The Best And Worst Diets For 2020

By Dr. Dave Hnida

(CBS4) -The beginning of a new year tends to be the time for a lot of new starts… especially dropping some pounds. To help you along the way, there are a number of “official” diets to follow.

But just like everything, there are some that are really good, and some that are just plain awful.

A group of nutrition experts, 25 in all, ranked the most popular diets based on the following qualities:


Easy to follow, and maintain


Family friendliness


The results are published in US News and World Report’s 10th annual Best Diets Edition.

So here are the good, the bad, and the just plain ugly of diets for 2020:

  1. Mediterranean Diet– a simple plant-based diet with an emphasis on fruits, vegetables, olive oil, fish, and even red wine. Score 4.2/5
  2. DASH Diet– also simple plant-based diet with an emphasis on more fruits and veggies, low fat dairy, and low salt. It’s especially good at lowering blood pressure. 4.1/5
  3. (tie with #2)Flexitarian Diet– a heavy emphasis on fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, with occasional meat or fish. Noted to be very “family friendly.” 4.1/5
  4. WW or Weight Watchers- highest rank for overall weight loss and rapid weight loss. Good support system. 3.9/5
  5. (tie with #4) Mayo Clinic Diet– rated best for making healthy eating life-long 3.8/5
  6. (tie with #4) MIND Diet– a combo of DASH and Flexitarian. Aims to prevent mental sharpness. 3.8/5
  7. (tie with #4) Volumetrics– heart-healthy and a good diet for people with diabetes. 3.8/5
  8. TLC Diet                       3.7/5
  9. Nordic Diet                  3.6/5
  10. Ornish Diet                  3.6/5
  11. Vegetarian Diet           3.6/5
  12. Fertility Diet                3.5/5
  13. Jenny Craig                 3.5/5
  14. Asian Diet                    3.4/5
  15. Weil                              3.3/5
  16. Nutritarian Diet          3.3/5
  17. Vegan Diet                   3.2/5
  18. The Engine 2 Diet       3.1/5
  19. South Beach Diet        3.1/5
  20. Biggest Loser Diet     3.0/5
  21. Glycemic Index Diet   3.0/5
  22. Nutrasystem               3.0/5
  23. Zone Diet                    3.0/5
  24. Macrobiotic Diet        2.9/5
  25. Slim Fast                      2.9/5
  26. HMR Program            2.8/5
  27. Optavia                       2.6/5
  28. Alkaline Diet              2.5/5
  29. The Fast Diet              2.4/5
  30. Paleo Diet                  2.4/5
  31. Raw Foods Diet         2.3/5
  32. Adkins                        2.2/5
  33. Whole 30 Diet           2.1/5
  1. The Keto Diet– High fat, low carb. Considered unhealthy for most people, and can’t stay on it for more than the short-term. 2.0/5
  2. Dukan Diet– described by panel as “idiotic”. 1.9/5

For more info on the top 3 diets including recipes and other resources:

Dr. Dave Hnida is CBS4’s Medical Editor. He blogs about the latest studies and trends in the health world. Read his latest blog entries, check out his bio or follow him on Twitter @drdavehnida