Crash diets have long been touted as unhealthy, and in general, self-defeating.
That’s because most of the weight lost from these programs is in the form of water and muscle – not fat. As such, the pounds quickly come back once the diet is stopped.
Furthermore, your metabolism slows down due the loss of lean mass, making it more likely for you to gain even more weight than before.
Now, while all of these things are true, it turns out that crash diets may actually have some health benefits. In fact, experts at Aberdeen’s Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen, claim that these very low calorie (i.e. less than 800/day) programs actually result in significant weight loss, an improvement of blood pressure, an increase in fertility, and a reduction of asthma symptoms.
How can this be?
Well, after reviewing 32 studies which examined the long-term effects of crash diets, researchers at the university came to the conclusion that these diets do indeed offer long-term benefits. Furthermore, this “knock-on” effect was observed for up to 5 years after stopping the diet.
And while the findings are both significant (and exciting, to say the least) I wouldn’t recommend that you get on the next fad to shed your unwanted weight. Sure, it may not be as bas as we once thought, but as mentioned throughout this website, slow and steady wins the race.
With that said, perhaps doing a crash diet for quick weight loss right before getting on a long-term, more sustainable program wouldn’t be such a bad thing to experiment with (especially not after these recent findings).