Dangerous dieting

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When those few extra pounds we piled on months ago with mince pies and far too much chocolate are still refusing to budge many of us end up turning to diets which promise quick results with minimum effort. We are surrounded by diets which tempt us in by promises of dramatic weight loss in under a week. These weight loss options seem far too good to be true; regrettably this is because they are in fact too good to be true.

Labelled ‘fad diets’ and featured in nearly every magazine you pick up they seem to be everywhere at the moment. They range from the cabbage soup diet, to the under a thousand calories a day diet, to even, rather surprisingly, the chocolate diet. With so much publicity about these diets it has unfortunately become a trend with no thanks to the many celebrities now sporting the size zero look. Leading us to forget the dangers associated with extreme dieting. In the words of supermodel, Kate Moss, apparently “nothing tastes as good as skinny feels”. But what message is this sending out to those who are trying to lose weight? You can’t help but question if high fashion is hiding serious issues such as anorexia and making dramatic weight loss appear normal and even glamorous.

Far from the stereotypical portrayal of the junk eating student, many students in fact suffer from low self esteem about their weight. This unfortunately often leads to dangerous dieting. With deadlines looming and lectures to attend a healthy diet is essential for energy and concentration. I often speak to friends who boast of their minuscule diet which consists of merely a riveta and an apple. To me this sounds like torture; it may cause dramatic weight loss but at what cost to our body and health? Do we really want to live our lives in starvation like Miss Moss? It is certainly debatable that the results of this sort of dieting are not worth the hassle.

Behind the hype and supposedly glamorous association with fad dieting, they actually prove to be ineffective and pointless. The reality unfortunately is that these diets are unsuitable for a long term weight loss solution due to their extreme nature. Therefore as soon as your week, 5 days or even 1 day is up the weight piles back on. Sadly, this leaves you back where you started, causing you to be frustrated, discouraged and on the verge of giving up. These diets are also unsuitable for weight loss due to their lack of vital nutrients essential to keep your body healthy, leading to long term effects on your health if continued for an extensive period of time.

So here is the truth: dieting is hard, it takes far longer than a week and unfortunately it is not physically possible to lose weight by eating chocolate. So let’s crack out the sweatpants, dust off the gym membership and embrace the vegetables because it’s time to get back to good old fashioned weight loss, sorry L.A.

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