A United States Gallup study in 2013 showed that 51% of all adults polled wanted to lose weight. But only 25% were seriously working towards that goal. The danger lies in that 26% difference.

Everyone already knows that a healthy body means eating sensibly, proper diet and nutrition, and at least a couple of hours of strenuous exercise every week.

You should also drink lots of water and get plenty of rest. But today’s fast cut lifestyle pushes an “I want it now” mentality. So there are plenty of unhealthy and downright dangerous weight loss methods that promise to melt away the pounds in record time.

Avoid the following 10 unhealthy tactics for losing weight, and ignore their miracle claims.

# 10. Cleansing Diets

orange drinkMost cleansing or detox diets promise extremely fast weight loss. The claims are based on a strategy of drastically limiting what you eat. The amount of nutrients, minerals and vitamins you need for healthy living are not ingested, since your daily calorie intake is extremely low. Your body goes into starvation mode, and you drop weight.

What They Don’t Tell You

While there are healthy ways to detoxify your body, many popular cleansing diets are dangerous at best. In any diet where you limit the number of calories you ingest to an unhealthy level, multiple health problems can arise. From a simple lack of energy to severe cardiovascular and gastrointestinal diseases, the unhealthy effects which accompany most cleansing, detox diets are definitely not worth the short-term gains.

9. Tapeworm Diet

Taenia saginata_tapewormMore common in Australia and Europe than America, by ingesting one or several tiny tapeworms, you can drop any unwanted fat and weight without exercise or diet. You continue to eat whatever you like, with your tapeworm digesting up to half of it for you. And this does work, helping you lose weight rapidly.

What They Don’t Tell You

Aside from the gross factor, when you dig a little deeper you discover that you have to eat partially rotted meat or feces that is infected with tapeworms. Yes, you read that correctly. And amazingly, otherwise sensible human beings use this dangerous weight loss method regularly.

The dangers obviously come from immediate infection after ingesting feces or rotted meat. And if your tapeworms breed your weight loss can become drastic, with a long list of health risks at your disposal. These include malnutrition, indigestion, protein deficiencies, a potbellied appearance, intestinal bursting and even death.

8. Drunkorexia

wine glassBy limiting your caloric intake or even fasting totally for a day or two before a big night or weekend of drinking, you ensure that you don’t take in too many calories. Restricting caloric intake is the quickest way to ensure weight loss, so you not only have a great time out with your friends, but you also lose weight in the process.

What They Don’t Tell You

There are so many problems with this approach. Drinking too much alcohol is a health risk by itself. When you combine an unhealthy body deprived of nutrients and vitamins with binge drinking and starvation eating, expect mental malfunctions, a dangerously weakened immune system, possibility for acute alcohol poisoning and an increased risk of physical injuries.

7. Starvation, Extended Fasting

Since your body is constantly burning calories, if you don’t give it any, you will lose weight quickly. Your body continues to operate and function normally, you accelerate your fat burning, and the pounds drop away.

What They Don’t Tell You

Intentional starvation is never the answer for healthy weight loss. Your body continually heals, repairs and regenerates, and you need a steady supply of protein and healthy fats. When you do not give your body what it needs nutritionally for an extended period of time, fatigue, muscle degeneration, a weakened immune system, sleep disturbance, hair loss and other problems arise. A 24 hour fast is healthy, but anything beyond that is dangerous.

6. Laxatives

By taking prescribed or even across the counter laxatives, supposedly you will prevent your body from absorbing any calories when you eat. You will also shed water weight, watching fat and unwanted weight literally waste away.

What They Don’t Tell You

When you eat, the calories in your food are ingested into your bloodstream long before laxatives can take effect. Laxatives only remove your water weight. Short-term problems from using laxatives for weight loss include extreme dehydration and hemorrhoids. Extended use can lead to renal failure, pancreatitis and intestinal paralysis, as well as Irritable Bowel Syndrome.

