Are you someone who sees a weight loss technique claiming to be the magical answer to your weight woes and think: What’s the catch? You absolutely should be that skeptical. Not because weight loss is unobtainable. But because many self-proclaimed “miracle” techniques are actually really bad for you. Beware the following plans — they have some terrifying side effects.
Cabbage soup diet
The concept of eating nothing but cabbage soup may sounds like a good way to drop weight, but it’s actually quite dangerous. You aren’t getting the protein and nutrients your body needs if you only eat cabbage, and your body will start to slow down from the lack of fuel. Plus, your metabolism will slow down and you won’t lose as much weight after a while.
This crash diet gained popularity a couple years back. But this massive detox can do more damage than good. As Health.com explains, regularly crash dieting breaks down your immune system and raises your risk of a heart attack. It can also damage blood vessels and lead to muscle loss.
Swallowing a tapeworm
Supermodels and the Hollywood elite put this wacky weight loss technique on the map. And if it sounds like swallowing a parasite is dangerous, that’s because it is! As Mayo Clinic explains, this practice of giving yourself an intestinal infection can lead to nausea and extreme abdominal pain. It also prevents your body from properly absorbing nutrients when you do eat, which hurts your immune system.
The 48-hour “miracle” diet claims to make you lose 10 pounds by drinking a special juice concoction every few hours. We can’t say that it actually works. But what it definitely does is lower your blood sugar and put you at risk of suffering from hypoglycemia.
While many people have had success with the Atkins diet, others have suffered through some less than ideal side effects. Early side effects may include stomach pains and digestive issues — being on this diet for a long time can put you in ketosis and hurt your liver and kidneys. Also, the high fat in the Atkins diet puts your heart health at risk.
Feeding tube diet
Studies have found that the feeding tube diet comes with a plethora of negative side effects. In fact, as TIME.com spells out, many of these side effects can result in the need for medical attention and leave you with a massive medical bill.
When it comes to this risky diet, the negatives definitely outweigh the positives. This technique may cause blood clots, as well as fluid retention and the development of breasts in men. HCG may also cause irritability and restlessness, which can — in some cases — manifest into depression.