New Year’s Diet? Think Twice


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Fireworks and confetti mark the start of 2022 over New York City’s Times Square celebration.

Grace McGinness, Sports Editor

With January of the new year comes many things: colder weather, a new calendar and one question plaguing conversations- what’s your new year’s resolution?

This time of year it’s hard to go anywhere without seeing advertisements for new year’s sales prices at the local gyms or new meal-replacement shakes for the new year to finally start that diet you should probably get on.

Even without leaving the house these ads are hard to avoid; opening news apps, watching TV, downloading an app or glancing at a side-bar advertisement on any website can lead to even more inquiries about who the healthy new you is going to be this year.  

And even if these ads seem positive and motivating, which I’m sure they might be in moderation, they are absolutely not motivating when hundreds of diet plans, workout schedules and calorie-counting apps are being thrown at you every single time you do anything.  

A 2020 survey said that roughly 74 percent of the adult U.S. population set out to learn a resolution last year with 82 percent of those resolutions being health or self-improvement focused.  

Following this data, that means that around 145 million American adults set out to change something about their health or own self-image in 2020.  This leaves only 18 percent, or roughly 34 million U.S. adults making resolutions that aren’t focused around those two things.  

Most of these new-year’s-driven diet plans probably won’t even make it a couple of months, let alone through the whole year.  

According to a 2019 article from the New York Times, of the 45 million Americans who go on strict diets for the new year only five percent of all Americans who go on diets for the new year won’t be successful in their efforts.  

Furthermore, a study from the UCLA Department of Health Sciences found that if one of these seemingly crazy diet plans is followed, like the ones being advertised right around new year’s, any weight that has been lost will probably come back. 

But what does work?

The same UCLA study found that if strict diets and exercise plans don’t work, a simple push to be healthier will.  By simply saying you want to eat healthier for the new year rather than setting a specific daily calorie limit, you might be helping yourself in the long run. 

So before falling victim to one of the advertisements claiming they have the “perfect new diet to help you get a perfect body,” think twice about whether or not that diet really works just in case you end up as another statistic for a failed resolution.