There are countless weight-loss diet plans out there, and it can be overwhelming trying to figure out which one will work best for you. The truth is that the right weight-loss diet plan will work best for you if it’s one that you’re willing to stick with in the long term, so it’s worth evaluating your options before you begin. Here are 10 of the most popular and effective weight-loss diets on the market today, ranked from worst to best according to their effectiveness as measured by how long people are able to stick with them before quitting.
This low-calorie diet claims to promote weight loss by forcing you to eat two pre-packaged meals per day, made with shelf-stable ingredients. The program provides guidelines for how many calories you should consume daily and suggests a meal plan based on a 2,000 calorie intake per day. While there are complaints that Nutrisystem can be expensive (fresh produce is not included), few dieters have complained about its effectiveness in helping them lose weight and keep it off.
2) Jenny Craig
Jenny Craig is best for dieters who want prepackaged foods. The company delivers meals and snacks to your home, or you can order them online. Meals are low in calories but provide high nutrition and good portions for weight loss. Jenny Craig has been around for more than 30 years and has one of the highest success rates among popular weight loss programs today. It works equally well for men and women who want a variety of preselected food without too much effort.
Last year’s winner of our annual America’s Best Diet rankings, Equinox’s program is built on a foundation of healthy meals and plenty of whole grains. The regimen also has a big focus on strength training—think bodyweight exercises like pullups and pushups mixed with kettlebell swings and TRX suspension training.
4) Weight Watchers
While there’s been no shortage of recent research into why Weight Watchers works so well for some people—mostly pointing to social and peer support, as well as a more forgiving approach to calories—the bottom line is that it just works. Of all people who try to lose weight in their lifetime, those on a diet from Weight Watchers are more likely to be successful than those on any other plan.
5) HCG Diet Plan
The HCG diet plan is a weight loss plan which restricts calories. The idea behind it is that by following a 500 calorie per day diet for 3 days out of every week, your body will still lose weight but not feel hungry because it isn’t deprived of any food. On these days you also inject HCG hormone drops into your body. This helps reduce cravings and it stimulates fat burning while avoiding muscle loss. This diet program can be done in combination with exercise to boost your results.
6) Juice Fasting
Juice Fasting – The Master Cleanse, or Lemonade Diet as it’s often called, is a liquid diet that supposedly helps you lose weight quickly. It involves giving up solid food and consuming only a lemon juice and maple syrup beverage made by blending water with lemon juice (no sugar) and maple syrup. Proponents of the diet say its combination of protein, vitamins, minerals and natural sugars boost metabolism while ridding your body of toxins.
7) Atkins Diet
The Atkins Diet is a low-carb diet. The diet is divided into four phases. The first phase of dieting allows you to eat low carbohydrates for two weeks. This phase is only intended to get your body accustomed to not having glucose so that it can burn fat more easily later on. Once you’ve gotten through those two weeks, you can increase your carbohydrate intake and eat three meals a day instead of one or two, but only until you hit your desired weight loss goal.
8) Medifast Diet
The Medifast diet is a medically based system that helps you lose weight quickly. With an average weight loss of 2 to 3 pounds per week, you’ll be able to hit your target weight in no time. If you have a health condition or are on medication and want to lose weight while maintaining optimal health, then consider trying out Medifast. The meals are healthy and affordable, but watch out for that 500-calorie rule—it can be difficult to stick with it long term.
9) South Beach Diet
You’ve probably heard of it. South Beach comes in as number one on our list for several reasons: 1) It requires no special foods or preplanned meals; 2) it emphasizes smart eating habits and a healthy lifestyle instead of an all-or-nothing approach; 3) it promotes exercise.
10) Zone Diet
These days it seems like a new diet is released every week. One of these diets in particular—the Zone Diet—has seen quite a bit of success. The Zone Diet focuses on proteins, fats and carbohydrates; all three are needed to keep your body running smoothly and efficiently.