Fad Diets: Do They Really Work?


We have all heard of the numerous fad diets designed to supposedly make overweight individuals, well, lose their excess weight. These fad diets may or may not recommend the use of oral supplements and meal replacements although most will share an attribute – low levels of a certain substance. The most common of these fad diets are the low-carbs, low-fat and low-protein diets.

Reasons Why Not

Health experts generally do not recommend these so-called low diets because of their alarming health risks. It cannot be overemphasized that the body needs macronutrients to stay healthy but the above-mentioned fad diets severely restricts the body’s supply to one of said macronutrients.

For example, the low-carbs diet significantly limits the amount of carbohydrates in the daily diet. This results in lower energy levels because carbohydrates are necessary in energy production that, in turn, leads to lethargy, hunger pangs and an emaciated appearance when the diet is followed for a lengthy period of time.

Such side effects can also be experienced with the low-protein and low-fat diets albeit in varying degrees and duration. Keep in mind that fats, carbohydrates and proteins are called macronutrients for a reason – you will require large doses of these substances in comparison with the smaller doses of the micronutrients.

But severe macronutrient deprivation is not the only concern with these fad diets. You are also exposing yourself to the potentially harmful oral supplements that proponents of these diets may recommend. Your body will be tricked into thinking that it is not hungry and, thus, you will also suffer from calorie restriction.

With so little food feeding your cells, tissues and organs, you will go weaker every day. You will also grow thinner every day but what use is a thin body when it is unhealthy?

Steps to Avoid

You are well-advised to stay away from the above-mentioned fad diets for your own sake. But how can you do so? We suggest the following steps:

  • Look at the recommended meal plans, if there are any. If you see that the diet advocates low levels in any of the macronutrients, then you are better off looking for another diet plan. For example, if the diet calls for boycotting virtually all carbohydrate sources, then it may well be a low-carbs diet.
  • Look at the prints. You can almost immediately see the kind of diet within a few minutes of reading the resource materials. You can assume that the diet is anti-carbs, anti-protein or anti-fat, so to speak, from the way that the author talks about these macronutrients.
  • Look at the addendums of the diet plan. If it says that a weight loss oral supplement is part of the program, you can start having second thoughts although not all supplements are bad per se.

In the end, the best way to lose weight is to adopt a well-balanced diet where all the macronutrients and micronutrients are present in their healthy levels. Eat more fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean meats, fishes, nuts and seeds while also avoiding junk, salty, sweet and oily food items. Eat 6 small meals a day instead of 3 big ones.

You will soon realize that you can still enjoy good food while also gaining good ground on your war against the bulge.

1 Comment

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