Best Weight-Loss Diets 2022

Diets come and go, luring people in with promises of the perfect body that is always just out of reach. Do what you want to eat! Weight is lost overnight! Dieters who have tried and failed to lose weight know that it is hard and that most diets don’t work. Some of them can even make you sick. And finding out the truth about dieting, let alone figuring out if certain plans live up to the hype, is hard enough to burn off a pound or two on its own.

Group of family members of different ages sitting around a table eating a home-cooked meal, talking, and taking it easy. This scene shows family life, healthy eating, meal time, and being together.

Best Diets 2022 sorts through all the claims to find the truth. U.S. News’ Best Diets, now in its 12th year, gives information about and ranks 40 diets on a number of factors, such as how healthy they are for your heart and how likely they are to help you lose weight.

Many of the diets, like WW (Weight Watchers), are well-known, while others, like the DASH (dietary approaches to stop hypertension) diet, should be. U.S. News editors and reporters spent months weeding out possible new diets to add to our list. They then used medical journals, government reports, and other sources to write in-depth profiles of those that made the cut.

Each profile explains how the diet works, checks to see if its claims are true or not, and looks for any possible health risks. It also shows what it’s really like to live on the diet, not just read about it.

Best Diets Rankings:

A group of 27 nationally known experts in diet, nutrition, obesity, food psychology, diabetes, and heart disease looked at our profiles, added their own research, and rated each diet in seven categories:

  • How easy it is to understand.
  • Its ability to help people lose weight in the short term.
  • Its ability to help people lose weight in the long run.
  • Its full range of nutrients.
  • How safe it is.
  • How it could help prevent and control diabetes.
  • How it could help prevent and treat heart disease.

We also asked the panellists to tell us what they liked or didn’t like about each diet and to give tips that someone who was thinking about trying a certain diet should know.

After giving each diet a thorough look, we turned the experts’ ratings into scores and stars from 5 (the best) to 1 (the worst) (lowest).

Then, we took those scores and made nine lists of the best diets, which are as follows:

  • Best Diets Overall adds up the scores of the panellists in all seven categories. Not all categories had the same amount of weight. The long-term weight loss ratings were given twice as much weight as the short-term ones. Why? After the holidays or as summer approaches, quick results are important, but the real test of a diet is whether or not it can be kept up for years. This is especially true for people who are overweight or obese; losing as little as 5% of body weight can cut the risk of long-term illnesses like diabetes and heart disease by a lot. Safety was counted twice, because no diet should be harmful.
  • Best Diet Programs uses the same method to rank 15 structured diet programmes that charge a fee to join, encourage the use of branded food or nutritional products, and have other ways to help people who are using the programme, such as apps or social groups.
  • Best Weight-Loss Diets was made by putting equal weight on both short-term and long-term weight loss ratings. Some people want to lose weight quickly, while others want to lose weight slowly and steadily so they can keep it off for a long time. With equal weighting, both goals are seen as important.
  • Best Diabetes Diets is based on averaged diabetes ratings.
  • The average heart-health ratings are used in Best Heart-Healthy Diets.
  • Best Diets for Healthy Eating combines ratings for nutrition and safety, giving safety twice as much weight as nutrition. A healthy diet should have enough calories and not be missing important nutrients or whole food groups.
  • “Easiest Diets to Follow” is an average of what the panellists thought about each diet’s taste, how easy it was to get used to at first, how well it kept dieters from feeling hungry, and if it had any special rules.
  • Best Plant-Based Diets uses the same method as Best Diets Overall to rank 12 diets that focus on plant-based foods that have been processed as little as possible.
  • Best Fast Weight-Loss Diets is based on ratings of weight loss over a short period of time.

In all nine lists, scores are rounded to the nearest whole number, and diets with the same scores are listed in alphabetical order.

Category Ratings:

Along with the rankings, ratings from 1 to 5 stars are shown for each diet in each of the seven categories on each profile page.

So there wouldn’t be any bias, each panellist disclosed clear or obvious conflicts of interest, such as a paid consulting relationship with a company that sells a certain diet. When this happened, panellists didn’t give the diet a score. U.S. News chose the most popular version of diet programmes that offer different paths that may be geared toward certain groups, like pregnant women or people with diabetes.

Early on, we had to deal with a tough problem. Experts needed more than labels like “short-term weight loss” and “health risk,” which can mean different things to different researchers, in order to rate the diets. What should be the standard for judging how healthy something is? What are some health risks?

With the help of the panellists and other experts, we came up with the following criteria for rating the diets:

  • Short-term weight loss: Based on the evidence, the likelihood of losing a lot of weight in the first 12 months (5 = very effective, 4 = very effective, 3 = somewhat effective, 2 = not very effective, 1 = not effective).
  • Long-term weight loss: Based on the evidence, the likelihood of keeping off a lot of weight for two years or more (5 = very effective, 4 = very effective, 3 = somewhat effective, 2 = not very effective, 1 = not effective).
  • Diabetes: How well it works to prevent diabetes or keep diabetics healthy (5 = very effective, 4 = very effective, 3 = somewhat effective, 2 = not very effective, 1 = not at all effective).
  • Heart: How well it prevents heart disease and helps heart patients lower their risk of getting it (5 = very effective, 4 = very effective, 3 = somewhat effective, 2 = not very effective, 1 = not at all effective).
  • Ease of compliance: Based on initial adjustment, satiety (a feeling of fullness that makes you stop eating), taste appeal, and special needs (5 = very easy, 4 = easy, 3 = easy, 2 = hard, 1 = very hard).
  • Nutritional completeness: Based on conformity with the federal government’s 2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, a widely accepted nutrition benchmark (5 = extremely complete, 4 = very complete, 3 = moderately complete, 2 = somewhat complete, 1 = extremely incomplete).
  • Health risks, such as being undernourished, having concerns about certain nutrients, losing weight too quickly, not being safe for certain people or conditions, etc. (5 = very safe, 4 = very safe, 3 = moderately safe, 2 = somewhat unsafe, 1 = very unsafe).

We couldn’t give points for the cost of a plan or how much exercise we did. Even dieters who buy prepackaged meals from diet programmes still have to shop for some food. A dieter’s total cost will depend a lot on their shopping habits and preferences, as well as how often they eat out.

Some diets pay a lot of attention to exercise, while others just talk about it, but food is still the main focus of a diet. How much and how often you work out is a lifestyle choice that goes beyond what you eat.

Where does Best Diets go from here? We want to look at more eating plans and give dieters a way to put in their own preferences and needs so they can find the diets that are most likely to work for them. Diets are never the same for everyone.

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