Fast Weight Loss and Fad Diets

A word of advice to all you people out there: whenever you see the words “fast weight loss”, run like hell. Or, if it’s a web-based advertisement, hit Alt+F4 on your keyboard. These are tricky words that should never be trusted by anyone interested in living a healthy life and enjoying the proper functions of his or her body. Which is why I advise everybody to avoid dangerous myths that are perpetuated by unscrupulos people. 

Slimming is always a rather lengthy process, depending on how much weight you want to lose. Two or three pounds are not a big deal. A stone or more is something else entirely and you should be prepared to spend some time getting rid of it. But the number of pounds to be lost is not that important. What’s really at stake here is the idea that the weight you’ve put on in a couple of months or years can be shed in two or three weeks.

There is no miracle cure. There is not a shred of evidence supporting the idea that starving yourself in order to lose weight as fast as possible and trying hard to drop more than two pounds per week is a healthy choice. But all health care experts and dietitians agree that what people need is to eat sensibly and exercise on a regular basis instead of destroying themselves with crash diets.

The problem with crash and fad diets is that they do not work in the long-run. Sure they’ll help you get rid of the annoying fat that makes your thighs look big and your stomach look like a lump of pudding. But will those departed pounds stay away? Do you know anybody who managed to stay in shape after the crash diet? Somebody that did not put the fat right back on?

Fad diets are based on the idea that some kind of secret ingredient makes fast weight loss possible and that you only need to stick to the plan for some time and everything will be fine. Well, it doesn’t work out that way in real life. I know people that would swear by the cabbage soup diet, but they are now just as fat as ever.

There is no evidence that cabbage soup, grapefruit or Doctor Atkins revolutionary diet have any anything to do with slimming beyond the severe restriction imposed on the intake of calories. A low caloric intake is bound to make you lose weight regardless of whether you’re drinking cabbage soup or not. Limiting your food to some supposedly magic ingredient is never a good idea.

Fast weight loss is also hard on your body and especially on the heart. The speed of change pushes the body’s adjustment skills to the limit. Coupled with the starvation that is a staple of fad diets, you get a very dangerous situation. The more you try to force yourself to lose weight at an unhealthy rate, the more damage you do to your own body.

There is no healthy alternative to the tried and true way: eat a balanced diet with many vegetables and fruits and skip the snacks, fast foods, sweets and sodas. Exercise a bit daily, even if it’s only going for a brisk walk. This will keep your body in shape for years without the need to starve or torment yourself. It’s that simple.

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