Generally considered to be a fad diet, the cabbage soup diet is designed to help lose 10 pounds or 4.5 kg of weight in seven days. Let's take a look at what exactly is the cabbage soup diet, its benefits, its disadvantages and whether it actually works or not.
What is the Cabbage Soup Diet Exactly?
Not much is known about the origin of the cabbage soup diet. Proponents of the diet claim that it helps you lose weight because it is a low-calorie diet. It is definitely a low calorie diet since the dieters are required to cut their calorie intake by more than 50 percent. So, you basically end up consuming around 800 to 1000 calories a day.
The diet is designed for people who want to lose weight quickly. No long-term commitment is required. You go on the cabbage soup diet for about a week, lose around 10 pounds, look slimmer and go back to your usual daily diet after that.
Here are a few things about the diet you will be consuming during the course of the week:
As is quite clear from the name, cabbage soup will be your staple diet for a week. However, you are allowed to eat a few other foods as well during the week.
You are allowed to eat two bowls of cabbage soup every day. It should be free of fat. Low-calorie vegetables such as onions and tomatoes can be included. Fruits, except bananas, can be eaten during this seven day weight loss program.
Skimmed milk and beef are also allowed on certain days.
Spices and tomato juice can used to add flavor to the bland diet.
You will be encouraged to drink plenty of water.
You don't need to exercise or commit to the diet for a lifetime. The diet is low in proteins, vitamins, minerals, and complex carbohydrates. It should ideally be followed by at least two weeks of a normal and balanced diet. This ensures that your body gets all the required nutrition that has been missing in the first week.
Benefits of the Cabbage Soup Diet
The cabbage soup diet is ideal for people who want to lose weight quickly within a week. It is not advisable to stay on the diet for more than a week as it may cause various health problems due to lack of nutrition and low calorie intake.
It does help you lose around 10 pounds in a week. So, if you want to get rid of your extra weight for your wedding or reunion next week, it may be the diet you are looking for.
Disadvantages of the Cabbage Soup Diet
The diet seems to have more disadvantages than benefits. Here are a few reasons why the diet is criticized by diet experts:
The diet is criticized mostly because it is low in calories as well as in nutrition. According to experts, any diet that requires you to cut down your calories to less than1200 is not good for your long-term health.
The diet is also low in nutrients and should not be followed for more than a week.
You will also gain the lost weight as soon as you go back to your normal diet the following week. So, it is only meant for short-term weight loss.
The diet is also quite bland and boring. Not many people can cope with eating cabbage soup for a whole week. While the diet does allow you to include certain other foods into your diet, it is still quite tasteless.
Cabbage also causes flatulence. So, may want to be particular about the variety of cabbage you choose for your soup. Some of the Chinese variants may be easier to digest and cause less flatulence than the other varieties.
Critics also claim that the diet actually does not make you lose fat. In fact, it is just loss of water and nothing else.
Should You Even Try It?
As mentioned above, the cabbage soup diet is a fad diet, which is dangerously low on calories and nutrients. It probably only causes you to lose water rather than fat. The weight also comes back as soon as you go back to your normal diet the next week.
Despite the criticism, many people do actually try the diet. It is one of the most popular diets used for quick weight loss. People wanting to lose weight quickly for a special occasion have tried it and have been able to fit in the dress they wanted.
However, besides flatulence, people on this diet report feeling dizzy, low on energy, and sleepy. So, you will need to be extra careful if you are on medication or have any chronic diseases. Make sure to consult your physician if you are planning to go on such a diet.
If you are planning to try this diet for some quick weight loss, make sure to follow it up with a good and balanced diet in the following weeks. This will ensure that there are no long-term negative impacts on your body because of following the cabbage soup diet.