How to spot fad diets

Are you excited about a diet because it seems too good to be true?

Are you eager to try it because you want quick results?

When it comes to diets, you should always be skeptical. Fad diets are usually popular, but neither sustainable nor effective. Here are some red flags to spot a fad diet.

You can't believe it actually works!

Fad diets don't require a lot of effort, but promise quick results. Remember, a healthy approach to weight loss has no shortcuts; and if it sounds too good to be true, it probably doesn't work.

You don't know how it works

You hear a lot about the diet and its results, but don't hear much about how it actually works. Diets should be evidence-based and scientifically transparent. The science that backs a diet should be available to the public and easily understood. Fad diets typically do not have the empirical data to support the claims that they actually work.

It's promoted by celebrities

When considering a diet, examine where it's coming from. Who is promoting it? Is it a nutritionist or medical professional, or is it a celebrity or public figure?

No risk, all reward

When considering a diet, ask yourself if companies are transparent with the risks associated with the diet. If the answer is no, it's likely a fad diet.

It involves shortcuts

Does the diet entail fasting or missing meals? If yes, that's a red flag for a fad diet. Fad diets also typically involve drastic restrictions of certain foods. A healthy approach to weight loss is focused on moderation, not restriction. Over-the-counter weight loss pills are also a common feature of an ineffective fad diet.

It's not sustainable

Fad diets are not long-term solutions because they encourage permanent changes in your diet and nutrition habits. Fasting, missing meals, and restricting certain foods is not realistic or sustainable. Fad diets prioritize drastic changes over healthy and sustainable long-term changes.


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