Rapid weight loss diets have received a lot of criticism for lots of different reasons. Mostly because people start on liquid diets without understanding how to do them effectively and safely. I’m here to tell you that any of the negatives associated with loosing weight quickly can be either completely eliminated or at least diminished significantly.
First, lets go over some of the common attributes of a rapid weight loss diet.
- Generally more than 5 lbs of weight loss a week
- Very few calories a day (sometimes less than 500)
- Very strict guidelines as to what foods you can eat
- Generally not sustainable for long periods of time
- Possibility of weight gain after the diet is over
- Possibility of not getting the nutrients your body needs
The first three are important parts of a diet of this kind.
The last three are completely avoidable.
A sustainable diets gives your body everything it needs. The reason many diets that promise rapid weight loss aren’t good in the long run is usually due to the non-inclusion or exclusion of essential elements like soluble fiber, protein and various vitamins and minerals. They will leave these things out for a number of reasons. Most of the time the plan merely fails to include these essential substances. Take fiber for example. Carb cutting plans tell you to stay away from sugars and other carbohydrates. They don’t tell you not to eat fiber, but its much harder to get fiber without carbs. So unless you’re making a point to add it, you will most likely not get enough just from avoiding carbs. However, you can soluble fiber, and almost any other nutrient in supplement form without compromising the diet.
Fiber and multivitamins can be taken in liquid form or as capsules. Neither of these things will add significant calories to the diet. Don’t forget about amino acids as some aren’t included in your standard multivitamin.
Protein can be obtained from protein drinks, mixes, milk and (less common but cool) capsules. Most protein drinks contain a few calories (~100 per serving, though it varies) but since protein is so important in maintaining lean body mass, the calories are a small price to pay.
There are other things you can add with little impact on the weight loss aspect of the diet that will help round it out. Have you ever heard of maca root? This root contains a ton of vitamins including selenium, calcium, magnesium, iron, fatty acids including linolenic acid, palmitic acid, and oleic acids, and 19 amino acids. With all of these nutrients, so many of them hard to find in foods, its easy to see why its considered a super food. There are other foods like maca you can get as a mix or powder and integrate into a full liquid diet as well. Ask your nutritionist or google “super foods.”
The main idea here is that liquid diets, like anything can be done safely to great effect. Its all a matter of getting just what one needs to function normally and eliminating junk from food choices. Preparing your own meals from whole ingredients is a good way to eliminate much of the crap you get in most prepared-and-packaged foods or at a chain restaurant. So many foods that are made to be sold use recipes that almost exclusively focus on taste and cost. Marketers will say anything is healthy, but your health is not one of their major concerns. It is a huge selling point though, especially today. Any food could be considered “healthy”, they all can keep us from starving to death at least. Know what healthy really means as far as your needs and if you don’t already understand nutrition info and serving sizes, learn them. Then you won’t have to deal with the hype.
The best way to understand what diet will work the best is to first understand what you need. Then research lots of different types of diets. Pick a category and choose a specific plan based on value and non commercial reviews. Lastly, add any supplements to the diet that it doesn’t include. When doing research, don’t get your info about a product from a sellers page. Ignore reviews and comments on forums with affiliate links to the product. I realize some of these may be honest reviews, but too many are mainly interested in selling. When you’re on the diet, listen to your body. Feeling less energetic is normal, but if you feel ill or you notice any physical abnormalities or dramatic mental changes you should resume your normal diet until you have consulted with a doctor.