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Lifestyle Change vs. Dieting

By Randi Morse

Every time you turn around the healthcare industry is throwing out a new buzz phrase. I remember when I first heard the term "lifestyle change." I thought it was just another phrase to promote diets. It turns out that there's a huge difference between a diet and a lifestyle change. There are some diet companies out there who tried to sell their program by claiming it is a lifestyle program when, in reality, it's the same old diet program that has been around for 50 years. Let's break down the difference between diet and a true lifestyle change.


Diets are designed to be temporary. They often require a great deal of sacrifice, such as cutting all carbohydrates out of your diet or eating nothing but cabbage soup for weeks. Yes, as ridiculous as it sounds, the cabbage soup diet was an actual diet fad in the 1990s. Most people who go on a diet feel that restriction very deeply and may struggle with sticking to the diet because they feel hungry and unfulfilled. Once you have achieved your weight loss goal and stop following the dietary guidelines, you are much more likely to gain back the weight you have lost. Some even find they'd gained back more.

Lifestyle Changes

Unlike diets, lifestyle changes are not temporary. These are changes that you put into place which are meant to last for the rest of your life. For example, a person going from eating meat to becoming a vegetarian has made a lifestyle change. Lifestyle changes are also all about balance. You shouldn't be feeling deprived or defeated with a lifestyle change, but rather you should feel more confident and satisfied once you have adjusted to the change. 

While there are plenty of websites and programs out there that offer lifestyle change suggestions, in reality it is something that you have to do on your own. Following someone else's lifestyle change plan is a temporary fix, you need to find the solution that works for you. Learning how to plan healthy meals, or finding types of exercises that you enjoy will help to promote your satisfaction with the changes you've made. Once you have made your lifestyle changes part of your routine you will find and it becomes second nature. It can be very intimidating to make a lifestyle change, but the rewards are almost always definitely worth it.

To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Hiram, Ga.

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