Our society has always been fascinated with diet culture. Over the years, what body type that is “in” changes and fluctuates for both men and women. Dieting advice, in most cases, is more harmful than helpful. However, we can all agree that when someone tries to give lousy weight loss advice, don’t follow it. Here are some of the worst weight loss advice given.
1. Sugar is the Enemy
Sugar is in everything; even fruits contain sugar, and not all sugar is equal. Natural sugars in moderation don’t tend to be problematic for most people. And while reducing sugar intake is almost always beneficial, cutting out sugar completely can be very difficult and often lead to sugar binges.
2. Using Tapeworms
Believe it or not, there was a time when people were encouraged to use tapeworms for weight loss. Not only is it unsafe, but it can cause nausea, diarrhea, and other infections.
3. Eating in Front of a Mirror
The idea is that a meal is eaten in front of a mirror, and what is eaten is observed. This can be harmful because it can create shame around eating, cause disordered eating patterns, or be triggering for someone who is in recovery from an eating disorder.
4. A Handful of Almonds
A celebrity was recently quoted advising people to eat a handful of almonds; thus, the ‘Almond Mom’ moniker was born. Sure, a handful of nuts can make for a satiating snack between meals, but replacing a complete meal with a handful of almonds severely restricts the body from the nutrients it needs.
5. Water Fasting
Water fasting means essentially only drinking water for a specified period of time. A fast of any type should only ever be carried out under the care of a medical professional, as depriving the body of food and nourishment can be dangerous, especially for those with underlying medical concerns.
6. Daily Weigh-ins
When trying to lose weight, it’s fine to weigh yourself at the beginning of your journey to establish a baseline used for tracking your progress. However, weighing yourself each day – or multiple times throughout the day – can quickly lead to an unhealthy obsession with the number on the scale.
It is better to focus on the non-scale wins as our body weight varies drastically throughout the day, week, and especially month for women. The scale rarely reveals the complete picture and should not be relied upon as the only indicator or weight loss.
7. Taking Diet Pills
For decades, the diet industry has preyed on people unhappy with their bodies. Diet pills are used to suppress the appetite and the user is at risk for becoming on a pill to control how much you eat instead of focusing on eating healthy and nutritious foods and portions.
8. Consuming Liquids Only
A strictly liquid diet will cause weight loss, but you are only losing because you are not eating solid foods anymore. It is impossible to carry on forever, and once solid foods are started again, it can cause stomach issues and weight gain.
9. Over Exercising
Exercising is great for your body and mind as well. However, over-exercising can cause your muscles to be over-tired, heightening your chances of injury. In addition, it’s possible to become addicted to exercising as well, which many experts believe is also linked to eating disorders.
10. Using Twine
If you tie a piece of twine around your waist and eat, you have overeaten if the twine becomes too tight. Overeating will cause the twine to cut into your skin, causing discomfort and stopping you from eating more.
11. No Fat Diet
The misinformation that eating fat causes you to gain weight has been dispelled; however, many people still believe they need to remove fats from their diet to lose weight. However, not all fats are equal, and removing them from your diet completely may end up causing more harm than good.
12. Ideal Body Goal
It is often advised to find images of your ideal body and post them on a vision board to inspire you and help you stay motivated throughout your weight loss journey. And while this may work for many people, for others, it can lead to a distorted body image and keep them striving toward unrealistic goals.
13. Cutting Out Carbs
Some popular diets recommend cutting out carbs to lose weight. Many people have found success with the Keto and Atkins diets; it’s advisable to consult with your doctor before embarking on any type of diet that calls for omitting entire food groups.
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