BBC's What's The Right Diet for You?

BBC's Horizon Special
Image credit: BBC
I'm sure many of you have watched or heard about this week's Horizon special on BBC (catch it on iPlayer  for the next month if you haven't seen it). The show sees medial and nutritional experts profiling 75 overweight people in order to figure out why they have struggled to lose weight and which dieting approach would tackle their individual causes best.

The participants were placed into three groups: The 'Constant Cravers', 'Emotional Eaters' and the 'Feasters'. Some of you will look at these categories and will know immediately which one you fall into. For me, I've long suspected that I'm an emotional eater (which is why a career in social work was so catastrophic to my health). For those of you who don't know which one you fall into, there's a handy test on the BBC website
Essentially, there are three diets being applied in this show to combat the core causes of each category. Broadly speaking, the diets advocated were low calorie for the emotional eaters, Low GI for the Feasters and Intermittent Fasting (IF) for the Constant Cravers while the core causes were genes of the Constant Cravers, the low levels of gut hormone GLP-1 in the Feasters and stress or emotional reasons behind the munching of the Emotional Eaters. I've created a handy table to summarise all of this:
What I liked so much about this program is that it highlights the fact that a type of diet cannot take a 'one size fits all' approach as there are many different reasons behind our difficulties in losing weight. 

In addition to taking the test on the BBC's website to find out which diet would suit you best, I recommend downloading the free eBook to find out more about the causes, the different diet plans and the science behind them. There's also recipes and general tips. 

Some of you may find out from the quiz that you are a combination of a two or three of the types. I was predominately an Emotional Eater at 45% but then I also scored 35% for Feaster and 20 for Constant Craver. In this situation it may be best to try to combine methods. For example, I seek group support for a controlled calorie diet via MyFitnessPal (this has helped me throughout periods of anxiety and depression) while reducing my sugar intake and increasing my protein, whole fats and fibre consumption so that I get fuller quicker and don't continue to feast. I find that I don't display any of the Constant Craver behaviours when I'm not in the office... this will be because I don't buy junk food and only have access to it at work so all hell breaks loose once the office biscuit tin is opened! 

I'd recommend anyone having a hard time keeping up with their New Years resolution to take the quiz, read the eBook and watch the program. It's a good source of facts and inspiration from the show's participants.  

1 comment

  1. This is really interesting - thanks for sharing! :)


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