The market has been flooded with fad diets and products for extreme weight loss.

There are some unhealthy methods and plans you should avoid trying.

In a world where appearance is of the utmost importance and we are judged by how we look, many of us find ourselves on the weight loss treadmill of trying a new fad diet, losing weight, gaining it back, and then trying another fad diet plan.  We know that what we are doing to our bodies must be harmful but in our quest for perfection and beauty we seem not to care.  It's time to stop and take a careful look at what we are doing.  If you are considering another weight loss program you need to evaluate all aspects and long term effects of what it might do. 

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The best guide in choosing a healthy weight loss plan is to ask yourself if the product or program being considered is healthy or unhealthy.  Let's take a look at some of these unhealthy weight loss methods and see why they don't work and why they can harm your health:

Drugs:  Some diet drugs that are on the market have harsh amphetamine-like stimulants in them that are designed to trick your metabolism into running into overdrive.  Some have been known to stimulate the heart into beating as fast as a marathon-runner going at full speed!  Luckily, many of these drugs have been pulled off of the market by the FDA but not before they have caused damage in the people who have taken them, and unfortunately even death.  A possible side-effect of these drugs is when you stop taking the drugs, you can suffer from withdrawal symptoms and will likely regain your weight very quickly.

Ultra Low Calorie Diets:  Well, this is pretty much a no-brainer!  If you starve your body of calories, you will lose weight.  We all know that in order to lose weight, you must consume fewer calories than your body expends.  But, what happens when you try starving yourself by taking in ultra low calories?  Your body requires a certain amount of calories to survive and it can't function properly when it doesn't get enough.  Your body will actually start to cannibalize itself by eating its own vital organ tissue, muscle, and even bone!  As a result, your metabolism will begin to shut down in an effort to preserve your life.  The long-lasting effects of starving yourself might include a variety of conditions such as immune suppression, weak bones, and brain and nerve damage.  Shots and drops do not replace calories.

Unbalanced Diets:  Every few years a huge new fad will hit the market in dieting and it nearly always is a diet that cuts out food groups or is concentrated on just one food group.  These strange diet plans never work for more than just a few days because our bodies require certain vitamins and key nutrients found in all food groups to survive in a healthy manner.  We also find ourselves soon craving those food items that we have been cutting out of our diet.  Once we start eating again, it's hard to quit!  A well-balanced, healthy food plan that is lower in calorie value is the best way to insure that you are getting those vitamins and key nutrients. 

Unproven Diet Supplements:  In almost all countries, the dietary supplement industry is not required to conduct any clinical studies or research to prove the claims that are made regarding weight loss and dieting.   Human clinical studies are not performed on most of the diet supplements that are on the market and without these studies it is impossible to gauge real and accurate results.  Another problem with many diet supplements is that they may contain ingredients that are of dubious value and could even contain contaminants.  In the past, there have been quite a few dietary supplement weight loss products that have been recalled and taken off of the market because of health safety issues.  Many of the manufacturers of these supplements tend to be "fly by night" companies that are only in the industry to make a quick dollar.  The weight loss industry in the United States is a $60 billion dollar industry each year and so you will run into plenty of unscrupulous vendors trying to get rich quick.

Surgery:  For those who are extremely overweight or obese they often consider taking drastic measures and may choose to turn to dangerous surgeries like LAP-BAND or gastric bypass.  These surgeries are very expensive and often are not covered with personal health insurance.  There are many health risks associated with these surgeries that often result in severe side effects such as vitamin and mineral deficiencies, kidney stones, gallstones, gastritis, problems in swallowing, and even blood clots.  These should only be considered as the very last resort.

Extreme Cleanses and Detox Diets:  Occasionally, gentle cleansing can be a good thing for the human body but often these healthy-sounding cleansing and detox diet programs may contain harmful laxatives or diuretics.  Contrary to popular belief, laxatives do not prevent the absorption of foods that you eat.  All of the calories in ingested food have already reached the bloodstream by the time the laxative takes effect.  The only weight loss from laxatives is water weight.  Laxatives can be habit forming and they can cause dehydration, intestinal paralysis, kidney failure, and even pancreatitis.  Often the diurectic herbs used in some of the cleansing and detox programs are not any better than using an over-the-counter laxative and if used daily can also cause dehydration. 

Remember that if you choose an unhealthy weight loss product or program you can be throwing your money away, you might suffer undesirable side effects, and most likely gain the weight back very quickly as soon as you quit!