Saturday, 6 June 2015

Half of BBC Good Food respondents have dieted

A survey of 2,633 BBC Good Food magazine readers found that one in two respondents had followed a diet during the past year. And of these, less than one in seven of had actually completed it.

The survey seems to suggest that there is a huge gap between expectations and the reality of sticking with a diet plan.

Participants were asked to describe their initial expectations and overall experience of their diet or healthy eating plan.

The three most popular words used to describe their initial expectations were:

  • effective (78%);
  • rewarding (45%); and 
  • easy (36%). 
In reality however, the majority of participants described their diet/ healthy eating plan as challenging (40%). 36% described it as effective and 31% difficult.

Some of the key findings include:

Of those that failed to see their plan through to the end, the most common reasons for doing so were:

  • A lack of will power (58%);
  • missing their favourite food and drink (26%); and 
  • the plan being difficult to fit around their daily routine (25%).
Other popular responses among the research sample were:

  • participants were hungry a lot of the time (20%);
  • the plan was too time consuming (13%); and 
  • the ingredients needed for the plan were too expensive (12%).
The most commonly cited diets and healthy eating plans followed by respondents were:

  • the low-fat (51%);
  • low calorie/community diet plans (38%); and 
  • intermittent fasting diets (20%).
Some 72% of the survey participants agree that there is too much contradictory information and advice on diets and healthy eating.

Research participants highlighted that they would tend to choose one diet/healthy eating plan over another if it:
  • does not impact too greatly on their current lifestyle (48%);
  • is easy to follow (47%); and 
  • has a good range of foods on offer (35%).

BBC Good Food has a 7-day clean eating plan aimed at boosting your energy with a healthy and nourishing week-long plan to kick start your summer. It focuses on ‘clean’ eating, which means enjoying wholefoods in their most natural state and not having to suffer from hunger pangs.

According to Roxanne Fisher, BBC Good Food Health Editor:
“The research indicates the extent to which people are keen to adopt a healthy lifestyle, with 50% of us trying an eating plan in the past year - but there are also real challenges that come with this. There is a big gap between our expectations and our reality of what the experience will be. We have devised a healthy diet plan that focuses on delicious Good Food - seven days of fresh, nourishing meals that also taste great.”
The 7–Day diet plan features in the June issue of BBC Good Food Magazine and online at and includes 15 exclusive, nutritionally-analysed recipes, tips and tools for getting the most of the plan and expert advice for maintaining a healthy, ‘clean’ eating plan beyond the seven days. Those that are interested can sign up nutritionally balanced recipes and tips to make you feel great.


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