Fad diets are those that crop up from year to year and make promises that no diet can keep. You might think that since there are testimonials and seemingly reputable people discussing these diets, they must be okay. That is not true. Many of these diets are harmful.
How do you spot a fad diet? Here are some of the characteristics:
Outrageous promises – Have you read the ads that say you can lose ten pounds a week? This is not only untrue but unhealthy and dangerous. Most of that weight will be water weight and you will gain it back as soon as you start to eat properly again. The safe amount of weight to lose each week is one to two pounds.
Cuts out certain food groups – Each food group has something to offer or it wouldn’t be mentioned in the food pyramid. Even fats are needed to build cellular membranes, insulate nerves and cushion the muscles, joints and organs of the body. If any diet discounts a certain group of food, pass it by.
Cut calories to the bare minimum – You have to eat at least 1,000 calories a day in order for the body to sustain its systems. This doesn’t include the energy you will expend during your daily activities. Adults need at least 1,200 calories a day, and if you are exercising you can probably add a few more. Without enough food, you will become hungry all the time, irritable and tired.
Lack of exercise – Losing weight or maintaining a healthy weight is a function of both diet and exercise. Any exercise program that downplays the role of exercise in your daily regimen is not balanced. These are the ones that probably advocate the extreme cutting of calories to lose weight.
Food combining – Some diet programs advocate eating certain foods in combination in order to lose weight faster. What helps you to lose weight is eating foods in correct proportions and avoiding excess bad fats and empty sugary snacks.
Liquid diets – These are among the unhealthiest diets you can find. A liquid diet will not provide the sustenance you need to make it through the day. When the body doesn’t have enough vitamins, minerals and building blocks (protein, fats and carbohydrates) to function, it robs it from your bones, muscles and organs. While you may lose weight you are unhealthier than you were before.