How to Recognize a Fad Diet – And Why You Should Avoid Them
If you’re a night owl, you’ve probably seen countless paid ads touting all kinds of miracle diets that guarantee you’ll lose weight. And while many of the fakes are easy to spot, some diet ads are so cleverly designed, it can be difficult to determine if they’re really worth your time and investment or if they’re just another flash in the pan. The fact is, it’s a pretty sure bet that any diet that’s promoted on paid infomercials exists for one reason only – to make money. And what’s worse, many of these diet fads and myths can actually be bad for your health, creating nutritional deficiencies, causing dehydration and resulting in other issues that can have an impact on your health.
So why do these diets remain so popular? There are two primary reasons: First, most people who want to lose weight know it’s not easy; many of their previous attempts at weight loss may have failed miserably. So when it comes to promises of “quick fixes,” they’re more than willing to listen – and buy. The second reason is because of the way these commercials and other ads are developed. Many of them claim to be based on data from clinical studies, when really, they’re almost always an oversimplification of very complex scientific data. Still, just a hint of a clinical study is enough to make some diets seem legitimate.
If you’ve been swayed by diet ads that seem like they may just be too good to be true, here are some warning signs to help you spot a fad diet so you can steer clear:
- Restricting you to a few foods with little or no regard for your overall nutritional needs and potential deficiencies
- Claiming quick weight loss – often more than a pound or two per week without addressing underlying medical conditions or blood testing.
- Relying on “before and after” photos or paid endorsements from diet “experts”
- Ignoring other necessary lifestyle changes like exercise
- Guaranteeing weight loss of X pounds in X days
- Requiring the purchase of expensive proprietary pills, patches or supplements
So what’s a better choice if you want to lose weight and keep it off? Try a medical weight loss program. Medical weight loss offers many of the same benefits that fad diets proclaim to offer. The difference is that medical weight loss is backed by verifiable research and a long history of results. And because a medical weight loss program is custom-tailored to your individual needs, you have a much better shot at losing weight and keeping it off for the long-term.