The Fad Diet Rigamarole


Festive season is around and this is the time when the appearance-conscious folks resort to quick-fix diets to hop into, if not zero-size apparels, at least that tiny black dress! But what do these do to your skin? GITA HARI finds out.

To what extent would you go to attain your dream figure, to get into those stylish dresses? After indulging in delicious food and skipping workouts through the year, now you wish for a fabulous physique. That’s where those fancy diets which promise ‘quick weight loss’ jump in.


Weight loss experts opine that crash diets result in loss of muscle mass and water weight, which is an unhealthy way of losing weight and merely temporary. “They include various forms of diet drinks, limited food choices, natural nutrition pills etc. These quick fix methods take a serious toll on the body, skin and hair,” informs Dr. Batul Patel, Dermatologist at The Bombay Skin Clinic.

Dr. Saurabh Shah, Dermatologist at Bhatia Hospital, cites examples of some of the common fad diets and their side-effects: 

1. Raw food diet: Eating raw foods can cause serious gastrointestinal infections.

2. Five-bite diet: It requires you to skip breakfast and eat five bites of anything for lunch and dinner, depriving your body of many essential nutrients.

3. Lemonade diet: You can only consume lemon juice, maple syrup or Cayenne pepper mixed with water. It may result in nausea, fatigue, dizziness and dehydration.

4. Tapeworm diet: Desperate dieters ingest tapeworm eggs to lose weight. Eventually the tape worm grows and consumes the food that you eat. Needless to say, this can cause potentially life-threatening complications.

5. Cabbage soup diet:  It calls for feeding on cabbage soup 2-3 times a day, paired with other low carb supplements. It can lead to bloating and nutritional deficiencies.

6. Keto diet:  This is low-carb diet, which turns the body into a fat-burning machine. It has many potential side effects like dizziness, drowsiness, constipation.

To regain good skin health, Dr. Manjari Puranik, weight loss expert at Insat Sculpt advises, “Apply antioxidant-rich pomegranate locally to help skin create more collagen which speeds-up healing. Consuming strawberries, citrus fruits, red peppers, and broccoli helps in smooth texture while sunflower seeds and almonds help in protection against sun.” If you want a fresh complexion to beat the after-effects of a fad diet? Go for veggies that are dark orange and red in colour. Also, leafy greens, wild salmon, Atlantic mackerel, walnuts help fight wrinkles.


Restoring your skin’s health – Vaishali Makwana — Dietician/Nutritionist and Fitness Trainer
– Fad diets can lead to dehydration and make skin dull and inflexible. Increase your intake of water to three litres daily.
– Protein is essential for cell development so to restore good health of skin, hair and nails consume a protein rich diet.
– If a healthy skin is your target, consume seeds, nuts, fresh vegetables, fruits, curd and honey.
– Supplement diet with essential vitamins like vitamin A, which is vital for maintenance of skin tissue and B Complex for a healthy glow and less hair loss.

Be wary of those temptation-inducing fad diet programs and resort to normal, healthy work-out routines and a nutritious diet!

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