In nutrition, diet refers to the quantity of food ingested by an organism or individual. The amount of the food will be proportional to the metabolic rate of that body part or organ, the amount of calories, and the type of the food. One needs to be careful about the words that are used in a diet and what it actually implies. A diet may be a way of losing weight or may simply be a change in the existing eating habits. A diet can also refer to the consumption of food for the overall good of the body and mind.
For clarification, let us take the word diet literally. A diet is not something that an individual does on his own but rather it is a way of eating according to the advice and prescription of a doctor or nutritionist. An individual following a diet will generally decrease the amount of calorie intake (entry 1) by burning up some food (entry 2). However, this could be in a way that will reduce the intake of some beneficial nutrients such as vitamins, minerals and fiber.
There are many ways in which to use the word diet. Diet can be used in two different contexts namely, a diet which is voluntary or one which is required by law (entry 3). A voluntary diet can be defined as one in which an individual feels he is compelled to keep on eating a certain amount of food. On the other hand, a mandatory diet is one in which the individual feels that he has to eat as per the law or his inclinations.
If we look at the definition of diet from a medical point of view, we find that the verb diet means withholding something in consideration. So in the medical sense of the term, diet means withholding food. Therefore, dieting would mean to keep off or withhold dieting. When we use the word dieting, we imply that there are medical or dietary implications to diet. So if you want to lose weight or maintain your current weight than dieting would be the best way of going about it.
The other context in which dieting means a thing is when the term is used in reference to weight loss or management. In the context defined above, we find that the verb to diet means to reduce calories in a particular diet by reducing the total amount of food intake or to increase the consumption of food. In weight loss management, the idea is basically the same but the term is used differently. In this context, dieting means to control calories or fat levels in a particular diet. The objective of weight loss management is to reduce calories so that the person is safe from health problems related to fat or calorie deficiencies.
It is important to remember that dieting has both positive and negative implications. The positive implication is that it helps to keep health issues at bay. The negative implication is that one must watch one’s diet very closely and strictly adhere to prescribed rules, particularly when the diet is accompanied by regular exercise. This will help the person to lose weight and keep it off. Also remember that one should consult a dietician for advice on how to go about dieting.