- Aliza Beer
Liquid Diet: Fact or Fiction
People are always in search of the latest, magic, quick fix diet that will allow them to drop excess weight in no time without exerting much effort. One of these popular diets is the liquid detox diet, where, as implied by the name, one essentially ingests little or no food and relies on various blends of juices as the sole source of nutrition. The diet promises to cleanse and detox the body, assist with long-term weight loss, and leave one feeling rejuvenated. Unfortunately, these guarantees are far from the truth and do more harm than good.
A liquid diet may help one achieve some weight loss, but the results will likely not last. Following a liquid diet, which cuts out mostly all solid foods, inevitably causes a major calorie cut in one’s daily intake. When your sole source of nutrition is drinks made from mainly vegetables, fruits, and clear broths, it is much more difficult to reach a sufficient calorie intake to provide one with enough energy for the day. That being said, the deficiency in calories automatically causes a weight loss. The problem is the type of weight that is being lost. While this calorie deficit may burn some fat, which is what we want to rid ourselves of for a healthy weight loss, it is also burning a lot of muscle due to the extremely low protein intake. Muscle mass is important for many components of our long-term health and also keeps up our metabolism, which allows us to burn more calories. On the other hand, a diet such as the liquid diet, which is too low in calories and protein, causes us to burn a lot of muscle weight and slow down our metabolisms, thus making it more difficult to efficiently burn calories.
Once resuming your regular eating pattern again, all the weight will come right back. More often than not, one will gain additional weight as well. This is due to a variety of factors. After such a severe eating restriction, one is more likely to binge eat and actually consume more than before starting the diet. Also, post-liquid diet, one’s metabolism will be significantly slowed down. This combination of overeating with a slow metabolism will lead to weight gain. Therefore, not only is the liquid diet not efficient in causing long-term weight loss, it can actually cause weight gain.
Along with weight loss, the liquid diet claims it provides a healthy, natural detox for the body. However, people often overlook the extraordinary internal detox system, which is exceptionally efficient at detoxing the body. Our liver, colon, and kidneys are designed to filter the body from toxins and chemicals on a constant basis. Of course eating high quantities of processed junk food will leave one feeling bloated and uncomfortable, but that is not to say that these organs are underperforming. It is simply the stomach and intestines reacting to the plethora of food ingested. While this is uncomfortable, the body is still efficiently detoxing itself. Thus, a liquid diet does not aid in detoxing your body.
Lastly, the liquid diet will definitely not leave you feeling rejuvenated. Leaving out necessary nutrients, proteins, and carbohydrates by maintaining a very low-calorie diet will leave you feeling lightheaded and fatigued. The body needs enough calories in the healthy forms of protein and carbohydrates to allow your body to function properly. When you do not meet these needs, your body will be left feeling dizzy and fatigued.
The key to achieving long-term weight loss is a healthy diet combined with regular exercise. A diet that meets a healthful balance of all nutritional needs is the diet that will leave you with a lasting, slim waistline. Furthermore, combining a healthy diet with a regular exercise routine will ensure you are burning fat while maintaining muscle mass, and will keep your metabolism revved up and burning calories.
There are no short cuts to reach success. The liquid diet, which promises a rejuvenating body detox and quick weight loss in a short period of time, is yet another fad diet that will not yield true and lasting results. Though these promises may seem tempting, do not let yourself get lured into the liquid diet fad! Sticking to a healthy diet and lifestyle is the only true way to reach your goal weight and feel your best. Though it may take more time than the outlandish promise of “10 pounds in 5 days” that the liquid diet claims, with proper motivation, patience, and determination you will reach your goal and maintain it in the long run.