5. Diet Pills and Stimulants

red pillsBy simply popping a pill you supposedly jack up your heart rate and metabolism, and become a calorie and fat burning machine. There is no need to change your diet or exercise, as these miracle diet pills and stimulants do all the weight loss work for you.

What They Don’t Tell You

Energy drinks, diet pills and other stimulants, even when used in the short term, can lead to heart attacks and other coronary conditions, kidney failure, sleeplessness and even death.

4. The K-E Bride or Bikini Diet (Tube Feeding)

The promise of the bikini diet is that in 10 days you will lose all the weight that you want, and look absolutely stunning on your wedding day. This is also a favorite weight loss method to shed unwanted pounds quickly for a sexy summer bikini debut.

A tube through your nose provides fluids containing protein, fat and water. Kept in place 24 hours a day, after 10 days you have miraculously dropped all of your unwanted weight.

What They Don’t Tell You

On top of having to hide away for 10 straight days with a bag of fluid attach to your nose, you run the risk of serious kidney problems, bad breath, having absolutely no physical energy and painful constipation. Brides-to-be and beach-going bikini babes have even suffered from total kidney failure and future dangerous eating disorders after using this weight loss method, which limits you to an unhealthy 800 calories a day.

3. Sweat or Sauna Suits

fireGo ahead, just step into this ankle-to-neck full body sauna suit, and go about your normal activities. You supposedly sweat away fat and undesirable body weight, you never have to exercise or change your diet, and you look great in no time.

What They Don’t Tell You

As with laxatives above, all this does is deprive your body of water. Dehydration and spiked body temperature can cause a rash of problems. In one extreme case, a high school wrestler attempting to make his weight class employed a sauna suit. When his body was discovered, even though he had been dead more than 8 hours, his core body temperature was above 100 degrees.

2. Purging, Induced Vomiting

Stick your finger down your throat until you vomit, directly after eating. They say your body will get all the nutrients it needs, while you purge calories and food mass. You lose weight quickly, look slim and trim, and eat whatever you want.

What They Don’t Tell You

As with most unhealthy weight loss methods, the premise here is based on false data. Your body does absorb some nutrients and vitamins immediately upon eating. But the majority of the healthy components in your food takes time for your body to digest. By purging, you don’t allow the essential nutrients in your food to go to work creating a healthy body. Purging can cause ruptures, tears and ulcers in your stomach and esophagus. This dangerous and unhealthy weight loss method has also been linked to esophageal adenocarcinoma, a cancer which is often deadly.

And the Number 1 Weight Loss Method you should not Use:


smokingWhy not simply pick up a pack of smokes to lose weight? Since smoking increases your metabolism and decreases your appetite, you will burn more calories and eat less. Logically, this will cause you to lose fat and weight.

What They Don’t Tell You

Doctors have actually reported some patients telling them they began smoking as a weight loss strategy. Smoking is dangerous for so many reasons the Surgeon General in the US has forced cigarette manufacturers to put health warnings on every pack.

Being a little overweight is nowhere near as dangerous and potentially deadly as addictive smoking. Cigarette smoking causes 85% of all lung cancer, makes you and your clothes smell bad, and is linked to heart and skin disease and cancer.

Postscript: Healthy Weight Loss

Keeping a healthy body weight is really no mystery. Eating sensible portions, getting lots of liquids and rest, exercising and eating lots of fruits and vegetables is the key to burning fat and dropping unhealthy weight.

Remember, healthy weight loss means around 1% of your body weight per week. Don’t fall prey to the incredible claims made by some dangerous and possibly deadly weight loss trends.

Dropping that bothersome 10 or 20 pounds in two or three weeks may seem enticing. But when you deprive your body of the proper nutrition it needs to live and your “miracle diet” is over, the tendency is to put the weight right back on. This is because your body is craving the nutrients you have been missing, and you overeat to get as much nutrition as possible.

If you just remember that a healthy, balanced diet is the way to regulate your body weight, and steer clear of the 10 unhealthy weight loss methods listed above, you will reach your desired weight loss goals in the healthiest way possible. The bottom line here? If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.