Fad diets Abstract




Afad diet is a weight loss plan with the promise of a quick loss ofweight through unhealthy and unbalanced diet. It is surprising thatevery other day there is a creation of diet purporting to make thejourney of weight loss simpler and faster than ever before. Fad dietstarget people with the desire to lose weight quickly and without anyform of exercise. This paper is a research work on fad diets anddiscusses fad diets, how to identify fad diets, examples of faddiets, and potential problems associated with fad diets.


Definitionof a fad diet.

Afad diet is a diet plan with the promise of fast weight loss butthrough an unbalanced and unhealthy diet (Glazer, 2014). The targetgroup for the fad diets are the people who would love to lose weightquickly without workouts. In as much as the foods promise to resultin loss of fats, most of them only cause the loss of water weight.Most fad diets arise from an individual taking certain types offoods, giving them the magic power to promote weight loss andconvincing people that they are the most suitable for the promotionof weight loss (Weber, 2016). Surprisingly, at first, these foodsspur weight loss during the first few days of taking them.Unfortunately, the weight loss is only evident in the short-termperiod after which the person using them as a weight loss plan goesback to their previous body weight. Besides only working in theshort-term, these diets could be hard to follow in the long-term,have arbitrary rules without supporting system or reasoning or worsestill harm the lives of the users (Weber, 2016).

Identifyingfad diets.

Dueto the risk factors associated with fad diets, it is imperative tohave information on how to identify these types of food. Recognitionof fad diets is based on the following characteristics. Any foodclaiming to enable one lose a lot of weight, for instance, one poundin a matter of days or a week is a fad diet. The process of unwantedweight gain was a long process, and it is natural that the loss ofthis weight is bound to take time (Glazer, 2014). Any diet for aweight loss plan that seems too good to be true is a fad diet. Suchdiets promise weight loss and maintenance of the ideal weight withoutany regular exercise or giving up on fatty foods. Again, any dietplan helping sell the products of a company is mostly a fad diet. Inmost cases, such diets are expensive requiring one to spendexorbitantly on prepackaged meals, pills, or seminars for the properworking of the plan (Weber, 2016). Fad diets do not have validscientific research in support of its claims. In many cases, thediets draw simple conclusions from complicated research work. Lastly,the diet plan limits the food choices through listing good and badfoods. Such diets do not offer the appropriate food choices toencourage a balanced, healthy nutrition achievable by eating avariety of foods (Weber, 2016).

Examplesof fad diets.

Thereare various common types of fad diets. They include food-combiningdiets, liquid diets, high-protein diets, cabbage, and broth or juice(Glazer, 2014). Certain diet foods indicate that a particularcombination of foods is appropriate for burning calories fast.However, there is no supporting scientific evidence that the bodyprocesses this combination of foods any differently in comparison torandom foods (Weber, 2016). These diets are, unfortunately, low inessential vitamins and proteins and may result in health risks suchas diarrhea. The liquid diets include slim-fast, Cambridge diet, orphytochemicals. These liquid diets may lead to the reduction of foodsubstances that are essential to the body. Additionally, the effectof the liquid diet could only be felt in the short-term with anindividual adding the pounds back once they resume the regular diet.

Thehigh-protein diets work by indicating that consumption of largeamounts of protein results in weight loss and promotes muscle buildup (Glazer, 2014). The truth is, regular exercise and weight traininghelps build up muscles and not the consumption of large quantity ofproteins as this diet proposes. This diet also poses harm to thehealth because consuming high amounts of protein exceeding the bodyneeds could strain the liver and kidneys. Besides this, the focus ofthe diet is on foods rich in protein and could miss out on otheressential nutrients while adding calories and fats to a diet. Ifthere is any weight loss evident from this diet, it is from loss ofwater and not fats.

Thereis a craze for cabbage as a weight loss plan. However, highconsumption of cabbages results in loss of weight water. When onestops the diet, it is highly likely that they regain the lost weight.This diet plan could also harm the health because it results ingastrointestinal problems (Weber, 2016).

Somepeople on a diet try to lose weight by only taking juice or broth fora stipulated period. What these dieters fail to understand is thatfailure to take solid foods for an extended period could result infatigue and dizziness. Again, the body has a natural mechanism ofreacting to the lack of solid foods in the body system by loweringthe rate at which it burns calories. The implication of a lowmetabolism rate is that the body burns few calories and thus does notpromote the much-anticipated weight loss.

Potentialproblems of fad diets.

Mostof the fad diets are potentially harmful to one’s health. Theeffects include ketosis, poor weight-control in the long-term, highchances of chronic diseases, and kidney stones and gout (Weber,2016). Fad diets encourage low intake of carbohydrates putting thebody into ketosis which is not a natural process. Ketosis couldresult from starvation during especially during the intake of juiceor broth. The condition can also result from low intake ofcarbohydrates. During the low intake of carbohydrates to supplyenergy to the body, fats become the primary source of energy whileketones are the transportation means.

Theaim of the fad diets is to promote and encourage a quick weight lossplan. Such a diet plan does not encourage healthy eating habits.Besides, the diet tends to be restrictive and hard to follow in thelong run. Due to this nature of the diet, a dieter may be tempted togo back to the old eating habits once they achieve weight loss makinghim or her add weight.

Theintake of fad diets results in high chances of chronic ailments suchas cancer, hypertension, osteoporosis, and heart diseases (Weber,2016). Most of the fad diets restrict intake of various foods such asvegetables, whole grains, fruits, and dairy products by categorizingthem as “bad foods.” On the contrary, these foods provide theessential nutrients to the body and help in the prevention of chronicdiseases. Additionally, the fad diets encourage intake of highproteins which potentially increases the loss of calcium resulting inosteoporosis.

Faddiets encourage high consumption of foods rich in protein and low incarbohydrates. Such diets in many cases result in the formation ofcalcium oxalate and uric acid which causes gout and kidney stones.


Faddiets provide a quick means of weight loss without placing regard onthe nutritional requirements of the body. Again, the results of theweight loss plan are only evident in the short run with a dieterregaining weight once they resume the regular diet. The process aswell results in potential harm to the body of the dieter. The processlacks any scientific backup and thus not a recommended means ofweight loss. A person desiring to lose weight should considerappropriate ways of weight loss recommended by nutritionists.Although the process could take longer, they promote healthy ways ofweight loss, and the results are long-term.


Glazer,E. (2014). Assessing Fad Diets. NewYork Times Magazine, 9.

Weber,A. (2016). Dead End Diets: Why Fad Diets Don’t Work. SchoolLibrary Journal, 62(3),61