Fad Diets – The Truth and The 10 Most Popular Ones

Fad diets have been under the spotlight in the recent years, and not always in a good way. With the explosion of social media, especially Instagram, fad diets have gained a lot of attention, and also gained a ton of bad reputation.

But what even is a fad diet? Are fad diets that bad or do they actually work? I’m going to try and answer all these questions and more in this post. So, grab a cup of decaf latter and buckle up, because I’m going to go in-depth trying to answer every single question you may have about fad diets right here.

What Are Fad Diets?

What are fad diets?

Fad diets are very popular diets that promise rapid weight loss and other health benefits. They are stylish diets that people will love to post about them on Facebook and Instagram, and their results are almost always accompanied by hashtags.

Fad diets are often non-traditional in both how they work and what they promise. They are fashionable and very beloved on the Internet, which is one of the reasons they are also heavily criticized.

The main criticism for fad diets is that they often have no sound science behind them, or even worse, are often backed up by what can only be described as pseudo science.

They are also criticized because people often follow a fad diet because of a recommendation from an influencer than a doctor. A fad diet can eliminate whole food groups and be quite unhealthy, and it can backfire more quickly than people realize.

Some fad diets also have strange rules, such as allowing only certain foods as long as they are eaten with certain other foods, and some fad diets focus on a certain particular food. Some fad diets recommend only eating at certain times or in a certain way.

Many fad diets lack major nutrients and can put the dieters in risk of developing serious health problems later in life due to the lack of receiving the proper amounts of these nutrients. Some fad diets also improper regulations regarding the amounts of foods that can be consumed and allow either too much or too few, and both scenarios are problematic.

The basis for many of these fad diets are also puzzling, such as blaming particular hormones for weight gain or claiming to manipulate the body’s chemistry as if the diet is a cheat code that will magically get you the results.

Some claim that, in the best-case scenario, fad diets are ineffective temporary solutions to lifelong problems, and in the worst-case scenario, a marketing (or a con) scheme that manipulates people’s ambitions for monetary gains through hyping up certain products and can leave people with serious health issues later in life.

Whether fad diets are a good thing or a bad thing is up to you in the end. What I am going to do is to try and remain impartial and only give you the facts in this post so you can make up your mind yourself. Whether you decide to go for a fad diet or to completely stand against them at the end is your call.

6 Basic Types of Fad Diets

There are 6 basic types of fad diets that we have seen gaining popularity over the last couple of decades. These are:

  1. Controlled Carbs
    • Atkins Diet
    • Sugar Busters
    • The Zone Diet
  2. High Carbs/Low Fat
    • The Pritikin Principle
    • The Good Carbohydrate Revolution
    • Dr.Dean Ornish’s Eat More, weigh less diet
  3. Controlled Portion Sizes
    • Volumetrics Weight-control Plan
    • Dr.Shapiro’s Picture Perfect Weight Loss Plan
  4. Food Combining
    • Fit for life
    • Suzanne Sommers’ Somersizing
  5. Liquid-only diets
    • SlimFast Diet
    • Cambridge Diet
  6. Diet Pills or Herbal Remedies
    • Metabolife 356
    • Dexatrim Natural
    • Hydroxycut

You can go to any list of fad diets and all the diets you will find will certainly fall under on these categories. This is not to say this is a good or a bad thing.

Let’s take a look at some of the most popular fad diets nowadays.

Top 10 Fad Diets

bowl of salad from one of the fad diets

There are so many fad diets right now that it’s kind of difficult to cover all of them. Luckily, we don’t have to. Some fad diets are just too silly that most people can just take 30 seconds to figure out that it’s not even worth their time to continue reading/watching the explanation of the diet.

We are going to only discuss the 10 top fad diets. These diets have set the fad diet definition and become so popular that some of them are now recognized as completely legit diets that people can achieve their goals on.

We’ll start with the diet that started it all. Yes, you know what I’m talking about.

1. Vegan Diet

Vegan diet is one of the most popular fad diets

The vegan diet needs no introduction, it’s one of the most famous diets ever and one of the most successful fad diets of all time. By our definition of a fad diet as a popular diet, the vegan diet can be considered a fad diet, the question of whether it’s still just a fad diet or if it’s more than that is up to you.

