We’ve all heard of some pretty crazy diets. It feels like people are willing to do just about anything in the name of dropping the pounds as quickly as they possibly can. Still, there are some diets that are so over the top that it’s unbelievable that anyone at all would ever give them a second thought, let alone an actual try.
Here are some of the worst ones that somehow became a thing in 2017 and that we should all do our best to forget about for 2018.
• The Tapeworm Diet – Believe it or not, this fad got its start back in Victorian times when tiny waists were all the rage and both men and women would do anything to attain them. Somehow, this madness of actually infecting oneself with dangerous and potentially deadly parasites came back into popularity and people started deliberately making themselves extremely ill in the hopes that the right anti-parasitic medications and extremely unpleasant symptoms will clear up the worms riddling the digestive tract. Even worse? There’s no proof that this even leads to weight loss!
• The Cotton Ball Diet – This one got started in 2013 but really came into its own in 2017. People would soak cotton balls in their favorite drink and eat five of them or more. The idea is to fill the stomach with something it can’t digest, to produce a full feeling without any calories. Unfortunately, the majority of cotton balls are made from polyester. The body can’t break down this synthetic fiber and led to intestinal blockages that were painful and placed their lives at risk. People following this terrible diet suffered from nutrient deficiencies at best and had to undergo procedures to clear blockages after experiencing intense pain, at worst.
• The Taco Cleanse – Doctors have been trying to discourage cleanses and detoxes for years, but this one really takes the cake. The idea is to eat tacos for each of the three main meals every day for a month. The nutrition and results in this type of diet are dubious at best. It’s far more likely that someone following this strategy would struggle with weight management than to actually see any benefits.
• The Baby Food Diet – This one was tried by Lady GaGa, Jennifer Anniston and Reese Witherspoon (reportedly – though can you blame them for denying it?). This substitutes normal food for pureed fruits and veggies for breakfast and lunch – 14 jars total. Then, eat a normal dinner, aiming to keep calories under control. The idea is that even after eating that many jars of baby food, the calorie content would still be lower than what would usually be eaten.