Most people who have tried to lose weight have attempted a fad diet or two. These diets typically force you to eat certain foods for a specific length of time, normally a week or so, in hopes that you will see a significant drop in your weight. While these diets may seem harmless, they can actually do more harm than good, and you’re likely to put all of the weight back on that you lost once you return to your normal diet. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is, so the following fad diets should be avoided at all costs.


The Tapeworm Diet

This diet was made popular in the 1950’s, and it involved the dieter swallowing actual tapeworms. The premise behind it was that the tapeworm would consume the calories and the person’s body would not have a chance to absorb the excess calories. Not only is this diet absolutely disgusting, it’s actually extremely dangerous. Having a parasite in your body can lead to weight loss, but at a serious cost to good health. A myriad of problems can arise such as fatigue, cramps, diarrhea, and even an intestinal block if the tapeworm gets large enough. This one is the worst of the worst and should not even be considered.


The Cabbage Soup Diet

Many people who have tried fad diets have tried this diet along the way. The cabbage soup diet promises that you’ll lose at least 10 pounds and consists of eating cabbage soup for an entire week with different fruits and vegetables for select days. While this isn’t the most dangerous diet, it is not going to be effective in losing weight in the long term. The 10 pounds that you do lose is going to be all water weight, and maybe even some muscle mass since the diet does not include very much protein to retain muscle.


Cotton Ball Diet

This extreme diet is also extremely dangerous. Popularized by YouTube among teenage girls, the cotton ball diet involves the dieter swallowing cotton balls that have been soaked in some type of juice or smoothie in hopes that it will allow the person to feel full and not want to eat anything. Much like the tapeworm diet, the cotton ball diet can lead to serious health problems and even death in some case. The reason it is so dangerous is because the cotton balls can get stuck throughout the digestive system, which is a breeding ground for bacteria. Stick to eating cotton candy every once in awhile and leave actual cotton balls for their intended hygiene-related purposes.


Instead of cutting any food out, learn the power of eating in moderation and increase your daily physical activity. Leave the fad diets alone and always talk to your doctor before you begin any significant changes to your diet.