15 Diet Trends And Fads That Are Helping You GAIN Weight

January 29, 2014  |  
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As we enter the last few days of January, one question remains. How is that diet plan going? If you’re anything like Drake was in his ‘Resolution, Revolution’ bit on SNL recently, you’ve relapsed more than once. Sure, it’s hard to stay on track when it comes to losing weight, but it’s even worse when we try to find shortcuts. While we get the results we want, they don’t last long, and the worst part about dieting is gaining all the weight you lost and more.

If you’re wondering why you haven’t seen any results, it could be the following reasons. Remember that when it comes to losing weight, it’s not about cutting out junk food here and there, it’s a lifestyle shift that won’t work without a little hard work and discipline. So no shortcuts, like the following:

 Counting Calories

When I was a teen (a whole six years ago), I would be in class taking notes with one binder and counting my calories in the other. Sure, it was a good way to track what I was eating, but it was also bad because I was obsessing about what I was eating. Counting calories drives you nuts and can cause stress which leads to serious weight gain. Not to mention that if you deny yourself certain foods too quickly, you can easily mess around and binge eat the same junk you try to avoid.

Liquid Diets

Liquid diets became popular in the 1950s, and were brought into the mainstream after stars like Beyoncé, Daisy Fuentes, and Sarah Jessica Parker swore by them in the mid 2000’s. Liquid detoxes may have worked for them, but they can cause a slew of problems like bladder infection and even make you feel faint. One of the most problematic effects of detoxing is the water weight you lose. Water weight is substantial along with glycogen, two tools your body stores as good carbs to keep your muscles and liver functioning properly. When you lose these emergency carbs, you have little to no energy, which causes you to eat more. If you don’t have the willpower or a good diet before detoxing, you are seriously setting yourself up for failure.

Ignoring ‘The Moderation Rule’ (Cheating)

Sometimes we get really hard on ourselves when we try to lose weight. For me, it was cutting out all junk food and fried chicken. For others, it may be ice cream or fries. When on your plan, you have to remember that you can enjoy a burger or fries every now and then–but in moderation. Moderation can be tough because to some it may be indulging in cake every weekend as a treat, or eating candy every couple of months. Whatever that your cheat meal is, remember that if it isn’t once in a while, you aren’t cheating.


Smoothies can be a great energy booster and serve as a healthy substitute for a meal. When it comes to making your own smoothies, remember that the smoothie diet is nothing without some good cardio. If you’re putting new elements like protein powder and peanut butter in them though, you should know it’s going to help muscle definition, but all that can cause you to gain weight. Some big brands like Pepsi and Coca-Cola stand by juice and smoothie brands, with Pepsi supplying Odwalla and Coca-Cola behind the popular Naked smoothies. But some Odwalla smoothies contain more than 41g of sugar, while Naked drinks were forced to remove the “All Natural” label after it was discovered that the company was including additives.

Buying Quick Gadgets

Our parents had the fads of jazzercising and thigh-masters, but now we have quick do-dads like Shake Weights and the second coming of Ab Belts that guarantee a killer six pack while just watching television. If you haven’t noticed, workout gadgets come and go. The money you use to pay for a quick fix can be used towards buying more greens or a gym membership.

D.I.Y. Tricks

I’m not sure when this started, but I remember a woman coming into my job in 2011 trying to invite me to a wrapping party. If you aren’t familiar with the term, it refers to wrapping your stomach with either a special cloth or saran wrap. If you do this several times a month (for a price), you’ll have a flat tummy. I haven’t tried this (because I really thought it was some creepy cult thing) but once again, it’s another shortcut that only cuts water weight.

Focusing On One Area

Focusing on one area is fine if you plan on attacking another part later on in a workout or in the week. Sure you want Michelle Obama’s arms, but what about your flabby legs or stomach? Nothing is worse than seeing results in just one area while the rest of your body falls behind. It’s similar to the men who workout their arms and end up with scrawny chicken legs. Remember to hit all your target areas in moderation. Focus on arms this week, move on to legs the following week and don’t forget about your midsection. Your body will thank you.

Going Vegan

Who knew it would be trendy to be vegan (blame Bey and Jay)? Okay, a lot of people, but going vegan is a lot more than just passing on things that don’t have a face. Just because you cut out meat doesn’t guarantee weight loss. Also, cutting your body from its regular nutrients can cause irregularities like problems with your colon and irritability. But on the bright side, you can go vegan and have options. Some vegan friendly products like tofu and Boca burgers are filled with fatty substitutes to replace the presence of meat and can help with your weight-loss journey.

Frying Your Veggies

If you aren’t a fan of raw veggies, steaming or baking them is usually a good substitute. Steaming is a better option when it comes to retaining the vitamins in veggies, while boiling and frying can take out a lot of the nutrients in them. Frying veggies are also the perfect element to a struggle plate and let’s face it, no one wants a struggle food plate.

Ignoring Weights

Many of us are terrified to hit the weights when we’re at the gym and only like to focus on cardio. Lifting weights consistently can help you gain strength (duh) and a stronger endurance. Three reps of any lifting workout is a good start. It also increases your metabolism.

The One ‘Healthy’ Food Diet

The grapefruit diet was the first of its kind when it was launched in the 1930s. It didn’t gain popularity until the ’70s, which led to a long list of fad diets including the color diet, the baby food diet, and the dangerous liquid diet that only requires you to drink alcohol. These diets are fads for a reason and don’t help to keep the pounds off. You can also destroy your body in the process of doing them. Remember that your body is a temple, and on your journey to a healthy lifestyle, a quick shortcut like downing baby food won’t help you get there.

The McDonalds-Starbucks-Subway Diets

These diets are no different than a one-food plan, but they have been proven to work…for some. Just because a fad diet works for one person, doesn’t mean it will work for another. Besides, why would you want to eat McDonalds every day?  And why would you want to spend that money every day? Not to mention that fast food has been proven to affect your behavior and overall health if you eat too much of it.

Sleeping Off Weight

The sleep diet, also known as the Overnight Diet, was allegedly a favorite of the late Elvis Presley and has worked for some women. The Overnight Diet consists of you eating solid foods for a week and adding a smoothie in. According to Dr. Caroline Apovian, the author of the book, The Overnight Diet, the regimen along with sleep is promised to help you lose two pounds a week.

Before you grab the pillow, keep this in mind: In an interview with ABC News in April 2013, Dr. Apovian’s diet was refuted by Keith Ayoob of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. “It won’t be fat,” he explained. “In order to lose two pounds of body fat overnight you’d have to burn up about six or seven thousand calories and there’s just no way to do that by sleeping.”

Long story short, you’re losing water weight and we’ve already learned it’s faster to gain that back than it is to lose it.

Ear Stapling

Ear Stapling is the lazy man’s acupuncture that promises weight loss. The method involves the small needles hitting pressure points in the ears that will reduce appetite. Sounds random and painful right? It has worked for some, but I wouldn’t recommend it.

The Smoking Diet

Once upon of time, advertisers would use cigarettes to convince women that their products would help them lose weight. The ‘Reach For A Lucky’ campaign in 1925 promised women that reaching for a cigarette instead of a sweet treat would help shrink waistlines. Not only was this demoralizing and disrespectful to women, it doesn’t even work so don’t even think about it.

So with that, what are some methods you’ve tried that failed miserably? Share below.

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