So you have two weeks to fit into a figure-hugging outfit for a special occasion. There’s no harm going on a diet as a quick fix, is there?
Well, it depends. Not all diets are made equal. It’s really the crash diets that you should avoid because they jeopardise your health for short-term weight loss.
If you’re masochistic enough to eat nothing but homemade cabbage soup for a few weeks, this article will make you think twice. Here’s a list of the most questionable crash diets that can backfire on the most disciplined among us.
Crash diets: Overly low-calorie diets
Overly low calorie diets are a whole new level of abstinence. They require you to limit your calorie intake to around 1000 calories per day. This type of diet is usually a clinically supervised diet plan but there are DIY versions available.
1000 calories isn’t a lot at all. To give you some perspective, that equates to about 2 glasses of unsweetened orange juice!
The sudden cutback in calories will supercharge your weight loss but this diet isn’t recommended for most people. Seriously. In fact, experts have made it clear that it is suitable only for people who are obese, or those with a BMI (Body Mass Index) of over 30.
You can expect common side effects that include fatigue, migraines and constipation. But that’s not the worst of it: You can develop gallstones too. When you lose weight too quickly, your liver secretes extra cholesterol. The cholesterol, when mixed with bile, creates a perfect storm for stone-like deposits to form in your gallbladder.
It goes without saying that many of these low-calorie diets will be missing essential nutrients that your body needs. Your body won’t be able to function optimally. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself developing nutritional imbalances down the road.
Moreover, while you will lose weight at first, your body will eventually go into survival mode and start slowing down your metabolism. This is an effort to conserve energy because you’re not consuming enough calories. And that’s the exact opposite of what you want to achieve!
Crash diets: Detox diets
Detox diets generally consist of juice diets and cleansing diets that are marketed under brand names like Master Cleanse. They are often liquid-based.
Juice diets consist of consuming juice from fruits and/or vegetables. Cleansing diets may incorporate procedures like colonics. Other than weight loss, these diets claim that they can help to scrub out toxins from your digestive tract.
Here’s why detox diets are problematic. Firstly, there isn’t any hard science to corroborate the claim that these types of diets have any bearings on the toxins in your body. A meal replacement juice might clear out your bowels, but it’s not the same as pulling out toxins from your bloodstream.
Other dangers of detox diets include side effects such as impaired brain function, gastric pains and headaches. Of course, diarrhea is a given too.
Also take note that juice diets are no-no for those with type 2 diabetes. All the juice consumption could lead to unstable blood sugar levels. For healthy adults, juice diets increase your risk of type 2 diabetes.
The bottom line: Detox diets are a waste of your time and money!
Crash diets: Miracle ingredients
These types of diets sound too good to be true. And the truth is, they are!
Examples of diets with miracle ingredients include the apple cider vinegar diet, the vegetable soup diet, and the green tea diet.
Take the green tea diet, for example. The diet involves drinking green tea several times a day. We know for a fact that green tea has compounds that fire up your metabolism. So why doesn’t it work?
As the saying goes: Green tea can only help you lose weight if you harvest it yourself.
While it’s true that there are thermogenic superfoods with metabolism-friendly properties, they need to be paired with an overall lifestyle change if you want to see visible improvements on your weighing scale.
Include them in your diet because they are conducive for weight loss (and because they’re much, much better than processed foods and canned sodas), but don’t expect these superfoods to do the heavy lifting.
Moreover, limiting oneself to only one or two miracle ingredients is impossible to commit to in the long term. Not only is it extremely tiresome, any weight loss that occurs will most likely be water weight and therefore temporary.
There are also many of these superfoods that, when consumed in excess, can irritate your stomach and cause dehydration.
Negative effects of crash diets
People who take the crash diet route are more likely to become anorexic or bulimic because they find it challenging to return to their regular eating habits. According to one source, the chances of this happening is at least five times more compared to those who do not diet at all.
Even if you don’t develop a serious eating disorder, you’ll be more prone to binge eating. This is because in the long run, crash diets will scramble your body’s natural hunger signals. You’ll overeat beyond the point of fullness simply because your stomach is no longer sending the correct cues to your brain.
Not to mention that depriving yourself of your favorite delicacies actually make them more tempting. In some cases, many people overeat after their diet is over because they feel like they have earned a treat.
The outcome: You may go back to square one, or find yourself at a heavier weight than before.
Lose weight safely
What can you do to lose weight safely? There’s no running away from the age-old advice of eating healthily and exercising regularly. Crash dieting doesn’t pan out in the long run.
Eating healthily requires you to eat foods from all food groups, and eating them in the right proportions. Use My Healthy Plate designed by the Health Promotion Board as a visual guide. In this guide, you should fill half your plate with fruits and vegetables, a quarter with whole grains and a quarter with animal- or plant-based protein or dairy products.
Exercising regularly means incorporating a mix of both cardio and strength training three to four times a week. Cardio forces your body to torch calories. Strength training helps to build lean muscle mass, which is the most powerful fat-burning tissue you have at your disposal.
If you hate working out, even 30 minutes of brisk walking everyday can produce tremendous health benefits.
CSH therapy® complements weight loss
We all need some help in keeping unwanted weight off. With work, travel, family and social commitments, consistent exercise and healthy eating can take a backseat. And once your metabolism slows with age, the results on your waistline can be disastrous.
This is where CSH therapy® can help. CSH therapy® was designed specifically to help individuals maintain a metabolism that functions optimally. When you have a healthy metabolism, you’ll burn calories more effectively.
The three-step formula consists of cupping therapy, scraping therapy and heat treatment, which complement one another to restore metabolic function in a sustainable manner. This results in full-body fat loss and inch loss – not just the temporary loss of water weight.
We’ve been around since 2002 and have served thousands of satisfied clients. That’s why we prefer to let their testimonials do the talking.
Interested to find out more? Get in touch with us here for a consultation.