By Amy VanLiew

Have you been overwhelmed by all the crazy diets out there….Low Fat, Low Carb, Atkins, DASH, South Beach, Paleo, Raw, Vegan, Ketogenic, Gluten Free…it can make any person’s head spin in an attempt to meet their health goals.

In my effort to maintain my weight and to help my clients I have tried many of these crazy diets in search of the “Holy Grail” but guess what – there isn’t one.   EVERYONE is different so how can there be ONE DIET?  Experimenting with these diets I did find theories that really worked for me but I know for a fact they would not work for some.  The South Beach Diet and my latest experiment with The Ketogenic diet helped me get back down to a more comfortable set point for me.  On top of that my cranky knees have never felt better.  That said, I know several that had no energy and digestion issues when eating this way.  My niece went Vegan but I can’t even function on a vegetarian diet.  With all the confusion, marketing and frankly “diet cults” out there, how in the world do you know what to believe, to lose weight or just to stay healthy?

My suggestion is to become your own scientist.  Now don’t stop reading, I promise it’s not that technical.   Getting to what helps you lose weight, to have more energy or to stop feeling yucky is as simple as learning to pay attention to your body and how it reacts to the things you are putting into it on a daily basis.

The process steps are straightforward.  To begin, carry a small memo pad with you and keep a food diary (or lab notebook to all my scientists out there).  Log the foods you eat and then gather data.  If you want to lose weight you will have to weigh yourself.  If you want to improve how you feel use a 1-10 scale.

The next step after you have gotten into the habit of tracking your food and gathering your data is to experiment with changing what you eat or when you eat or even how much.   Keep your experiment simple and only for a week.  Maybe you try cutting back on grains, or sugar or eating more plant based proteins to see what happens to your body.

Rather than ”going on a diet’’ conduct an experiment of ONE.  This will allow you to create a personal healthy-eating plan that is as unique as your lifestyle.  If you don’t think you can figure it out on your own, come talk to me.  I LOVE to experiment and can show you some of my engineering problem solving tools that have helped me figure out how to maintain my health and weight.   I promise I won’t get too techy on you!

Recommended Reading:  Diet Cults: The Surprising Fallacy at the Core of Nutrition Fads and a Guide to Healthy Eating for the Rest of Us by Matt Fitzgerald

Have a happy August.

Amy VanLiew, 760-310-8939,  OR check out my website at