BBC Health Diets

The BBC health program, ’ What’s The Right Diet For You?’  presented by Dr Chris van Tulleken and Prof Tanya Byron explains that obese people usually fall into one of three categories:

  1. Constant Cravers
  2. Feasters
  3. Emotional Eaters

Take the test to find out if you fit into one of these categories

BBC Health Diet

A group of obese people who wanted to lose weight were recruited to participate in a 12 week trial. Each volunteer was asked to fill in a questionnaire to identify into which category they best fitted.

Constant Cravers

Constant Cravers have a fault in their genes which results in their feeling hungry all the time. A very low calorie diet is advised with  restriction of calories on 2 days of the week. The focus should be on high protein foods especially from vegetables, lentils, beans and nuts. Three portions of protein (the size of a pack of cards) should be eaten per day and can be derived from fish (fresh or canned) twice a week, chicken without skin, beef, lamb or pork without fat, game birds, eggs, low fat cheese. Prepare fresh ingredients and avoid ready made or processed foods.


Feasters suffer from a faulty gut hormone that fails to tell them when they are full

The diet is a high protein low Glycaemic Index carbohydrates diet which is known to boost the feeling of fullness. Eating the food slowly will help to maintain the feeling of fullness for longer.

The key is to try to reduce the number of calories by eating bulkier foods rich in fibre such as fruit and vegetables and whole grains. Limit foods high in fat and sugar such as cakes, pastries and sugary drinks.

Emotional Eaters

Emotional Eaters turn to comfort food in response to stress.

Again a low calorie diet is recommended and dieters should be aware that they eat comfort food in times of stress. Change the types of comfort food to more healthy alternatives such as fruit, non sugary drinks, unprocessed nuts, low fat yoghurts etc.

Dieters are also encouraged to join support groups where they can share their concerns and exchange coping strategies in stressful situations. It is also suggested that a diary of their progress is kept to highlight the stressful times that trigger the need for comfort food.

Stress can be caused by boredom or loneliness and the diary will pinpoint times in the day when you are at your most vulnerable. Sharing the diary at group meetings can be helpful and other members will offer suggestions for coping.

BBC Health Advice

One good habit to bring into your day is regular exercise. Make it a habit like brushing your teeth and it will soon become an enjoyable part of the daily routine. Exercise has many benefits:

  1. Burns up calories
  2. Helps reduce fat
  3. Keeps joints working smoothly
  4. Reduces high blood pressure
  5. Keeps the blood flowing throughout the body which will keep blood vessels and capillaries in good order
  6. Releases endorphins in the brain which promote a feel-good factor
  7. Allows the mind a break from the stresses and strains of modern life
  8. Maintains a healthy heart

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