The Vegan Diet includes on plant-based foods and excludes meats, processed foods, and everything else. This means that you can eat vegetables, fruits, soy, legumes, and nuts on the food. The vegan diet strictly prohibits any animal products like meat, dairy, and eggs. It also prohibits any animal byproducts such as honey an, animal-derived vitamins and Omega-3s, gelatin, Carmine, shellac, lactose, whey, and casein.

There are now plenty of research about the vegan diet, and while the diet is still a bit controversial, it’s well-known now that diets that constitute of plant-based foods only are more effective for losing weight than other traditional low-fat diets.

The main concerns with the vegan diet now are that if the dieter doesn’t plan their diet properly, they could miss out on essential nutrients such as calcium, iron, and Vitamin B12 more easily than they would have if they were on other diets.

The difference between the vegan diet and the vegetarian diet is that while both diets prohibits consuming animal meats, the vegan diet prohibits consuming animal byproducts while the vegetarian diet allows it.

This means that things like dairy, cheese, milk, and eggs are allowed on the vegetarian diet but not allowed on the vegan diet.

It’s also been proven that the vegan diet is fine on the long-term and doesn’t lead to any serious health issues if you do the meal planning right and pay attention to your micro nutrients.

The vegan diet is still considered a vegan diet because it’s still very much popular online, but it has aged far better than most fad diets do, proving that it can deliver on its promises without putting the dieters at risk of serious health issues.

2. Atkins Diet

Atkins diet meal example one of the popular fad diets

The Atkins diet is a low-carb diet that claims to help people lose weight without having to do calorie counting. Losing weight on a low-carb diet without counting calories or doing micronutrient calculations has already been proven to be effective by more than 20 studies over the last two decades, so the Atkins diet is not the first low-carb diet and will definitely not be the last.

The Atkins diet was originally criticized due to its high saturated fat content, but later on, it was proved that saturated fat is actually harmless (4). Keep in mind that the Atkins diet was first introduced in 1972, so it took quite a while for research to catch up.

The Atkins diet is a 4-phase plan that promises rapid weight loss, and it goes on as follow:

Phases of the Atkins Diet:

  1. Induction Phase
    • Reducing the carbs intake to less than 20 grams per day for two consecutive weeks. You can eat high-fat, high-protein, and low-carb vegetables.
  2. Balancing Phase
    • You can start adding more nuts, low-carb veggies, and small amounts of fruits back into your meals.
  3. Fine-Tuning Phase
    • This phase starts only when you are quite close to your weight goals. Here you can start adding more carbs to your diet until your weight loss slows down.
  4. Maintenance Phase
    • Only eat healthy carbs from now on. Your body should be able to tolerate it without regaining much weight.

The other concern about the Atkins diet is that it’s unnecessarily complicated. Losing weight isn’t easy, for sure, but this doesn’t mean it should be such a complicated procedure.

Many people who follow the atkins diet simply skip the induction phase completely and include plenty of veggies and fruits from the beginning, and this has proven to be just as effective. Others prefer to stay in the induction phase indefinitely, and this basically means they are following a very low-carb keto diet.

Speaking of the Keto diet…

3. Ketogenic Diet

Getting enough protein is one of the most important Keto diet tips

The Ketogenic diet is one of the most popular diets nowadays, and no one could’ve expected that this diet in particular was going to be so popular so quickly. This is because it’s not the first one of its kind and not the most extreme one, so why has it become so successful?

The Ketogenic Diet is a very low-carb, high-fat diet that is quite similar in theory to the atkins diet but without the complicated phases and stages.

This diet relies on drastically reducing carbohydrate intake and replacing it with fats. The goal of this is to put your body into ketosis, which is a metabolic state where your body relies on getting its energy from burning fats, not sugar or carbs. The Ketosis state will also turn your fat into ketones in the liver that can supply your brain with energy.

The Ketogenic diet shifts your body’s metabolism away from carbs, and this shift does not work for anyone. Since this shift will often include sharp drops in the levels of your blood sugar and insulin levels, people with diabetes need to be more cautious when switching to the keto diet.

Check out these 7 Keto diet tips before you start your diet.

