Is Your Diet Dangerous?

It’s January and like many people, you may have resolved to lose weight in 2014. It’s a great resolution. Maintaining a healthy weight is important for your physical and mental wellbeing. The danger is in the DIET. There is no mystery behind weight loss. The keys to success are simple, and there are only two of them. Eat Less, Move More. Diets are appealing because they offer specific instructions and promise quick results. But, you must be careful of the side effects and potential failure rates.

–       Losing weight too quickly is inherently unhealthy. Experts recommend no more than two pounds a week.

–       The vast majority of people who lose weight on fad diets gain the weight back and many end up weighing more than they did before the diet. This can lead to frustration, binge eating, and even depression.

–       Dehydration is a real risk as much of the weight lost rapidly is water weight.

–       Fatigue is a side effect of most fad diets. You end up looking great in the party dress but not having the energy to party.

–       Serious digestive problems can result from an unbalanced diet. I have no evidence to back this up, but I hear time and again of people with gallbladder issues and appendicitis after no carb diets.

–       Diets that limit what food groups you can eat or focus on one type of food can cause nutritional deficiencies.

–       Fad diets are unsustainable. They can offer a quick fix, but can set you off on a weight loss/weight gain roller coaster. For healthy lifelong weight maintenance, eat right and exercise. It may be boring and lack the flashiness of the newest diet, but the upside is, it actually works — not that I would know, but that is what I hear.

I get it. If you are trying to squeeze into a bridesmaid dress for a wedding in a couple weeks, go for it. But, be smart, manage your expectations and know the risks of extreme dieting. In all likelihood, you will gain it all back.


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Author: Karen Latimer

Karen is a Family Doctor, mom of five and founder of Tips From Town.


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