-- Just in time to coincide with any healthy eating resolutions, U.S. News & World Report has named the DASH diet as the best for shedding excess pounds.
The DASH diet again nabbed the top spot because of its easy-to-follow guidelines, overall healthy options and success rate of dieters. The diet, which emphasizes healthy grains, veggies and lean meat, was designed to help people lower their blood pressure.
"Our rankings put hard numbers on the belief that no one diet is ideal for everybody, but the best food plans overall are sustainable," Angela Haupt, senior health editor at U.S. News, said in a statement. "Besides the rankings and data, each diet has a detailed profile that includes how it works, evidence that supports or refutes its claims and a nutritional snapshot – tools that, along with the advice of a physician or nutritionist, can help consumers invest in diets that suit their lifestyles and further their health and wellness goals."
The newly added MIND diet focuses on foods that keep the brain healthy.
"Brain healthy" foods include "green leafy vegetables, nuts, berries, beans, whole grains, fish, poultry, olive oil and wine," according to U.S. News and World Report. "MIND adherents avoid foods from the five unhealthy groups: red meats, butter and stick margarine, cheeses, pastries and sweets, and fried or fast food."
The TLC diet was designed to help patients cut cholesterol. TLC dieters make sure that no more than 7 percent of their daily calories come from saturated fat (aka high-fat dairy and fatty meats). TLC adherents consume 200 milligrams of dietary cholesterol a day, or the amount in about 2 ounces of cheese.
Dr. Jennifer Ashton, ABC News' senior medical contributor, said being able to adhere to a diet is about finding a way of living and eating that works for each person.
"Many diets can work because they are low cal," Ashton explained. "The key is finding a way of eating that has the three S's: safe, simple and sustainable."