What is this controversial CICO diet?
The name stands for “calories in, calories out”, hence we can figure out quite easily the concept that lies behind this diet. You can eat whatever you please as long as the number of calories that you burn is higher than your intake of calories. It’s not hard to understand why people prefer this diet, since it allows you to still eat your favorite foods and anything else you might desire as long as you keep your calories under control.
Why is it controversial and does it really work?
It created a huge buzz within the online environment because it might actually work and you can lose weight by following this diet, but is CICO diet the answer? The thing is that just because you do lose weight it doesn’t make you healthier. The diet does not stand for healthy eating, instead it stands for great math when it comes to counting calories.
When it comes to its efficiency, since it’s easy to follow, people don’t tend to give it up as easily as some other diet that requires huge adjustments in your lifestyle. However, the logic behind it is bound to work, if we think rationally, since consuming more calories than we take in, is bound to lead to a weight loss of some sorts. What we must not forget though, is that when it comes to fighting back the extra kilos, there are far more things to take into account than just the calories.
What are the benefits of CICO diet?
- It can actually help you lose weight
As I already stated above, the principle it follows is quite logical. Many studies have also backed this idea and come to sustain the fact that losing more calories than you eat can even lead to a loss of one pound per week.
- Losing weight might be good for your health
You can read everywhere, when it comes to nearly any sort of disease, either at the prevention topic or at the treatment topic, that obesity can be a huge cause. Having extra weight to carry around each day cannot be a good thing for your body and system. Losing weight can help you reduce the risks of heart disease, joint pains and even improve sleep.
- It’s easy to follow
As I already mentioned this as well, the CICO diet does not require some huge adjustments in your lifestyle or diet, unlike other ones, where you strictly have to follow an eating pattern. Hence, it gives you a certain sense of flexibility and independence. You can continue eating your favorite foods and even enjoy that piece of cake you never wanted to give up on and still at the end of the day if you do your math right, end up with less calories, so it’s all good.
What are the downsides of CICO diet?
- Not promoting long term weight loss
Although you can lose weight, as we have seen above, quite logically, without giving up much and keeping your cake in place, taking into account that CICO diet does not stand for any sort of lifestyle change, chances are that the moment you give it up and stop counting calories, you will re-gain the weight you lost. Instead of just counting the calories, you could take a look at some lifestyle changes that would help you fight the extra kilos on the long term.
- The focus lies simply on the calories
Instead of taking a look at your overall meals, the diet merely advises you to count the calories. However, this does not mean that the foods you consume contain the amount of nutrients your body requires. And keep in mind that a nutrient deficiency can lead to further problems, such as an impairment in the immune system.
- Don’t narrow it down to calories
As I stated above already, the weight loss topic is a very complex one and narrowing it down to merely counting calories might not be the best approach. We have to bear in mind the fact that weight loss can occur because of a variety of factors, not just because we eat more than we have to. For instance, hypothyroidism usually leads to weigh gain, hormonal changes as well, certain medications can have weight gain as side effects and so on.
As a short conclusion, aim to take a look at your overall diet rather than just stick to counting calories in order to lose weight. Extra kilos are a tricky topic and just because you might start losing weight out of a sudden it does not mean that you became healthier ad neither does it mean that you won’t gain it all back once you return to your previous lifestyle.
Hence, instead of just noting down calories, note down foods, nutrients and aim for a healthier diet instead of just eating cake and junk food in tiny portions. Also bear in mind that physical exercise is essential for both weight loss and a healthier lifestyle.
The key might lie in finding the solution that works for you and constantly trying to improve your overall wellbeing.
Let us know how you feel about the CICO diet, given that you tried it and whether you would suggest it to your friends or our fellow readers.