The worst diets out there are usually referred to as fad diets. They're the ones all the celebrities are endorsing or using to lose weight for a performance. Nowadays social media influencers can be the ones promoting fad diets too. The diets all start with the promise of quick weight loss but they never really talk about the side effects like fatigue and dizziness. Most of the time, the weight comes right back because only water weight was loss, and other times, people regain the weight because the diet is physically unsustainable and they fall back into their old eating habits. Some fad diets are just outright ridiculous. Here are just a few of the bad diets we came across:
- The Werewolf Diet Also called the lunar diet, this diet prescribes fasting time that allows only water, fruits, or vegetable juices during a new or full moon. Different variations of it also prescribe different eating plans depending on the phase of the moon. The problem with this diet is that there's no science behind it and it's not sustainable. The weight you lose ends up coming back.
- The Five-Bite Diet This diet says that you can eat anything you want as long as it's only 5 bites. Skip breakfast, 5 bites at lunch, and 5 bites at dinner. The idea is to limit your calorie intake. Here's the problem: you 5 bites of a donut but that's not good for you. There are also foods out there where 5 bites can mean 1000 calories. Not good either.
- The Cotton Ball Diet This one blew our minds. For this diet, you eat a cotton ball soaked in orange juice. Crazy, right? It's supposed to suppress hunger in someway and the orange juice is supposed to provide enough nutrients, we think. The worst part is cotton balls are usually not pure cotton. They're made with bleach and synthetic fibers. They even block your intestinal track. Please don't try this one at home.
- The Tapeworm Diet People actually ingest a tapeworm so that the tapeworm would eat the food he/she eats. A tapeworm! And after the person has lost enough weight, they would ask a doctor to prescribe medication to eliminate the tapeworm. This is outright insane. Tapeworms can lay eggs in other parts of your body and some side effects can be lifelong or even lead to death. You have to eat a live worm, feed it to keep it alive, and then you can die. Say no to tapeworms.
- The Alkaline Diet This diet is interesting. It asks you cut out meat, dairy, sweets, caffeine, alcohol, artificial and processed foods, and eat more fresh fruits and veggies, nuts and seeds instead. The idea is that you want to regulate the pH balance in your body through the foods you eat. Kind of makes sense right? Good focus on fruits, veggies, and nuts! Well, it turns out our bodies are really good at regulating pH balance already so cutting out those other foods actually does more harm than good since the food groups are really restricting and you won't get all the nutrition you need.
There were a few other bad diets out there like cabbage soup, ultra strict vegan diets, the baby food diet, and the sleeping beauty diet. We even came across an article that said the paleo diet, fasting, and whole 30 diet weren't good for you.
Overall though, all the articles point back to eating a healthy, diverse diet without overeating. As always, moderation is key. Keep a mindful eye on your calorie count. Get your fruits, veggies, and nuts, but also get enough lean proteins and whole grains. There's no quick fix for weight loss. So eat well, sleep enough, drink water, and exercise often!
Some extra reading if you're interested: