5 Unusual Diets You Should Never Try, No Matter How Badly You Want to Lose Weight

The strong desire to lose weight and look sexy has opened the door to a wide range of fad diets. Be careful not to try any of these 5!

The strong desire to lose weight and look sexy has opened the door to a wide range of fad diets, which people did follow. Who knows, you might be following one today!

Here’s a look at some of the most outrageous diets, ranging from weird to those bordering on dangerous.

#1: Tapeworm diet: Eat parasites, lose weight

If you think drinking fresh vegetable juice is bad enough, how much more would it be if you swallowed parasites to lose weight? This is the principle behind the tapeworm diet.

Tapeworms are parasites that we can intentionally get from eating undercooked and contaminated meals. These tapeworms live in the intestines and suck out nutrients from the food you eat, causing malnutrition – which was interpreted as skinniness!

In the early part of the century, people sold pills that contained tapeworms. Health experts believe that this is dangerous and even lethal, and is absolutely an unadvisable way to lose weight!

#2: Fletcherizing: Be sure to chew your food!

delicious hamburger woman

Our parents always told us to chew our food well, and they were definitely right! Chewing food well helps aid and eases the digestion process. But what if you only chewed your food and did not swallow it at all?

This is what happened in the early 1900’s, when Horace Fletcher unveiled a new type of diet that promised instant weight loss. He theorized that chewing food 32 times (for each tooth) and then spitting it out afterwards would be enough to allow you to absorb the nutrients that you need.

And of course, people did lose weight because of this diet, mostly due to malnourishment.

#3: Smoking – cigarettes contain zero calories

Here’s another diet fad, which might just be one of the most harmful ones ever. This diet believes that if you light up and smoke a cigarette – instead of eating a meal – you can lose weight.

After all, cigarettes contain zero calories. In fact, back in the 1920s cigarette ads promoted weight loss as one of its major benefits. Then again, if you have to start a bad habit to lose weight, it shouldn’t be good, right?

#4: Some lemon juice and more lemon juice

cutting orange

The Master Cleanse diet gained popularity when Beyonce Knowles used it to lose weight in preparation for her role for Dream Girls. During the diet, she drank a mixture of lemon juice, water, cayenne pepper and maple syrup for ten days, causing her to lose 18 pounds.

Even then, she put the weight on right away when she went back to a normal diet. Even Beyonce doesn’t recommend anyone to follow that diet.

#5: The cotton ball diet

People go to great lengths to fill their stomach up before dinner time, so they end up eating less. Proponents of the cotton ball diet believe that eating cotton balls help reduce hunger by making you feel full already. However, this weight loss plan is completely nonsensical and bordering on dangerous.

Cotton balls have no nutrition, are damaging to the digestive tract and may out you at risk for choking! Chug on water or eat sugar free gelatin before meals instead.

These are just a few of the unusual diets that actually exist. You may have heard of them (or not), and I’m pretty sure you’ve probably heard of others that are similar or worse.

Are there are any weird diets that you have come across?

About the author

Justine R

On an eternal quest for happiness, Justine tries to lead a positive lifestyle by giving back to the universe and following natural approaches to parenting, health, food and beauty. When she's not on the beach, she keeps herself fit (and sane) by running and doing yoga.


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  • I saw the tape worm one as an episode of CSI or something. I didn’t realise people actually did that DELIBERATELY (as opposed to accidentally buying shoddy diet pills online from overseas). So wrong.