Fad diets can be dangerous for our health. In fact, in some cases, they can result in irreversible damage to our bodily organs.
Most of us try out different types of diets to lose weight quickly. However, not every diet promises a beneficial result. In this post, we will highlight a few popular diets that are nothing but a recipe for disaster. We will also offer some beneficial tips to help you adopt a healthy lifestyle and adopt good eating habits.
First, let’s check out how we can identify a fad diet.
Signs to Identify a Fad Diet
Never believe a nutritionist or a doctor who claims to offer a miraculous solution to all your weight loss problems. Here are some signs to check for when trying out a weight loss program.
- Claims of easy and fast weight loss, within days
- Elimination of food groups
- Requires spending hundreds of dollars for buying dietary supplements that are labeled as weight loss aids, fat burners, and miracle portions
- Eliminates the need to exercise
Why is Combining or Eliminating Food Groups an Unhealthy Practice?
As mentioned above, most fad diets require you to avoid certain food groups or restrict their intake to a dangerous level. Today’s most fad diets create the belief that humans should not eat certain foods because they cause more harm than good to the body, leading to weight gain.
However, there is no scientific evidence that supports this claim. Some health conditions require you to reduce certain foods’ intake due to metabolic disorders or allergies, such as Celiac disease. But, no research concludes eliminating food groups to maintain a healthy weight.
Likewise, some fad diets allow you to combine certain food groups. Advocates of these diets believe that the human body fails to digest carbs while it digests fats or proteins. Again, there is no scientific theory that supports this claim. Our digestive system may use special enzymes to digest certain foods but never cancel each other out.
Say No to Fat-Burner Products
Never become a victim of any fad diet that claims to burn fat within days. Most products that come with these claims have a disclaimer in tiny letters on their label, saying ‘results may vary.’
These diets’ whole idea is to lure customers into buying these miracle products or fat-burner supplements, without guaranteeing any definite results.
Fad Diets you Should Avoid
Now that you know how to spot a fad diet let’s review a few of the most popular diets and weight loss programs that are becoming increasingly popular among people of all ages.
The Whole-30 is a thirty-day weight loss program that allows you to consume unhealthy amounts of grass-fed beef or chicken, organic vegetables, and fresh fruits. You can also eat healthy fats like nuts and avocados when you are following this diet.
While consuming organic meat and vegetables seems like a great idea, the diet excludes many important foods such as beans, sugars, legumes, dairy, soy, and grains. In addition to that, if you slip just one day, you will have to start all over again.
The whole problem with Whole 30 is that it is impossible to follow and eliminates critical nutrients. People who follow this diet are more likely to cheat and give in to emotional eating than other diets. Considering the unrealistic expectations of this diet, we can safely conclude it as a fad diet.
As the name suggests, this diet encourages you to consume more meat and no vegetables. This diet is extremely rich in saturated fat, which can harm heart health and increase cholesterol levels. The carnivore diet also includes cheese and eggs that can wreak havoc on our digestive system when consumed in excess.
Since this diet leaves out important food nutrients such as minerals and vitamins, we get out vegetables, and the fad diet can leave permanent damages to our health.
It seems the whole world is talking about the Keto diet. The low-carb and high-fat diet has resulted in hundreds of successful weight loss stories. Most people love following this diet because it has plenty of cheese, fibrous vegetables, oils, seeds, eggs, meats, fish, and even butter.
However, medical scientists recommend avoiding the Keto diet because the low-carb intake can lead to a drop in your blood sugar levels. Since you can’t eat potatoes, pasta, bread, sugar, flour, alcoholic drinks, and fruit on this diet, you miss several important nutrients.
Other drawbacks of the diet, including painful symptoms such as muscle fatigue, flu-like symptoms or the keto-flu, and brain fog. Advocates of this diet claim that following the Keto diet turns your body into a fat-burning machine. Once the body enters starvation mode or ketosis, you begin to lose muscle along with fat. That’s dangerous for individuals how to have liver or kidney issues.
While the Atkins diet has been around for some time, the low-carb diet is still a dangerous way to lose weight. The Atkins diet encourages you to consume meat, cheese, and eggs but restricts carbohydrate sources such as pasta, bread, milk, sugar, fruits, vegetables, and milk. Much like the Keto diet, Atkins pushes your body into the ketosis mode to burn fat.
Like other fad diets, you can shed pounds quickly while following this diet. However, there are medical concerns related to this diet. The high-protein diet is different from the carnivore diet but can damage the cholesterol levels and kidney function. The diet also poses risks of cancers, heart diseases, and osteoporosis.
This diet is a variation of the Paleo diet. In the Pegan diet, you eat lots of vegetables and fruits, along with nuts and seeds, a few types of grains and beans, along a small amount of meat. While the diet encourages you to consume healthy foods, restricting certain foods such as dairy can make it hard to maintain. The plant-based diet can be hard to follow, and not everyone can access organic meat and farm-fresh vegetables.
Tips to Maintain a Healthy Weight Naturally
Instead of following a fad diet, the best way to lose weight naturally is to adopt healthy eating patterns. Here are a few tips to help you lose weight and attain a fit body over time without using any toxic miracle product.
- Do not eliminate any food group from your diet. Make sure you consume healthy amounts of meat, vegetables, fruits, legumes, grains, beans, and dairy.
- Avoid consuming processed foods, including cereals and white bread. Instead, use whole grains.
- Reduce the consumption of caloric beverages
- Drink plenty of water
- Add fish, poultry, and lean meats into your diet but pay attention to portion sizes.
- Get good amounts of calcium by consuming low-fat dairy products, calcium-rich foods, or supplements.
- Switch to olive oil or canola oil for cooking.
- Never skip breakfast. People who eat breakfast regularly can easily maintain a healthy weight.
- Start every meal with a small bowl of salad or soup.
- Maintain a food journal to keep track of the foods you eat less or more
What Is the Best Way to Lose Weight?
Get the word ‘diet’ out of your system. Instead of following a weight loss program or a fad diet, focus on adopting healthy eating habits and including nutrient-dense foods in your diet. There is no reason why you should eliminate certain food groups of foods from your diet unless you are allergic to certain ingredients.
Do not rush to get expected results. When you lose weight naturally and healthily, you can easily lose patience because there are no instant results. However, eating the right way is the only way to lose weight without affecting your important body organs such as the liver or kidney.
Don’t feel guilty if you have a cheat meal once a week. Dieticians and nutritionists recommend enjoying sugar treats or even your favorite burger with fries if you keep it to just one day. Cheat days or cheat meals serve as a great mechanism against emotional or binge-eating.
Whenever you are eating, practice mindful eating by focusing on every bite—the benefits of mindful eating for attaining a healthy and fit body and innumerable. Mindful eating allows you to enjoy the aroma, the texture, and the taste of all the ingredients present in your meal. Hence, you gratify your senses and stop eating as soon as you are full.
Most people are guilty of following a fad diet or celebrity diet as soon as they start seeing their adverts on TV or social media. In reality, no miracle diet can instantly transform your bulging body into a beach body.
Before you follow any diet, remember to touch with your doctor or nutritionist to know if they have any adverse effects. Your doctor can evaluate your health condition and recommend any modifications. However, the best way to lose weight the healthy and natural way is to start living an active life and adding more nutrients to your everyday diet.