Losing weight is challenging. It requires dedication, motivation, and intense self-control. All too often, we look for ways to cheat the system—ways to lose weight quickly and with as little effort as possible.
The majority of fad diets are unhealthy, even dangerous. But we continue to try them because they entice us with drastic results.
When it comes to losing weight in a safe, healthy way, a good rule of thumb is that if it seems too good to be true, it probably is. Here are five diets you should avoid.
1. THE TAPEWORM DIET
Although it seems absurd, this diet has supposedly been around since the early 1900s.
People desperate for significant weight loss results would ingest pills to release tapeworms into their intestines. The tapeworms would then eat the food inside the dieter’s body until he or she reached the goal weight. At that time, dieters would rid the tapeworm with an anti-parasite pill.
We don’t need to tell you how dangerous this is. Tapeworms cause myriad of health problems, including:
- and digestive issues
2. THE HOLLYWOOD DIET
Any diet that consists of surviving on minimal calories for more than a day or two is extremely dangerous. Claiming to help you lose two to nine pounds in 24 hours, this diet does exactly that.
Participants eat only the small selection of shakes and cookies available while following this regimen. Nutritionists warn that this diet puts your body into starvation mode, meaning most of the weight lost is water weight, not actual fat. It can also lead to:
- and constipation
3. THE BABY FOOD DIET
Certain celebrities sing the praises of this fad. They claim that eating pureed baby food for breakfast and lunch, then a low-calorie dinner in the evening is the best way to lose extra pounds. After all, babies survive just fine on it, right?
While the food itself isn’t inherently dangerous (as in, it’s free of additives and chemicals), the problems again surface as a result of attempting to live off such an extremely low amount of calories.
4. THE K-E DIET
Commonly known as the Feeding-Tube Diet, this recent fad is one of the most extreme weight loss measures we’ve seen. Participants are “fed” a low-calorie, protein and fat-rich solution via a tube inserted into their noses.
Health experts report that this method is no more effective than reducing your caloric intake of regular foods. It also comes complete with dangerous side effects, like:
- kidney stones
- and constipation
5. THE MASTER CLEANSE
While some nutritionists claim that an occasional day or two-long fast is a great way to detox our bodies, most agree that it should never be done as a method of weight loss.
The Master Cleanse is a fast during which you avoid all foods and only drink a mixture consisting of water, lemon juice, cayenne pepper, and maple syrup for a few days.
You may lose some water weight initially, but experts say it’s only temporary. This is because such low-calorie diets lead to muscle mass loss and a decrease in metabolism.
Forget the fad diets! When you’re ready to lose weight the healthy way, call the fitness pros at Amarillo Town Club. We have fun group fitness classes, personal training, state-of-the-art equipment, pools and more.