Looking to start a weight loss plan for an upcoming wedding? Checking out on popular diet trends? The fad diets are gaining widespread popularity as a health and weight loss strategy.
Thinking about jumping on the Paleo diet, Dukan Diet, Keto diet or intermittent fasting. Are you confuse about which diet plan to start? Though the internet is full of anecdotal success stories, there’s no scientific evidence of health benefits —, particularly in the long term.
Are you aware of the consequences of following these diets on your health? These trendy fad diets are not nutritionally balanced. These diets are either low carb, high protein, low fat or high fat. Most such diets cut out on food groups leading to deficiency of certain micronutrients required for optimum functioning of the body. That is the leading cause of most disorders and diseases.
Most of the proposed benefits of these diets are not enough researched to support or debunk the trend or the studies are based on animal research. These diets are unsafe and should be avoided.
Side effects of low carb diet
There are numerous popular low carb diets claiming for quick weight loss. We get excited with fast results without realizing the aftereffects of following them.
First of all, we need to understand that all kinds of carbs are not bad. Carbs are the primary source of energy & if we are cutting carbs from our daily diet, we will feel lethargic, headache, constipation, bad breath, fatigue and more.
These diets are hard to follow for a long time.
Low carbs diets are usually higher in fats & proteins. And the animal source of protein and fats is adding the risk of heart disease & certain cancers. Some studies suggest that animal-based low carb diets might be associated with an overall shorter lifespan and should be discouraged.
Cutting carbs means cutting fiber & other micronutrients specially phytochemicals that are preventing us from many diseases like heart disease & cancer.
Fiber deficiency alters our gut microbiome, also called ‘second brain’ resulting in negative effect on brain-like brain fog, confusion & even anxiety. Long term effects could be Alzheimer’s disease and other neurovascular disorders.
No stamina to do day to day activities, forget workouts.
It is difficult to keep the weight off that you have lost as while following the low carb diet, your body enters into the starvation mode. Whenever you start consuming carbs, your body starts storing it in the form of fat leading to weight bounce. This means temporary results & are associated with some side effects apart from early aging.
These diets hamper the growth & disturb the hormones if followed by teenagers or by women during physiological conditions. It is advisable to consult your doctor before starting a low carb diet especially if you have any medical condition.
The study by Dr.Seidelmann and colleagues revealed that both a low intake of carbs (less than 40 percent of the total energy intake coming from carbs) and high intake (or over 70 percent) correlated with a higher risk of premature mortality. Apart from the percentage, type of carbs we are choosing, what are the portions and the time of consumption should be considered. Prefer natural complex carbohydrates that provide fiber & are digested more slowly. They serve other body functions beyond fuel.
Side effects of a high-fat diet
A good example of a high fat diet is a keto diet. since most of the daily calories are coming from fat, there is little allowance left for carbs & protein.
In the absence of carbohydrate fuel, the human body is forced to burn body fat; and dietary fat to fulfill its energy needs.
1. The breakdown products of burning large quantities of body fat for fuel are called ketones. These ketones will begin to accumulate in the body.
2. A build-up of ketones can cause all kinds of damage to vital organs such as the liver and kidneys. The build-up deranges the body’s balance of acids and alkaline, causing a condition called acidosis.
3. When the levels of ketones in the body reach dangerous proportions, the dieter finds him- or herself in the same kind of state as a diabetic who has not used any insulin. Unless immediate treatment is applied, he/she can slip into a coma, which may result in death.
Side effects from ketosis can include nausea, headache, mental and physical fatigue, and bad breath. These diets lacking in nutrients that are required for optimum health and to prevent certain diseases.
These diets are devoid of essential nutrients and are hard to follow.
Dangers of high protein diets
These diets are more or less dependant on protein sources of animal origin such as eggs, poultry, meat, seafood, and milk products for energy in the absence of carbs. The Atkins diet, Dukan Diet, Paleo diet are some of the examples of a high protein diet.
These diets do lead to good results but at the cost of our health in the long run.
1. High-protein foods are often also high in animal fats, particularly saturated fats and cholesterol, which increase the risk of heart disease and certain types of cancer.
2. It is ironic that the more carbohydrate you cut out of the diet and the more protein you eat to lose weight, the lower your body protein stores will be because you are burning protein foods as fuel. That results in the loss of muscle tissue.
3. The grains and cereals, particularly the wholegrain varieties, are the main source of dietary fiber in the diet. Eliminating these foods will inevitably cause severe constipation, which can lead to diverticulitis, irritable bowel syndrome, and may even make you more susceptible to bowel cancer.
4. Cutting out wholegrain cereals also exposes you to the risk of developing vitamin B and E deficiencies.
5. Unpleasant body odor and bad breath. If you eat only protein foods, you start to smell like a carnivore. The bad smell is caused by the ketones that accumulate in the body.
Most of the diet books that advocate such diets, always warn that you should only use the diet for one, or a maximum of two weeks, at a time.
The writers know that these diets are fraught with negative effects, so they cover themselves against lawsuits by issuing these warnings. If you use these diets and suffer adverse effects, the blame rests with you for using the diet for too long.
The best alternative to such diets is the lifestyle diet that is balanced; with carbs not less than 40% of total calories with a selection of complex carbs. 20-30% of your calories should come from high-quality protein & remaining calories from healthy fats. Our aim should not be to lose weight but to reduce extra fat while preserving our muscles to be healthy & fit today and in the future.