8 DANGERS OF CRASH DIETS
Why you’re better off without them
One of the most common concerns of society now is body weight. Whether the issue is medical or aesthetic, this has become a serious matter all over the world. The rising business of gyms, spas, and slimming supplements and machines are a testament to the extent of what people will do to achieve and keep an ideal weight. A lot of those who want to eliminate excess fats want quick results. And businesses are more than willing to capitalize on this behavior.
This is where new problems start. Crash diets are here, and they’re wreaking havoc on the already compromised bodies of dieters.
Crash diets are programs that promise rapid weight loss over a short period of time. They are usually done without exercise and almost always involve food restrictions, whether in volume or in specific food types.
The Mater Cleanse is one such diet. Also known as Lemonade Diet, this method replaces food with a mixture of lemon juice, organic maple syrup, cayenne pepper, and distilled water. This runs for at least 10 days. Because of the significant decrease in the daily caloric and nutritional intake, weight loss is indeed expected.
The Master Cleanse and similar crash diets pose a lot of health problems in different ways. Depending on personal circumstances, effects may vary in number and severity.
1. Caloric deprivation. By reducing or totally eliminating food intake, you deprive yourself of vital energy needed by the body to function. The results are sluggishness, weakness, and feelings similar to fatigue. People going through crash diets have very limited activities.
2. Malnutrition. Vital nutrients – vitamins, minerals, amino acids, carbohydrates, and fats – are lacking in crash diets, resulting in a malnourished state. On a short term, tissues and organs are not repaired adequately, if at all. In the long term, this can lead to serious damage to vital organs, which will compromise overall function.
3. Mood alterations. Moods are determined by neurotransmitters that are in turn dependent on amino acids. Missing out on these amino acids leads to mood swings, irritability, and in some cases, depression.
4. Muscle wasting. Ideally, weight management should eliminate the fats, not the lean mass. In periods of starvations, the energy reserves in the liver and muscles are consumed first, then the muscles themselves. Without exercise, fat burning comes later. Healthy weight loss is about 1-2lbs of fat per week. That’s about the amount of fats the body can process normally. If you’re losing more than this and you don’t have physical activities, you know that you’re wasting away your muscles.
5. Fatty overload. The liver is the main organ that metabolizes fats. But it has limits. When the body senses a situation resembling starvation, it rapidly mobilization fats to the liver. Most of the time, this is beyond what the liver can handle. If this condition persists, fatty infiltration of the liver (clinically known as fatty liver) can develop. This has serious implications in the body’s ability to digest, convert food to energy, and detoxify.
6. Gallstone formation. Lack of fats in the diet causes the bile in the gallbladder to stagnate. Repeated and continued bouts of fat starvation can cause the formation of bile sludge which can eventually develop into gallstones.
7. Slower metabolism. After about 10-14 days of food deprivation, the body adjusts. It becomes more efficient in energy storage and expenditure. In layman’s terms, this means that the body intensifies its action to store whatever you drink or eat. It will also minimize use of energy and focus mainly on essential functions. This survival mode happens because the body feels that food is scarce and uncertain. When you resume your regular diet, the body will be storing most of what you eat more than what it was doing before your crash diet. It will also be very thrifty in using energy. These lead to…
8. ..Rebound. Because your metabolism is now slower, you will accumulate fats faster and burn fats slower. The net effect: you will be worse off than how you were before you started your crash diet.
Here are some of the important things you need to remember:
1. Any weight loss program that involves food deprivation is bound to fail. It is human nature to eat.
2. The trick is to eat right, not to eat less.
3. Excess weight is just the superficial manifestation of issue in diet, lifestyle, mindset, culture, belief systems, and so many other factors. It cannot be solved just by starving yourself for a brief period.
4. Your condition has been developed through time. It will also require time to undo it. Be patient.
5. The combination of healthy food, regular detoxification, effective exercise, and adequate rest & stress management, is not the best healthy regimen. It is the ONLY healthy regimen.
6. Be very clear about why you want to lose weight. You need this motivation during your moments of weakness.
7. When they tell you that “You’re beautiful as you are,” believe them. It’s true. However, this does not mean that you are healthy as you look.