There are many variations of the Ketogenic diet available, the following are the 4 most popular variations:

  1. Standard Ketogenic Diet
    • This is the standard very low (or zero) carb, high-fat diet. It typically consists of 75% fat, 20% protein, and 5% carbs or less.
  2. Cyclical Ketogenic Diet
    • This diet involves periods where you increase your intake of carbs and then lower it back. It works in cycles, and the most common form is a weekly cycle that consists of 5 ketogenic days and 2 high-carb days.
  3. Targeted Ketogenic Diet
    • This diet allows its dieters to add carbs around workouts
  4. High-Protein Ketogenic Diet
    • This is quite similar to the standard ketogenic diet but with more protein. The ratio in the high-protein ketogenic diet is 60% fat, 35% protein, and around 5% carbs.

The Ketogenic diet has been studied extensively over the last two decades, and has been proven to be effective. The weight loss on the Ketogenic diet is more rapid than it is with other diets, but there is still the issue that if you decide to quit the diet once your reach your weight goal, you are more likely to regain at least some of the weight lost.

With that being said, the ketogenic diet is definitely one of the best fad diets out there. Unlike other fad diets, it actually works, it was studied extensively, and was able to gain the respect of the health community enough to be taken as a serious diet.

4. Paleo Diet

fad diet/ fad diets

If you are not new to this blog, then you already know about the Paleo Diet, but since this is an introduction to all fad diets, let’s discuss it again anyways.

The Paleo diet is one of the more popular current fad diets. It consists of only foods that our ancestors could have eaten in the Paleolithic Diet. If we had to put it in one of the types of the fad diets we discussed before, it would belong to the low-carb type.

The Diet is based on the concept that our diet in the last 10,000 years or so has evolved much faster than our bodies could adapt, and this is why we have so many modern health issues like obesity, heart disease, and diabetes.

The Paleo Diet recommends you eat as our hunters-gatherers ancestors did, and this means only natural, whole, unprocessed foods. The paleo diet is a low-carb diet since most of the foods on the Paleo Diet Food List are plant-based foods like vegetables and fruits.

Unfortunately, there is not enough scientific evidence behind the paleo diet, and the main reason for that is that the diet is still relatively new. It has only started gaining popularity a couple of years ago or so.

However, despite the lack of strong scientific evidence behind it, the Paleo diet is not a bad fad diet by any means, and the reason is simple; there is nothing really new with the paleo diet. The diet simple recommends eating whole, unprocessed foods and staying away from any food that can be even remotely problematic.

It’s even a bit easier to follow than the keto diet since it doesn’t totally eliminate carbs. It also has no complicated phases or strict guidelines to follow. You just need to eat sensibly.

The Paleo diet does make some bold claims about being the solution to modern health issues problems, but if you go into it just thinking about eating healthy and seeing how things go from there, you should expect only good things.

Overall, the Paleo diet is a good fad diet as long as you keep things in moderation and don’t take it to the extreme. I recommend you take a moment to check our Complete Paleo Diet Guide here as well, it has everything you need to start today if you’re interested.

5. The Mediterranean Diet

example of foods from the mediterranean diet as a fad diet

The Mediterranean diet is more of a way of eating than it is a strict diet. This is why there is no single explanation for the Mediterranean diet. It’s a diet that is based on how the people living in countries bordering the Mediterranean sea eat.

This diet is typically high in vegetables, fruits, beans, nuts and seeds, whole grains, and olive oils. It has a weekly intake of fish, poultry, beans, eggs, and dairy products. It limits the intake of red meat and replaces it with a higher intake of vegetables and fruits.

The Mediterranean diet focuses more on plant-based foods than on meat-based ones with the exception of seafood. It also promotes the consumption of healthy fats, which are harmless for your health, unlike the saturated and transfats that can be found in processed foods which have been linked to heart disease.

The diet also allows for a limited intake of red wine and replaces salt with spices and herbs.

There has been some research about the Mediterranean diet, but not enough to grant it a position among the big boys. However, more than one body of research has shown the diet is effective in reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease, which is why it’s often recommended to people suffering from heart conditions.

Unfortunately, since there is no control over portion sizes, it’s easy to gain weight on the diet rather than losing it if you are not careful. Overall, the Mediterranean diet is considered a healthy diet.

