Following a fad diet may sound like a good idea, but you’ll soon realise than it can be more dangerous than beneficial. Here are a few of the most popular fad diets that are actually bad for you:
High Protein Diets (low carb)
This type of diet brings the body into an abnormal metabolic state called ketosis.In the presence of ketosis, appetite is greatly reduced and this can lead to a further reduction of food intake. What is more, ketosis causes fluid loss and muscle depletion. The weight you are going to lose in the first stages of ketosis is mainly water weight, which may result in severe dehydration. The depletion of muscle will also lower your metabolism. Muscle burns more calories than body fat. The main symptoms of ketosis are exhaustion, nausea, irritability and bad breath. The intake of saturated fats and cholesterol may exceed the allowed limits, which may increase the risk of cardiovascular disease and some cancers. High protein diets can also lead to nutrient deficiencies, because they are usually low in fiber, vitamin D, thiamine, pantothenic acid, copper, magnesium, manganese, potassium and calcium.
Are these diets effective?
The short-term results (6 months of high-protein diet) have shown that people lose slightly more weight (due to increased water loss) in high-protein diets compared to diets that are low in fat. Long-term studies, however, show that most people who lose weight regain it. The long-term results (One year) show that the weight loss achieved with a high protein diet is very similar to that achieved with a diet low in fat.
Fasting leads to the rapid loss of weight and it can result in dehydration and may stress the liver and kidneys. Additionally, fasting for more than 2-3 days in a row may put you into starvation mode, especially if your body fat levels are already very low.
Diets based on a single food
The pineapple diet and soup are good examples of this type of diet. The basis of these diets is the belief that certain foods have the magical power to burn calories. These diets do cause weight loss, but not because they contain magical foods. The monotony of this type of diet simply causes you to restrict the intake of total calories. Due to the fact that these diets completely eliminate entire food groups, they may cause nutritional deficiencies.
Diets that don’t contain any type of fat are a real problem in the long term, because dietary fat is essential for survival. It contains vitamins and essential fatty acids, which allow the body to work properly. Women who eliminate fat from their diet often suffer from hormonal imbalances, fertility problems and dry skin and hair. Our body needs healthy fats to prevent heart disease and cancer.
So, how can you lose weight?
Any diet plan that creates a calorie deficit will lead to weight loss. You don’t have to follow dangerous diets that lack essential nutrients.