The Zone Diet

There are many diets on the market these days and most people have tried more than one. The Zone Diet has been around for a number of years and is still being chosen by those looking to lose weight and improve their health.

History of the Zone diet

The Zone diet was designed by Barry Sears, a former biochemist at M.I.T. He says that the problem with our lives revolves around eating habits. If we were to eat in “the Zone” we would be healthier, not have to contend with obesity and live a longer, more meaningful life.

His principle is based on the “40-30-30” rule of eating. Your body needs a moderate amount of protein, more carbohydrates and some healthy fat at every meal. Eating foods in strict proportions makes you feel better and reduces future disease processes from entering your body.

How it works

The Zone diet claims to be different from other diet plans out there because it doesn’t advocate one food group over the others. Diets that limit or eliminate a particular food group miss the point of proper body nutrition. The human body needs all types of foods to survive and thrive.

The protein that you eat, for instance, is lean. Fish is filled with omega-3 fatty acids. Lean beef contains mineral needed in the body. Chicken and pork are lower fat and caloric options over beef and fatty fish.

The main battle with most diets rages on in the carbohydrate section. Some diets are low-fat while others say to limit carbohydrates severely. The Zone diet chooses between high and low glycemic carbohydrates.

The glycemic index is a system for rating carbohydrates based on how they raise the blood sugar. Insulin and glucagon are two critical hormones regulated by the body that play a role in diabetes. Carbohydrates with a low glycemic number cause glucagon to be secreted which in turn affects the use of stored carbohydrates (fat) for slow, steady energy consumption by the body. Your body burns fat but doesn’t raise the blood sugar, which leaves you feeling full longer.

Carbohydrates with high glycemic numbers have the opposite effect. They raise the blood sugar levels quickly causing a spike or “sugar high.” More insulin is produced and makes its way into the bloodstream to regulate your blood sugar. When the blood sugar plummets, you feel hungry for more sugar. It’s a vicious cycle that can leave you fat.

By observing your carbohydrate choices and food group ratios, your body can return to optimum health according to Dr. Sears. The diet lists what carbohydrates can be eaten along with what foods to avoid totally. People who are pre-diabetic or overweight will see the weight drop off and their diabetic condition reversed by following this diet.

The Zone diet has survived the test of time. But, is it for everyone? According to Dr. Sears it should be used by everyone who wants to increase their health, life expectancy and athletic performance.