A lot of us are suffering from pinched-pants syndrome after holiday indulgences. In the spirit of New Year’s service journalism, the Hungry Beast rates 10 popular diets for effectiveness. Hungry Beast staff combed through studies and scientific journals for data, and then reported on a number of factors: the percentage of people who dumped the diet before a year was up, percentage of BMI lost, and mean weight loss over a year.

It’s an interesting comparison, because even the diet rated most effective by the Hungry Beast, Volumetrics, resulted in an average weight loss of 17.4 pounds in a year. Seventeen lousy pounds, after a year of eating soup instead of cookies? Oy.

Next most effective were the American Heart Association’s low-fat diet, Atkins, the Mediterranean diet, and Weight Watchers. Hmm, I notice the Hollywood Cookie diet isn’t on here.

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