Curves Diet: Pros and Cons
It is an ordinary phenomenon that everything new appearing on the market is being criticized. The criticism can be subjective and objective, it can contain some sound reasoning and scientifically-based facts or to be wide of the mark and far from scientific theories.
The Curves Diet in detail described in the book by Gary Heavin and Carol Colman Curves: Permanent Results without Permanent Dieting published in 2003 has certainly received its portion of positive and negative criticism. Let us together examine and find the rational core of the Curves Diet.
The points that are being mostly criticized:
- The claim of the author that calories don’t count as long as the dieter eats the right foods and cuts back on starchy and sugary carbohydrates. The nutritional specialists raise objections to this opinion stating that calorie intake is always important since any excess calories including protein assist in gaining weight. Furthermore the specialists challenge the fact that a dieter can consume 2,500 - 3,000 calories a day on the maintenance phase and lose weight. The calorie intake of 3,000 is too much for most women. To burn these calories a woman should exercise at least 2 hours a day otherwise she will gain weight;
- The Phases 1 and 2 of the diet plan are too low in calories especially in the calorie sensitive plan in which calorie intake makes up 1,200 calories a day. Limitation of calories and carbs leads to some vitamins and minerals deficiencies. The authors of the diet recommend consumption of some food supplements and vitamins but this is again a disputable issue whether, when and what quantities of food supplements are safe to be used;
- Regardless of the chosen eating plan the dieter has to do counting: either calories counting or grams of carbohydrates counting. Those who have never done this before will quickly find how tiresome and annoying it can be, for example when going out or visiting someone (the book on the diet should always be beside);
- Many dietitians criticize the statement of Gary Heavin that “a diet should be temporary and the dieter should be able to go off the diet when he or she reaches the desired weight”. The key principle to the long-term weight management is adopting of healthy eating plans and constant physical activity that become the way of life.
The points that are being praised:
- The diet teaches portion sizes and places an emphasis on the aspect that physical activity is as important in managing weight loss as a nutritional plan itself;
- A fitness program of the diet can be followed either at the Curves gym or at home (the book on the diet contains an elaborated plan of at-home workouts). The program is not complicated and can be used by women with different levels of physical preparation and at different ages. Moreover women with some diseases such as arthritis, diabetes may follow the program as well;
- Trained staff members at the Curves gyms offer support, give useful advice and provide encouragement during the whole process. Moreover women can find significant support among the other members of the gym who are having the same general goal. The workouts are short, time-saving but effective. Every single muscle is being trained;
- The diet plan offers a wide variety of foods, it limits intake of refined carbohydrates and sweets on the Phases 1 and 2, but no food groups are off-limits. Six small meals a day ensure that the dieter won’t have the feeling of hunger.
As we have seen the Curves Diet can be viewed both from positive and negative sides and have its benefits and successful results even if with a portion of sound negative criticism.