Losing weight can be tough, especially if you've been stuck in a bad routine for a while. Many people will look for quick fixes that can help them get back into shape for the Summer or a special event. These 'fad diets' will tend to make you cut out a certain food group, eat only after a certain time, or barely eat at all. The fact is, these diets may work for a little while (if at all), but they could be doing you some serious harm for the future. Here are 5 fad diets you really need to avoid, if you want to healthily lose weight.
1. The Dukan
Wow, look at the results people have had on the Dukan! They look so incredibly skinny, even though they were verging on obese before. Stop. Look again. They make look skinny but they also look incredibly unhealthy. Any diet which takes away vital food groups such as carbohydrates is not healthy at all, however much they try to convince you otherwise. Sticking to a healthy balance of all the food groups will have much more of a long term effect and will ensure you look as good as you feel. Instead of removing carbs altogether, swap them for healthier options and smaller portions. Whole wheat pasta, brown bread and brown rice are much better for you than their white counterparts.
2. The Baby Food Diet
Mashed up carrots, peas and ham doesn't exactly sound very appetising, nor will your body think so. This bizarre diet tells you to replace breakfast and lunch with around 14 jars of baby food, then to have a low calorie dinner in the evening. A diet like this does not contain the right amount of vitamins and nutrients that we need as adults, which is why baby food is for babies! Also, when you chew, your body recognises that you're eating and will begin to feel full up when it should. Without the chewing sensation you will constantly feel hungry, lethargic and fed up!
3. Fasting Diets
There are plenty of them out there; the 5:2, the QOD and even one aptly named 'The Fasting Diet', but are they any good for weight loss? Definitely not! When your body is hungry it begins to store fat in case you'll never eat again (clever body). What will happen is that your body will take the food you do eventually eat (every other day, in the evening, whenever you're told to eat) and turn it into fat. Although you may seem a short term weight loss from starving yourself, your body will soon pile it all back on and more!
4. One Food Diets
The cabbage soup diet, the leek diet, the cookie diet, the grapefruit diet, there are a lot of diets which concentrate on you eating just one food for most of the week, with several planned meals to go with them. Not only will you get fed up of a diet like this very quickly, but it can also lead to some serious health problems. Everything should be eaten in moderation and that goes for anything, even if it is seemingly very healthy. Too much of one thing can have seriously adverse effects to your body and you could even end up in hospital.
5. Pills and Potions
There seem to be adverts for various pills, supplements, drinks and potions that all have miraculous weight loss results. These adverts tend to come with a Photoshopped image of someone who has lost a lot of weight in a very short period of time. The worst offenders are Raspberry Ketones, African Mango and Green Coffee Bean Extract. You will normally be given a 'free trial' of the product and then end up paying a fortune for the next few months worth (which they take directly off of your card, so be careful). Any weight loss supplement that has to advertise in that way clearly doesn't work, or doctors would be handing it out to everyone who was overweight!
So, what can you do to lose weight? Avoid the fad diets and put together your own healthy eating plan! There are plenty of websites that can help you put together a healthy meal plan and even create a shopping list for you. Make sure you're getting daily exercise and you'll soon see the pounds dropping off of you, in the right way.
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Updated: April 24, 2018 CET
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