Beach Diet.
So, what are the benefits of the Zone Diet?
—Dieters tend to get all the nutrients they need, as all fruits and vegetables are okay to eat. Smaller portion sizes will also help to build a healthier lifestyle and maintain weight loss.
—Cravings for carbohydrates tend to disappear after a few days as the body adjusts to the new high protein diet.
—The concentration on lean proteins and “good cholesterol” is healthy for your heart.
—Weight loss on The Zone Diet can be very rapid! It is essentially a low-carb, low-calorie diet and can give great results in a short period of time.
The not so beneficial aspects are?
—Essentially, the Zone Diet should be considered as a short term weight loss remedy.
—Coming off the diet can result in putting the weight back on very fast if dieters return to their previous eating habits.
—The diet can work out to be quite expensive. Creating Zone meals requires buying special cookbooks and other materials.
—The Zone Diet can be time-consuming, as food preparation is sometimes a complicated process! It is therefore not practical for some people.