U.S. News Just Ranked the Best (and Worst) Diets for 2015

U.S. News Just Ranked the Best (and Worst) Diets for 2015

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U.S. News has just issued its list of the best (and worst) diets for 2015. A panel of health experts surveyed many of the most popular diets, from eating plans you would use independently to group programs. In order to get a top rating, the diet had to meet the panel’s strict criteria. It had to be easy to follow, high in nutrition, safe, and effective in supporting weight loss and preventing heart disease and diabetes. Here are the top five winners:

1. The DASH Diet:

DASH was developed by The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), one of the National Institutes for Health, specifically to combat high blood pressure. However, more and more Americans are adapting DASH as a full-time eating plan. Although there are some online sites that offer support, this diet was designed to be used on an individual basis. The U.S. News experts ranked it at the head of the class.

2. Therapeutic Lifestyle Changes:

Therapeutic Lifestyle Changes, or TLC, was also created by the National Institutes of Health, and one expert described it as a “very healthful, complete, safe diet.” It also supports heart health, but like DASH, it is an individual plan.

3. Mayo Clinic Diet:

The Mayo Clinic designed this diet with the goal of making healthy eating a lifetime habit. It got high marks for nutrition and safety, and as a tool against diabetes. The premise is that you will lose 6 to 10 pounds in the first 2 weeks, then a pound or two weekly until you reach your goal.

4. Mediterranean Diet:

The Mediterranean Diet emphasizes fruits and vegetables, as well as olive oil and fish. Experts agreed it is a sensible, healthy approach to eating that most diners can enjoy. It is designed to help you take off extra weight while supporting overall health.

5. Weight Watchers:

The expert panel agreed Weight Watchers is the best of the commercial diet plans, in terms of both short-term and long-term weight loss. It is also very easy to follow and nutritionally safe. The group support is a big plus, as are the inclusion of lots of fruits and vegetables and the opportunity for occasional treats.

Of the 35 diet plans including in the U.S. News rankings, the worst were:

27. Medifast
28. (Tie) The Acid Alkaline Diet and The Supercharged Hormone Diet
30. (Tie) The Fast Diet
32. (Tie) The Raw Food Diet and The Atkins Diet
34. (Tie) The Paleo Diet and The Dukan Diet

The diets at the bottom were poorly ranked for a variety of reasons, including poor scientific research, safety concerns, and likelihood most people would not be able to follow them for the long term.

  • Pauls1

    There is only one diet that count for anything. That is actually eating sensibly and never departing from healthy living. If you can’t do this, you deserve to be FAT.

    • Denise Barber Prince

      I love how this contributes to the conversation…

    • Thisoldspouse

      Problem is, the definitions of “sensible eating” and “healthy living” vary widely amoung people. I know people who eat all kinds of processed foods and they think they’re eating healthy.

  • RightMinded24

    DASH stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension. Thanks for not including that information on the number 1 rated diet.

  • Thisoldspouse

    I wonder where South Beach falls on this list.

  • Eileen

    Since when is US News considered literate in rating diets?

  • Kinsey Barnard

    The”Best” diet is the one you put together using your own common sense. For example: I have never drunk milk for the reasons out lined in the Paleo diet. I use other dairy products sparingly. Once, the “experts” told us to avoid eating eggs. I never believed it. It just didn’t make sense. Now they love eggs. Once coconut oil was considered only slightly less toxic than plutonium, now it’s a miracle food. I use coconut oil for cooking it cooks cleaner and smells lovely. I’m sixty six. Never seen the inside of a hospital accept to visit friend and look at my photography. I take no medications. I have developed my own diet using what I find useful in the various plans. For me the secret has been high protein, low carbs and all things in moderation. Listen to your body it will tell you what’s right for you. And, try something really radical. Try doing your own thinking.

    • Kinsey Barnard

      I forgot to mention; keep processed foods to an absolute minimum.

      • jim morency

        That is the biggest secret of all. Few processed foods, no crap soda and no fast food. I am 59, haven’t gained a pound since i was 17. just shop the perimeter of the store. that is where the meats, veggies, fruits, eggs and dairy are, most everything else in the store is junk.