You can get a complete guide to the Mediterranean diet here complete with 10 steps for optimal health.

6. The 5:2 Diet

fad diet/ fad diets

The 5:2 diet is also known as the Fast Diet, and it’s one of the most popular intermittent fasting diets nowadays. Intermittent fasting can’t really be considered the same as a fad diet, but when combined with restrict calories in certain days, it can be.

This is why the 5:2 diet is considered one of the current fad diets; the diet gives you five days of normal eating and two days of restricting your calorie intake to only 500-600 calories.

However, the diet cares only about when you eat and how man calories you consume and not about what you actually eat to reach the calorific goal. You can choose any two days in the week to restrict your eating, but consistency is preferable, of course.

The diet does emphasize that you eat “normally” in your five days and not treat them as cheat days. If you eat more than needed in those five days, you will still gain weight, even with the calorie restrictions on the other two days.

In return, the diet promises some impressive health benefits including weight loss, decreased inflammation, reduced insulin resistance, and even improved blood lipids.

The diet is most effective when combined with healthy eating on those 5 days, meaning you should try increasing the percentage of vegetables and fruits in your meals and replace processed meals and junk foods with whole foods.

The diet also recommends no specific way to eat on the fasting days, and instead, tells dieters to just test different things until they find out what works best for them. Of course it’s a given that on the fasting days you should stick to nutritious, high-fiber, and high-proteins foods.

Fasting is a very old tradition, so there is plenty of scientific evidence that has proven its benefits (7), and the 5:2 diet just try to utilize intermittent fasting to get good results quickly. It’s considered an effective way to lose weight and improve your metabolism.

Since the diet is quite simple, it’s preferred by many people who find it easier to stick on the diet than a conventional low-fat or calorie-restricted diet. More research is still needed on the effects of this specific form of intermittent fasting on the long term.

You can get a complete guide to the Intermittent fasting diet (5:2) here with everything you need to start the same day.

7. The Dukan Diet

fad diet/ fad diets

The Dukan diet, also known as the Dukan method, is one of the less-popular fad diets, but it looks like it’s about to have its moment in the sun. The Dukan diet is similar in concept to the Paleo diet but different in execution, and much more complicated.

The diet proposes a healthy eating plan based on how our primitive hunter-gatherer ancestors used to eat thousands of years ago. The diet limits you to eat from a list of only 100 foods, 72 of which are animal-based and 28 come from plants.

The diet was first introduced to the world by the french nutritionist Pierre Dukan as a protein-based nutrition plan that can help people lose weight and become healthier.

The Dukan diet is based on the theory that we can lose weight by increasing our intake of protein.

The logic is that protein is low in calories, makes people feel full, and gives people more energy, therefore, protein-based meals will have fewer calories but more energy and will make people feel full so they need to eat less.

The Dukan diet restricts your intakes of carbs and fat and puts the body in a starvation-like state which supposedly forces the body to use the fat stores as energy instead of carbs and glucose.

The diet is also a bit complicated as it consists of four phases.

The four phases of the Dukan Diet:

  1. Attack Phase
    • Shoots for rapid weight loss – around 2-3 KGs or 4.4-6.6 Pounds within 2-10 days.
  2. Cruise Phase
    • Adds more veggies but no fruits. Aims to help the dieter achieve their target bodyweight more gradually.
    • Adds a number of different foods and aims to lose help the dieter lose 2-5 pounds per week for 10-15 weeks.
  3. Consolidation
    • You can eat unlimited proteins and veggies. Limited amounts of fruit, cheese, and whole-grain bread are allowed.
    • Aims to avoid regaining weight instead of losing more weight.
  4. Stabilization
    • A long-term plan that should become part of your lifestyle, and aims to help the dieter get back to a close-to-normal lifestyle and diet.

All phases of the Dukan diet involves daily exercise.

The Dukan diet is one of the more controversial fad diets right now, and it doesn’t have much scientific evidence supporting its bold claims regarding the benefits it offers to the dieters.

8. The Zone Diet

fad diet/ fad diets

The Zone diet is one of the fad diets that have been around for a while. The Zone diet tells its followers to stick to eating a diet that consists of 40% carbs, 30% protein, and 30% fat.

