Whether it’s for the beach season or New Year’s Eve, there is always going to be a perfectly good reason to lose weight. There are always going to be those miracle solutions out there promising you outstanding results in record time. Needless to say, fad diets are extremely tempting and some of them are actually efficient, at least on the short term.

This is the first thing you need to acknowledge about fad diets. They just might make that miracle come true for a short period of time, but when the clock strikes midnight, you will turn back into your pumpkin self.

fad diets have consequences

As long as you are aware of the fact that the weight you are going to lose by following these diets is going to come back in a few days’ or weeks’ time, you can actually use them in emergency situations and cope with the consequences. In order to understand the full extent of the issue, let us tell you a bit about fad diets and their limitations.

What Are Fad Diets?

The unofficial definition for fad diet is a weight-loss plan that promises dramatic results in record time. Lose five pounds in a week, lose 15 pounds in 13 days, get that slim figure you have always dreamed of. This is usually what fad diets pledge to do.

It’s an extremely attractive offer, but before you make that change to your diet, you need to take a minute to look at the bigger picture. Take it all with a grain of salt and plan a little bit ahead because it will make a considerable difference in the end.

The Limitations of Fad Diets

Before you actually go on one of the “miracle” diets, you need to remember these very important 5 facts about them:

  1. The amount of weight they promise to help you lose is, at least, a little bit exaggerated.
  2. The final amount of weight you are going to lose by following the diet depends on the number of diets you have previously been on. Most of all, it depends on the particularities of your metabolism.
  3. When you go back to your regular diet, the pounds you lost with the fad diet will come back one by one in record time as well.
  4. No miracle diet can help you keep off the pounds you lost after you switch back to your regular diet.
  5. Not every single fad diet out there is compatible with your metabolism.

honesty About Fad Diets

The weight that these diets claim they can help you lose is probably a little bit higher than the record-setting result. There is never any mention about the main characteristics of the group of people that have generated these results, such as age, sex, and initial weight.

The higher the initial weight is, the more impressive the results will be. Moreover, the lower the age of the person following the diet it, the faster the results will be attained. While there are no facts that you can rely on, you need to be aware of the fact that your “miracle” weight loss might be a little bit smaller than expected.

The Aftermath of Fad Diets

Many fad diets demand you eat items from certain food groups only. Therefore, you will not be getting well-balanced nutrition while you’re on them. If you’re a healthy person, you might not feel the repercussions very strongly, although they are going to be present. This happens because your body will be able to handle them and slowly go back to normal once you stop the diet.

However, this is not the case for people who already have certain medical conditions when they get on the crash diet. This is the main reason why drastic dietary changes should be discussed with a doctor before the consequences come knocking. But this almost never actually happens. So what you need to acknowledge is that you might be putting yourself in real danger when starting a crash diet.

Another aspect that should be made clear is that you will regain the weight you lost during the diet. Staying on a crash diet for the long-term is unsustainable because these dietary plans simply do not provide you with enough nutrients.

Fad Diets

So, once you go back to eating normally, your body will also go back to its normal proportions. Moreover, you might even gain an extra pound or two because your body will want to be prepared for the future when it will face hunger.

This is known as the yo-yo effect because people who make a habit out of following crash diets end up having fluctuating weight. Resorting to fad diets might be efficient on the short term for the first couple of times. However, once you gain experience in doing this, the effects of the crash diets will be less and less rewarding.

The Most Popular Fad Diets

We have made a list of fad diets that have been particularly popular along the years. They have gathered a longstanding reputation of efficacy, however short lived it might be, and somehow they never actually went out of style.

The Military Diet (the Three-Day Diet)

This diet only lasts for 3 days, during which you can lose up to 10 pounds. It is a low-calorie diet meant to help you shake off those extra pounds for a special occasion. Here’s everything you have to do:

Day 1

Breakfast – 1 cup of coffee, 1 slice of toast (whole wheat is preferable), 1/2 grapefruit.

Lunch – 1 cup of coffee or tea, 1/2 cup of tuna, 1 slice of toast.

Dinner – 3 ounces of any meat, 1 cup of green beans, 1 small apple, 1/2 of a banana, 1 cup of vanilla ice cream.

Day 2

Breakfast- 1 egg (cooked however you like as long as you do not add oil), 1 slice of toast, 1/2 banana.  

