You have probably heard or read something similar to the phrases above; supplements, meal plans, or weight-loss programs that are promising you the results that you are looking for. Most people I see that try these fad diets and supplements are miserable, lacking nutrients, and going broke from spending so much money on these quick-fixes! While these programs or supplements MAY work, it is likely short-term and not typically something you can maintain long-term. To be honest, most of my clients end up yo-yo dieting following the newest weight-loss fad and never reaching a happy and healthy lifestyle that they can maintain.
So, how do you know if something is a gimmicky, fad diet? Check out my fad diet red flag list below!
#1- Promises of quick weight-loss
This goes for any program saying they will help you to lose 10 pounds in the first week! Most of the initial weight that you lose is going to be water weight! A good weight-loss goal is 1-2 pounds per week. This slow and steady weight-loss will help you to make those small changes that will become habits and also help you to keep the weight off.
#2 - Claims of this product or program being the only weight-loss solution
Seriously though, if there was a magical food or program that made all the fat melt away and help you to lose every pound you ever wanted, don't you think everyone would be taking it? There is no miracle pill or food. Period.
#3 - Rigid diet plans
Rigid meal plans can definitely work short-term; however, not so much in the long-term. Most people end up craving their favorite foods, bingeing, stopping the diet plan, re-gaining weight, and then starting all over again. Going super low calorie or limiting the foods that you eat can be time consuming (planning wise), overwhelming, and down right stressful. What will work is a flexible and realistic eating pattern that works for YOU. There is no one-size-fits-all approach.
#4 - Super foods that will decrease this and that disease
Apple cider vinegar cures Diabetes. Eating kale makes you lose weight faster. Eat only grapefruits to cut the belly fat. Seriously, I have heard them all! What is ironic to me is that I see some doing shots of apple cider vinegar for breakfast and then eating a cheesesteak for lunch. Makes sense, right?! Yes, these foods may have awesome nutritional and health benefits; however, none of them will fix all of your diet issues and ailments. Instead of focusing on one particular food to eat, work towards a variety and balance of your meals.
#5 - Insanely high prices
Eating eating does not need to cost hundreds of dollars per month. I have seen so many supplements and products that cost double what you would find in a regular grocery store. Again, I am not saying all of these programs are horrible or do not work; however, I would challenge you to see if you could find something similar in nutrition at your next shopping trip for way less money. Just a side note here. Healthy eating does not have to be expensive. Canned or frozen veggies can be so cheap! Healthy eating on a budget does take planning; however, you don't need to buy exotic ingredients to be healthy! ***I am going to do a blog post on this later :)
There are so many more red flags for fad diets like only eating one food for days or eating a specific combo of foods or eliminating exercise. The reality is that there is no magical food or supplement. It takes a lot of effort to change your eating habits and start eating healthier. Get off the diet wagon and head towards a healthy lifestyle change that will incorporate nutritious foods, exercise, and overall wellness that will work for the long-term!
Watch more on fad diets and weight-loss programs here --> YouTube-Fad Diets