The carbs you eat should have a low glycemic index. What this means is that these foods should release sugar slowly into the blood, and this will keep you fuller for longer. The Proteins should also be lean and the fats should be monounsaturated.

The Zone Diet was developed more than 30 years ago by Dr. Barry Sears, an American biochemist. He published his book, the Zone, in 1995, and it became an instant hit.

The diet doesn’t have any specific phases and is designed to be followed for a lifetime, not just a specific period.

You are not allowed to eat high-sugar fruits (bananas, grapes, raisins, etc), starchy vegetables (carrots, potatoes, etc), refined or processed carbs (bread, bagels, etc), foods with added sugars (candy, cakes, cookies, etc), soft drinks, or coffee and tea.

The diet makes some bold claims about its health benefits, though. It claims that it can lose weight quickly, prevent heart diseases, reduce inflammation, slow down aging, and even improve your performance.

The Zone Diet has been under heavy criticism from the health community ever since it surfaced, and there has been very little scientific evidence to back up its claims.

9. South Beach Diet

fad diet/ fad diets

The South Beach diet first became popular in the mid-1990s thanks to the work of Dr. Arthur Agatston, a cardiologist from Florida, that has used his work in heart research to develop the diet.

He developed the diet to fix what he thought was wrong with the Atkins diet, which is the high amount of saturated fat allowed on the diet. So, he created a diet specifically for the overweight, diabetic, and prediabetic people that can help them lose weight easily and can reduce their risk of heart disease.

The South Beach Diet is rich in low-glycemic index carbs, lean proteins, and unsaturated fats. He popularized the diet by prescribing it to his patients, then he published a book about it in 2003 which became an instant bestseller around the world.

The South Beach Diet consists of 3 phases:

  1. Phase 1
    • It lasts for 14 days, and only limits fruit, grains, and other high-carb food.
    • Aims to help people lose 8-13 pounds (3.5-6 kilograms) in those two weeks
    • You can eat three meals and two snacks per day. Those meals should consist of a combination of lean protein and vegetables.
  2. Phase 2
    • This phase lasts until you achieve your target weight.
    • Expect to lose 1-2 pounds (0.5-1 kilograms) per week.
    • You can add back limited portions of fruit and good carbs.
    • Certain types of alcohol allowed in limited quantities.
  3. Phase 3
    • Starts once you reach your target weight.
    • Occasional treats allowed
    • Regular exercise

There is little scientific evidence to support the claims of the south beach diet, and the diet was also shown to have some drawbacks. While fats in general isn’t harmful, and is actually necessary for your health, the diet has potentially harm amounts of it.

The foods in the diet also have a high ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fats, and this high ratio has been linked to inflammation and some heart problems.

10. The Volumetrics Diet

fad diet/ fad diets

The Volumetrics diet is an eating plan that aims to help people quit their on- and off-dieting by following a healthy lifestyle based on nutritious food and regular exercise than following a certain diet for a few weeks or months, quitting it, and then jumping on to another diet.

The Diet was developed by Dr. Barabara Rolls, and it is centered around the energy density of foods. It relies on foods with low-energy density and high water content. In other words, it relies on low-calorie foods like vegetables and fruits.

The main concept is that you can eat as much as you want of these low-calories foods to eliminate feelings of hunger, fatigue, and depression. She also believes that by sticking to these foods, you will lower your over-all calorie intake which should result in weight loss.

The diet’s promise is a steady weight loss of 1 to 2 pounds every week for as long as you stay on the plan, and it promises that this weight will not be regained easily.

The Volumetrics diet is not an easy diet to follow for two main reasons; it requires home cooking for every meal – which is healthy but needs a ton of effort every single day, and it requires you to track your calorie intake for every thing you eat every day, which is easier said than done – at least from my own experience.

The Volumetrics diet does have plenty of research behind it and proves its results. The diet’s promises are very reasonable and research has shown them to be achievable without a ton of effort.

The Volumetrics diet is considered one of the better fad diets out there, so much so that many people don’t consider it a fad diet – or even a diet at all for that matter, and rather, think of it as a lifelong healthy lifestyle.