Lunch – 1 cup of cottage cheese, 1 hard-boiled egg, 5 saltine crackers.

Dinner – 2 hot dogs (without the bun, obviously), 1 cup of broccoli, 1/2 cup of carrots, 1/2 banana, 1/2 cup of vanilla ice cream.

Day 3

Breakfast – 1 slice of cheddar, 1 small apple, 5 saltine crackers.

Lunch – 1 slice of toast, 1 egg (cooked however you like).

Dinner – 1 cup of tuna, 1/2 banana, 1 cup of vanilla ice cream.

This is actually one of those fad diets that works. While you will need to adapt your expectations to realistic proportions, the military diet will definitely help you lose weight. However, you need to be aware that it is intended for healthy people only and that you are bound to be quite hungry during those three days. If you begin feeling dizzy, you might want to eat something and find another diet that allows you more generous meals.

The Danish Diet (The 13-Day Diet)

This 13-day plan has supposedly been developed by the Royal Danish Hospital for patients who need to lose an important amount of weight in as little time as possible. So, it promises dieters a weight loss of 13 to 25 pounds, which is impressive to say the least.

The diet is extremely strict and it is supposed to be followed to the letter. It includes a meal plan for each of the 13 days. Take a look!

Day 1

Breakfast – 1 cup of coffee, 1 teaspoon of sugar.

Lunch – 400g of boiled spinach, 2 hard-boiled eggs, and 1 tomato.

Dinner – 200g of beef and 150g of lettuce salad (you can use olive oil and lemon juice as dressing).

Day 2

Breakfast – 1 cup of coffee, 1 teaspoon of sugar.

Lunch – 250g of ham and one pot of yogurt.

Dinner – 200g of beef and 150g of lettuce salad (you can use olive oil and lemon juice as dressing).

Day 3

Breakfast – 1 cup of coffee, 1 teaspoon of sugar, 1 slice of toast.

Lunch – 2 hard-boiled eggs, 100 g of lean ham, 150g of lettuce.

Dinner – boiled celery, 1 tomato, 1 apple.

Let's Be Honest About Fad Diets

Day 4

Breakfast – 1 cup of coffee, 1 teaspoon of sugar, 1 slice of toast.

Lunch – 200ml of orange juice and one pot of yogurt.

Dinner – 1 hard-boiled egg, 1 grated carrot, 250g of Dutch cheese.

Day 5

Breakfast – 1 grated carrot.

Lunch – 200g of boiled fish with lemon juice and a spoonful of butter.

Dinner – 200g of beef and boiled celery.

Day 6

Breakfast – 1 cup of coffee, 1 teaspoon of sugar, 1 slice of toast.

Lunch – 2 hard-boiled eggs and 1 grated carrot.

Dinner – 300g of chicken and 150g of lettuce salad (you can use olive oil and lemon juice as dressing).

Day 7

Breakfast – 1 cup of black coffee.

Lunch – just water.

Dinner – 200g of lamb and 1 apple.

This plan is supposed to be followed for 13 consecutive days, so dieters are only expected to go through the dreaded Day 7 once. They are not allowed to include any other food in the plan for it to have the full effect, which makes the 13 days almost unbearable. The vast majority of dieters who try the Danish Diet end up quitting after a few days.

The Cabbage Soup Diet

This is one of the oldest diets out there. It has been passed on from one generation to the next for many years now and it has been followed by people from all over the world. Precisely because it is so popular, there are quite a few versions of the diet out there.

The main dish is obviously the cabbage soup, which is prepared without adding any oil or cream. It is actually quite delicious and it has a strong diuretic effect that enables dieters to lose a few pounds. They are supposed to have the cabbage soup for lunch and dinner, alongside protein, vegetables, and fruit.

This crash diet is efficient and it is a good choice for those moments when you are looking to get into shape fast. However, as soon as the cabbage soup intake is ceased, you should expect to gain the weight right back.

Let’s be honest about fad diets. They are a temporary solution for people’s weight problems and their effects are short lived. If you want to keep the weight off, there is no way around the classic solution: diet and exercise.

You can personalize your diet and include the food that actually helps you lose weight, but aim for a well-balanced diet that will keep you healthy. Furthermore, you can go to a nutritionist who can develop a diet plan for you that is perfectly suited for your needs.

You might want to think twice before getting on one of these fad diets because you need to be able to handle the consequences as well!

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