What are fad diets?

“Hundreds of diets are being promoted as the best approach to losing weight. Unfortunately, many of these diets involve eliminating foods that contain necessary nutrients. Some diets even cut entire food groups. These are fad diets,” according the Cleveland Clinic. (my.clevelandclinic.org)

Keto. Atkins. Paleo. Do any of these diets work in the long-term? Low-carb, high-protein, or high-fat? How do diets affect your brain and body in the long-term?

The Blood Type Diet is so outlandish. Is there any scientific proof it works? Bloody no!

The Cabbage Soup Diet is another quick-fix fallacy. Due to bloating and gas, stay away from parties and other people because you’ll stink worse than the cooked cabbage. Pugh!

The Dukan Diet mucho restricts carbs. It’s just another trendy calorie-cutter. Say farewell to workouts where you feel energized.

The Alkaline Diet claims you can change the acidity of the fluids in your body by balancing fruits and veggies. Huh? New England Patriots Tom Brady should stick to football.

The Military Diet needs to be bombed and put out of commission. Hot dogs and saltine crackers. Ugh.

Raw food, detox, and the three-day flush need to be flushed down the toilet.

The Master Cleanse Diet turns your digestive system into a temporary mess. Lemon juice, cayenne pepper, and maple syrup do not play nice together.

The Jenny Craig Diet and the Nutrisystem Diet uses pre-packaged foods to control portions. Are you going to buy food rations in a bag or box for the rest of your life?

Watch pounds and inches melt away like an ice cube on a sizzling day. Hurry up with your credit card information! Crash diets are hazardous to your bank account. Quick weight loss diets are neither healthy nor sensible. And guess what? The weight comes back when you return to normal eating. “Hi, I’m your fat and I’m home again.” And you’re also shedding water weight. The human body is 75 percent water. Restricting calories all day will set you up for bingeing and cringing in the evenings—with raving and craving in the mornings. Do you want to turn into a food junkie monkey?

Fad food promotes a bad mood. Do you want to be broody and moody? Dieting people annoy other guests at dinner parties.

Following an extremely low calorie diet will cause weight loss. But, you sacrifice nutrients, minerals, vitamins, fiber. And side effects may include headaches, dizziness, and fatigue. Constipation or diarrhea is no fun either.

Of course, celebrities will continue to publicize and peddle their glitzy fad diets with persuading promises of skinny. Don’t believe it!

How do you spot a fad diet? Use common sense, research information on reputable websites, talk to health professionals, and be aware of the following:

• Recommendations that promise a quick fix.

• Claims that sound too good to be true.

• Simplistic conclusions drawn from a complex study.

• Recommendations based on a single study.

• Dramatic statements that are refuted by reputable scientific organizations.

• Lists of “good” and “bad” foods.

• Recommendations made to help sell a product.

• Recommendations based on studies published without peer review.

• Recommendations from studies that ignore differences among individuals or groups.

• Elimination of one or more of the five food groups (fruits, vegetables, grains, protein foods, and dairy). (my.clevelandclinic.org)

Do you want a lasting healthy lifestyle change with food? Then no dieting. Fad diets are sad diets.

(Melissa Martin, PhD, is an author, columnist, educator, and therapist. She lives in Southern Ohio. www.melissamartinchildrensauthor.com. Contact her at melissamcolumnist@gmail.com.)

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