Clear Guidelines For Any Diet

There will be new fad diets every day. There will be influencers you trust that will recommend one or more of the current fad diets. There will always be misinformation flying around in the community.

To make sure you stay healthy, you should always use your common sense to judge a fad diet. Luckily, this is actually pretty easy once you know how to spot a fad diet and how to spot a healthy diet – be it a fad diet or an unpopular one. Let’s see how you can spot a bad fad diet and what makes for a good diet.

How to Spot a Bad Fad Diet

It’s kind of amazing that in the age of Internet, so many people are following unhealthy diets while it’s so easy to find out if your diet is really doing you more harm than good.

Typically, bad diets – whether it’s a fad diet or not – share some common characteristics that are very easy to spot.

Here are the warning signs that make it clear that the fad diet you are reading about is an unhealthy diet:

  • Promises a Quick Fix

Nothing in life comes free, and anything that will actually get you results takes time and effort. This is a general rule that can’t be any more true than it is in diets.

  • Promotes a Magical combination of foods or a miracle foods

Your body is a very complicated piece of machinery that needs so many nutrients that you can only get by varying the food you eat. As a rule of thumb, the more colors your meal has, the healthier it is. There is no superior food and no magical combination of foods.

  • Says that foods can change body chemistry.

Your body’s chemistry has evolved over thousands and thousands of years, anyone that promises it can change that in a day, week, or month with a diet is straight-up lying to you.

  • Excludes complete food groups or nutrients

Sugar, carbs, fat, and all other nutrients are essential for your body and your well being. Any diet that eliminates complete food groups and prevents your body from getting all the nutrients is a bad fad diet.

  • Focuses only on weight loss

Losing weight doesn’t come alone, it comes as a natural result of well-balanced nutrition, plenty of exercise, and rest. If everything about the diet focuses only on weight loss, you have got yourself a bad fad diet right there.

  • Many Testimonials, few scientific studies

If a diet is making claims based only on the testimonials of those who followed it and got amazing results, this is a major red flag. If there is no good body of scientific research, studies, and peer-reviewed papers backing up the diet, it’s automatically a bad fad diet.

With that being said, scientific proof always takes time to prove our theories, but when it comes to our health, it’s really not wise to turn yourself into a lab rat voluntarily.

If a fad diet is backed up by a single or even a few studies, this is also a warning sign. Take a look at those studies. Were they peer-reviewed? Do they come from trusted resources like credible universities? How were they sponsored? If a study is sponsored by a food company, I wouldn’t really trust it, and I don’t think you should, either.

The key to a healthy diet and sustained weight loss is a balanced nutrition. A balanced nutrition can be easily achieved through following some general guidelines, so let’s take a look at those.

How to Spot a Good Fad Diet

A Good fad diet will be a good diet in general. Meaning it will have some things in common that you will also find with well-established and scientifically-proven diets.

  • You lose weight more slowly

The most you can expect to lose weight on a diet is about 1 or 2 pounds per week. Your body needs time to adjust, and any diet that promises a faster weight loss than that should not be taken seriously.

  • Has plenty of scientific research behind it

A good fad diet will have plenty of research that are backing it up. Any fad diets that work will have studies, peer-reviewed papers, and scientific research from trusted institutions by trusted scientists and academics.

These studies will also be funded by public or government organizations that are interested in public health and not food corporations with their own agendas.

  • Has something of everything

A balanced diet should have something of everything. It should have healthy fats, carbs, proteins, and all the other nutrients. This can only be achieved through consuming foods from diverse food groups.

  • Doesn’t Skip Meals

Skipping meals is never a good sign in a diet. You don’t need to eat a certain number of meals, but you still shouldn’t skip your essentials, like your breakfast.

  • Isn’t overly simple

Life isn’t simple, and neither is your diet. If a diet seems almost too simple, something is not right. Our bodies are complicated and our health is not a simple matter, but if a diet draws simple conclusions from complex medical research, it means it’s not a good diet.

  • Doesn’t require you to spend lots of money

Normally, diets shouldn’t require you to buy certain stuff – such as certain pills or a piece of over-priced equipment. If the diet requires you to spend lots of money on anything besides high-quality food, it’s more of a scam or a marketing scheme than an actual healthy diet.

