We all know at least one person who has done the GM diet (and bragged about it). GM diet is one of the most popular diets, originally made for the employees of the General Motors to stay in shape. Recently it has resurfaced because of high accessibility through internet and fast results (people lose 2-5 kilos in just a week). There is also the factor of simplicity as you take certain food groups on certain days and abstain from the rest. But should you do it to lose a few inches off your waist, this article explores why you should reconsider:
Weight Loss v/s Fat Loss
The biggest problem when you lose weight fast is that of fat loss. Even if you are working out, it has been shown in studies that an aggressive caloric deficit (more than 25-30% of net calories at which your weight is maintained) does result in loss of lean mass as well. Couple that with 5 days out of 7 in which you are not getting enough protein (4 days are zero protein days), the body breaks down muscle to generate essential amino acids for other body functions.
This basically means since you are losing weight too quickly, you are losing the good weight too. This is bad for the body resulting in fatigue, weakness and slowdown in metabolism. With my clients, I often see that people on GM diets come back with a higher body fat % even when they have lost weight. What is worst is many people do this frequently to keep their weight in check. This yo-yoing of body weight chronically damages physiological functions (think thyroid, adrenal glands).
What About Cleansing Your Body?
Another argument I hear is that your body needs cleansing or detoxifying from time to time and the GM diet is a good way. While it would need another detailed article to explain why detoxifying through the GM diet or any diet for that matter is not possible, rest assured that your liver and kidneys get rid of all the impurities that needs to get rid of, from the blood.
Any significant change that you may feel is from the extra fiber you get from fruits and vegetables resulting in better bowel movements or additional fluid intake which results in better hydration. But you don’t need a vegetable day or a liquid diet to achieve it. Someone who has read this article this far should be conscious enough to eat enough vegetables and/or drink enough water every single day.
Does the GM diet work for weight loss? Absolutely! Does it come with equally effective fat loss as well? Not really. While programs like these still might work, you should always look at the bigger picture. Think of it, it’s your body so you should be in it for the long haul. Take your time with it and do it the sustainable way. At Psi Fitness, I get happy if my clients are losing 1-1.5% body fat per month (<0.5 Kg for a normal 60-70 Kg adult). Some may feel it is too slow but every body has a different way of accepting fitness regimes. If they stick to it for a few months, most clients lose 5-10% while they get stronger and faster all while losing inches.
No matter what diet you follow, it is always a good idea to have it supervised at every step. Book a certified dietician for weight loss from Urban Company now!