The Reality Check: 5 Undeniable Reasons Fad Diets Are Bound To Disappoint
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Kaelin Tuell Poulin ‧ Former IFBB Pro athlete and Co-founder of LadyBoss Weight Loss
Fad diets have been around for a long time and each one has come and gone, leaving people unsatisfied. A fad diet comprises an eccentric or different way of eating, usually by focusing on one food group or ingredient for the bulk of meals. While fad diets and many of their followers swear by their effectiveness, fad diets can actually be very dangerous.
Even if you do follow a fad diet and lose some weight, the weight loss will not be permanent and you will probably have lost weight in an unhealthy way. Fad diets do not work for many reasons and should be left alone; if you want to diet, a healthy diet and regular exercise is the best place to start.
#1. They Are Void Of Exercise
Mostly, there is no exercise routine linked to a fad diet. A fad diet usually comes with the mindset of 'get fit quick'.
While a healthy diet is an important part of losing weight or staying fit, exercise is also crucial. Just because you eat fruit and vegetables every day does not mean your body will not benefit from a bit of cardio.
If you follow a fad diet, you will be eating one type of food for a few months while remaining sedentary. Even if you eat well, being sedentary is not good for you. It is important to get some daily exercise into your schedule, even if it means taking the stairs instead of the lift or walking your dog around the block.
TIP: It is important that you get daily exercise into your schedule, even if that means taking the stairs instead of the elevator or walking your dog around the block.
#2. They Are Not A Sustainable Source Of Nutrients
As mentioned above, many fad diets rely on one or two food groups for the majority of your meals. If you eat one food for a whole month, for example, your diet will be devoid of all the other nutrients, vitamins and minerals that you need for proper nutrition, apart from the few that are included in the fad diet.
This is incredibly unhealthy and can make you feel worse. Every meal you eat should be balanced with protein, fruit and vegetables and grains. If you are not getting at least one portion of these food groups a day, you are not keeping your body healthy.
#3. Fad Diets Set Unrealistic Goals
Unlike eating healthily every day, a fad diet usually lasts only a few weeks or months. In those few weeks, a fad diet claims to make you healthier and to make you lose weight. If you lose weight at all on a fad diet, it will be because of a poor diet, not because you are getting all the right food groups in your diet.
The biggest element of a fad diet is usually about the quick fix, which implies that anyone can lose a certain amount of weight in just a few weeks. Learn more about realistic weight loss goals here. Couple that with no exercise plan and you are better off not dieting at all.
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#4. There Is No Science Behind Them
Fad diets are just that: fads. They have no science behind them and there is definitely no doctor or nutritionist who has proven that eating one type of food for a month can help you lose weight or get healthy.
If you want a diet that is proven to help you get healthy and stay healthy, visit your nutritionist or doctor and ask them what they recommend for your goals.
#5. Fad Diets Are Limiting
Sometimes fad diets ask you to cut out one or more food groups, rather than adding more of a food to your diet. This is incredibly restrictive, and usually the food group the fad diet insists you cut out is necessary for your daily diet.
Unless you take a multivitamin or get these nutrients from somewhere else, you could be missing out on something important for bone health, your heart or brain function.
The Bottom Line
Before following a fad diet, try to find a healthier alternative. Remember that regular exercise is just as important as your daily diet. A balanced diet should include all the basic food groups to promote a healthy lifestyle.
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A fad diet is a weight loss plan that promises dramatic results with little effort. Unlike balanced dietary plans recommended by nutritionists, fad diets often involve extreme, unsustainable restrictions and can be short-term in nature. Their primary appeal is quick weight loss, not long-term health.
While some people might witness initial weight loss, fad diets are not sustainable in the long run. They can deprive the body of essential nutrients, lead to muscle loss, and even disrupt metabolic function. Over time, this can result in nutrient deficiencies, decreased bone density, and other health complications.
Yes, drastically cutting calories can send the body into "starvation mode." This slows down metabolism as the body tries to conserve energy. When returning to regular eating patterns, it's easier to gain weight as the body now burns calories more slowly.
Fad diets are not designed for longevity. Once individuals revert to their regular eating habits, the weight often comes back, sometimes even exceeding the initial weight. This yo-yo effect is not only discouraging but can also harm one's health.
Ditch the concept of quick fixes. Embrace a balanced, nutritious diet combined with regular physical activity. It's essential to make lifestyle changes that you can maintain in the long run. Seek advice from nutrition and fitness professionals to tailor an approach that's right for you.
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