Each year after January 1st rolls around, tons of people scour the internet searching for the fastest —and, sometimes, unproven and unhealthy—methods to lose weight. Many fad diet marketers promise fast results using crazy solutions, minimal research supporting their promises, and very little effort required to reach the proposed outcomes. Some of them even promise whopping weight losses of up to 10 pounds in as little as one week!
From bingeing on junk foods to eating no food at all, these marketers are becoming increasingly creative and desperate in their attempts to sell new weight loss fads. Plus, their advertisements are further strengthened when die-hard advocates of these plans offer their own success stories and share recommendations to get even better results. A number of these diets target individuals who may currently have a negative self-image, guaranteeing them that within a week or less they will be on the path of having the body of their dreams. Before attempting any new diet adventure, research your options to understand what this diet is actually about and whether it’s effective and safe for you personally.
Anybody that has ever attempted to slim down recognizes that maintaining a healthy diet and working out takes incredible effort. Clean eating, moderate activity throughout the week and adequate water are some great ways of getting starting on a healthy eating plan. However, lots of people have developed the habit of trying out some of the worst plans simply to lose weight as fast as possible and minimize any interruption in their lives while doing so. There are tons of dietary fads available to count and new ones hit the market every couple of weeks. Here’s a list of probably the most crazy and outrageous ones.
10. Weight Loss Sunglasses
A few years back, a new diet fad emerged out of Japan requiring that dieters wear blue-tinted shades during meals. Apparently, the aim of these special sunglasses is to make food less desirable to the eater. Since very few foods from nature are blue, humans have instinctively evolved towards viewing these colored foods as unhealthy or potentially dangerous. Some even declare that going only as far as using a blue plate during meals will minimize appetite. While the argument may seem strong, it’s difficult to envision always wearing blue-tinted glasses everywhere you go. Also, what about the smell of the food? A very hungry person will have trouble ignoring the scent of a slice of cheesy pizza, even if it is uncommonly blue!
9. The Sleeping Beauty Diet
Another dietary plan found on the web endorses more sleep in order to slim down. Now, for some, this may not be very surprising as health professionals have long since spouted the benefits of adequate sleep in overall weight loss as nightly z’s allow the body to regulate the appropriate hormones that induce healthy weight loss among other great advantages. However, this particular plan suggests that its followers get much more sleep than the recommended 7 to 9 hours per day. This plan requires a person to sleep 20 hours a day, for days at a time! Not only is this not feasible for most people, but the plan is based on the idea that if you’re sleeping, you’re not eating.
8. The Baby Food Diet
This diet trend popped on the scene within the past few years and involves eating jarfuls of baby food in an effort to lighten your figure. The plan suggests that basically any type of baby food is acceptable. This leaves dieters with options of fruits, veggies, and some types of meats like turkey, chicken, and beef. However, there are some elements of the food pyramid that are left completely out of these options such as legumes and grains. Researchers state that followers of this fad may not be getting the full spectrum of nutritional requirements and consuming too few calories.
7. The Cabbage Soup Diet
Promising an astounding 10 pound weight loss in just one week, the cabbage soup diet is yet another short term trend that has pulled in many followers. The eating plan has no restrictions on calories, carbohydrates, or any specific requirements for exercise which seems like a dream to most people who hate the gym. The trick? Sustain a 7-day meal plan made up entirely of cabbage soup recipes. This diet may be healthy overall, but medical professionals frown on any plan that does not involve a well-balanced diet with variety. It simply is not conceivable to maintain this plan over the long-term.
6. The Twinkie Diet
A baker developed the popular Twinkies snack cake nearly a century ago in the 1930s; and even this well-loved dessert has fallen prey to the weight loss industries schemes. Although the origin of this particular fad is not quite clear, it is not surprising that it is just that—a fad. This plan operates around the premise that if a person splurges on anything, they will eventually tire of it and eat nothing instead. Each Twinkie cake has about 150 calories, so, a person could eat as many as 10 in one day and only have consumed 1,500 calories. This might sound appetizing to those with a sweet tooth, but this processed cake doesn’t offer much in terms of nutrients.
5. The Tongue Patch Diet
One particularly dangerous plan on the list calls for an individual to have a plastic mesh covering stitched onto the tongue by a plastic surgeon. This route is certainly expensive at about $2,000 per procedure, but that’s not the aspect that makes this trend outrageous. The patch causes chewing to be extremely painful for a person thereby requiring a liquid only regimen that may be as low as 800 calories per day. Needless to say, this plan can be quite dangerous since individuals are consuming a deficit of both calories and nutrients.
4. Intermittent Fasting
This radical food regimen allows followers to eat whatever they want. While this may sound very tempting, there is a catch. Each plan is based around having two non-consecutive days per week in which only 500 or 600 calories are consumed. The caloric difference lies in whether an individual is male or female. On the other five days, there are no diet restrictions. With its back and forth spikes of calorie consumption, this diet fad can cause nutritional deficits and fails to help followers develop any sort of sustainable lifestyle plan for the future.
3. The Cotton Ball Diet
Moving into the more dangerous weight loss plans is the Cotton Ball Diet. This extremely drastic program became popular through YouTube in 2013. It recommends that you consume about 5 cotton balls dipped in some sort of juice in order to lose weight. Fans of this fad may complete the regimen right before meals to ultimately eat less since the consumption of cotton has tricked the mind into thinking its full. Others survive completely off this normally cosmetic item without consuming any food whatsoever. Of course, there is a huge risk of choking when following risky plans such as this, not to mention malnutrition and intestinal tract blockages.
A popular and dangerous weight loss regimen used by college students has been termed “drunkorexia” and has seen an increase in recent years. In an effort to stay thin and meet peer expectations by going out and partying the night away, lots of college females avoid eating throughout the day in order to save their calories on binge drinking that night. With this approach, they do not gain weight and also feel the effects of alcohol much faster since they are functioning on an empty stomach. Concerned researchers warn that such habits can lead to liver disease, diabetes, and dementia.
1. The Cigarette Diet
Although the health disadvantages to smoking have been heavily researched for many years, doctors are still finding patients who adopt the habit of smoking simply to maintain or reduce their weight. Smoking cigarettes lessens appetite and provides a temporary lift in metabolism which keeps some smokers hooked simply for those few benefits. Numerous smokers fear quitting due to the probability of weight gain; yet, just like any fad diet, this one comes with a cost. Smoking increases risk of multiple cancers, heart disease, and death. However, following a plan that includes clean eating and exercise produces much more long-lasting results without all the risk.