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5 Unhealthy Weight Loss Methods You Should Avoid

Posted by Dr. Donna Restivo on Jul 25, 2017 2:55:00 PM

In Health Tips

You can stay healthy and lose weight fast if you make changes to your diet, get a little more active, and detoxify your body. But it can sometimes be difficult to stick to your weight loss plan. Some people get frustrated because they’ve lost weight and have regained it again. If you’re feeling desperate, you may be tempted to try some of the most extreme and unhealthy weight loss methods you can find. They’re spread online, by word of mouth, or through negative reinforcement in personal practice.

Unfortunately, not only are these methods bad for your health, they don't actually help you lose weight or keep it off. Any weight loss doctor will tell you that they may even be dangerous. Here are some of those most common unhealthy weight loss methods to stay away from:

Using Tobacco to Suppress Appetite

Cigarettes, chewing tobacco, and even nicotine gum are all appetite suppressors. Some people use them to reduce their cravings for sugary foods or as a substitute for one of their meals. But the side effects of using these products are so detrimental to your health that they are never worth it.

Tobacco can cause cancer, heart disease, and lead to other health problems like emphysema and stroke. Nicotine is also highly addictive. Even if your plan is to quit after you’ve lost some weight, you may have a much harder time doing so than you originally imagined.

Over-Exercising

Getting active is an important part of maintaining your overall health. It can even help you lose weight by burning a few excess calories, as long you’re managing your diet. Work with your weight loss doctor to determine a healthy exercise plan.

Exerting yourself too much can cause you physical harm in the form of muscle pulls and back pain. Recent research has shown that overexertion may also be detrimental to your internal health, especially if you aren’t getting the nourishment you need to maintain strenuous exercise.

If you’re just starting a new exercise routine, start out slow and don’t overdo it. Gradually work yourself up to a stable pace that you’re comfortable with and maintain it for your next workouts. A little bit of exercise is always better than none at all, but that doesn’t mean going to extreme lengths will help you lose weight.

Replacing Meals with Water

Although studies have shown that drinking plenty of water each day can help you burn more calories, replacing meals with water is not a healthy way to lose weight. In fact, replacing meals with water is simply starving oneself by skipping meals. Eating regular meals each day ensures that your metabolism keeps running. Skipping meals makes your body go into starvation mode and store more of what you eat as fat. Drink plenty of water, but eat as well.

Taking Laxatives

When taken as directed by a doctor, laxatives are designed to alleviate constipation by artificially stimulating the large intestine. If you take laxatives when you are not constipated, you are not flushing the body of calories, fat, or toxicity; you are flushing it of the essential nutrients and hydration that your organs need to operate properly.

Misuse of laxatives can lead to serious and sometimes life-threatening health problems. They are not an easy solution for losing weight.

Cutting out Entire Food Groups

While it’s a good idea to quit eating processed sugars, cutting out entire food groups may cause you to miss out on the nutrients you need to function. A good natural weight loss doctor can put you on a healthy diet without making you sacrifice food groups.

A healthy diet is a long-term commitment that involves making better choices for your meals. The two food groups people cut most often are meats and carbohydrates. If you do choose to remove these two food groups, ensure you alternatives sources for important nutrients.

While you can certainly stay healthy and lose weight on a vegetarian diet, you need to obtain the nutrients you’d normally get from eating meats through other sources. For example, you can get the iron you need by eating plenty of dark leafy greens.

Carbohydrates break down into glucose and serve as a prime source of fuel for our bodies and our brains. Cutting down on carbs might be a good idea, but eliminating them altogether could cause you to deprive your body of fuel. Try to eat whole grains instead of refined carbohydrates like white bread. Whole grains are full of fiber and get absorbed more slowly into the body.

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