What is a Fad Diet?
The phrases food faddism and fad diet originally referred to idiosyncratic diets and eating patterns that promote short-term weight loss, usually with no concern for long-term weight maintenance, and enjoy temporary popularity.
Food fad is term originally used to describe simple, catchy diets that often focused on a single element such as cabbage, grapefruit or cottage cheese. In 1974, the term was defined as three categories of food fads.
- A particular food or food group is exaggerated and purported to cure specific diseases.
- Foods are eliminated from an individual’s diet because they are viewed as harmful.
- An emphasis is placed on eating certain foods to express a particular lifestyle.
In recent years food fad has become a popular pejorative term used by the mainstream nutritional and medical community to dismiss ideas and research that differ from their world view. A fad by definition involves a quick and brief surge in popularity. The Atkins diet and the Paleo diet both emerged in the 1970s, yet mainstream nutritionists disparage them as fad diets four decades later. Other acknowledged fad diets, such as the “Master Cleanse Diet” and “Apple Cider Vinegar Diet” are from books written in the 1970s and 1950s, respectively, indicating age of the origin of the diet does not seem to be a factor in categorizing a diet as fad.
FamilyDoctor.org, a publication of the American Academy of Family Physicians, for example proclaims that fad diets “typically don’t result in long-term weight loss and they are usually not very healthy. In fact, some of these diets can actually be dangerous to your health. They then offer a long list that includes low-carbohydrate diets in general and Atkins, the Zone diet and three others by name. One scientific study contradicts the website’s assertions. A 2007 study published in the Journal of American Medicine concluded that overweight premenopausal women age 25 – 50 without any heart, renal, kidney, or diabetic disease on the Atkins diet lost more weight than those on specific low-fat diets after 12 months. The researchers concluded that low-carbohydrate diets are a “feasible alternative recommendation for weight loss.” However, this study did not compare the Atkins diet to calorie restriction diets.
(info from Wikipedia)
My Thoughts: As long as I have been giving weight loss advice I have believed that the only true diet worth being on and taking seriously is a diet in which you limit your caloric intake. To me it seems pretty simple…if you burn more calories than you consume, you will lose weight. I don’t understand why people can’t see that. I think a lot of it is due to laziness. People would rather look for “the easy way out” instead of exercising and counting their calories. It does take effort and most people would rather believe in a miracle system. And a lot of them do work…for a short time. But as soon as you get off of them, you blow up like a balloon! What do you guys think?
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