This also includes courses, seminars, and meal plans that you need to buy, in case this isn’t obvious already.

  • Isn’t only endorsed by people behind a screen

You need to understand that most famous people behind screens – be it TV or your phone screen – will do a lot of things for the money, like recommending a certain diet. They will also do the same things to go viral or become trendy, because this means more followers that they can sell stuff to.

A healthy diet should be endorsed by trusted people in the medical community, not people on the media. Media people can help get the message across, but you shouldn’t take health advice from someone that all they know is look pretty for the camera.

  • Recommends Exercise and Sleep

Any healthy diet must be accompanied by exercise and rest for the best results. You should know that this is needed not only to lose weight, but also to keep the weight you lost from coming back.

  • Can be maintained long-term

You should be able to stay on the diet for the long-term. This means you should face no issues staying on the diet for years.

Yes, years, not weeks or even months. I’m not saying you must stay on it for years, but I’m saying that the diet should be sustainable over the long term. This also means that you shouldn’t be feeling pressured while on the diet.

Related Questions

Is Keto a fad diet?

The Keto diet is absolutely a fad diet. It’s extremely low in carbohydrates, high in fat, and it aims to change the way your body functions.

It puts the body in a state of emergency called Ketosis where the body relies on burning fat to get its energy. The Keto Diet was the OG diet that helped fad diets become what they are today. It’s also incredibly popular and fashionable, and a lot of people follow it only on Instagram.

How long should you do Keto?

You should do Keto for at least three months to start seeing results. Your body takes usually two to six weeks to get adapted to the Keto diet and go fully into the Ketosis state, but to really see some results, you need to follow the ketogenic diet fully for at least three months.

Will I gain weight If I stop Keto?

It’s likely you will gain weight after stopping the Keto diet and go back to your previous eating routine. The same can be said for any fad diet, you can expect to regain some of the weight lost on the diet once you quit the diet and go back to your normal eating routine.

Are there Cheat Meals on Keto?

No, there are no cheat meals or cheat days on Keto. The Ketogenic diet doesn’t have space for cheat meals or cheat days, and cheating on the keto diet can really derail your efforts and slow down your progress as it can virtually reset the diet’s timeline back to the zero point, which is definitely not something you want when trying to adapt your body to a new diet.

What are the long term effects of fad diets?

Some of the negative long-term effects of a bad fad diet can include dehydration, digestive problems, malnutrition, and fatigue.

Fad diets have not been studied in the long-term enough to find out whether they are sustainable over a number of years and whether they can put the dieter in the risk of serious health issues later in their lives.

When Did fad diets start?

Fad diets started in the 1930s. The first diet that we can truly call a “fad diet” is the “Hollywood Diet” which was basically the first low-calorie diet plan. This diet plan involved eating grapefruit and its juice with every meal.

Not surprisingly, the diet was popularized by people who were very interested in the success of their grapefruit business. Fad diets have become a stable of western society ever since, with new diets gaining popularity for a few years or decades before dying down.

This concludes our discussion of fad diets. I hope you found this helpful and that you have gained an idea of what fad diets are. You are free to follow any of the diets discussed here, but please consider discussing it with your doctor first – especially if you have a pre-existing health condition.

If you are reading this in the times of the COVID-19, I personally don’t recommend starting a fad diet right now and just sticking with general health guidelines like eating lots of vegetables and fruits.

If you have any questions, feel free to ask us in a comment below or contact us here. We will do our best to get back to you as soon as possible.


1- Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

2. Family Doctor – Nutrition for Weight Loss

3. The Vegan Diet – The NHS

4. Meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies evaluating the association of saturated fat with cardiovascular disease. Siri-Tarino PW1Sun QHu FBKrauss RM.

5. 23 Studies on Low Carb and Low Fad Diets

6. The ketogenic diet: one decade later. Freeman JM1Kossoff EHHartman AL.

7. Intermittent fasting dissociates beneficial effects of dietary restriction on glucose metabolism and neuronal resistance to injury from calorie intake. Anson RM1Guo Zde Cabo RIyun TRios MHagepanos AIngram DKLane MAMattson MP.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.