A 10-day crash diet may appeal to you if you have experienced frustration with slow weight loss, or think you need to lose weight quickly. Crash dieting, even if just for a few days, can lead to yo-yo dieting, where you lose and regain the same few pounds over and over. A crash diet is not a healthy way to lose weight, and you should consult your physician before starting any weight-loss program.
Reasons and Definition
The theory and philosophy behind going on a crash diet for 10 days involves jump-starting your weight loss, losing pounds quickly or losing weight in preparation for a big event. While your reasons for crash dieting for 10 days may be valid, any time you subject your body to an extremely restricted caloric intake, fail to eat foods from all the food groups or take unhealthy diet supplements, you run the risk of doing permanent harm to your body, according to the Weight-Control Information Network.
A 10-day crash diet, similar to a three-day crash diet, recommends severely restricting your calories through eating small amounts of certain foods, according to author Ruth A. Roth, author of "Nutrition and Diet Therapy." Instead of eating a sensible 1,200 to 1,500 calories a day to affect weight loss, a crash diet often recommends reducing your calories to between 600 and 900 per day. A 10-day diet may focus on eating mainly one food group such as fruits or vegetables, or may give you strict menus that you have to follow at each meal for 10 days.
A 10-day crash diet can be even more dangerous than a crash diet of shorter duration, because of the length of time you deprive your body of adequate caloric intake and nutrients. Very low caloric intakes can cause you to feel lethargic because of lack of calories from food and healthy beverages. Additionally, when you combine a low calorie diet with foods that limit your nutrient intake, you risk becoming deficient in certain vitamins and minerals. For example, if you only consume fruits, you will miss out on adequate protein, calcium and other vital nutrients.
Instead of crash dieting for 10 days in the hopes of losing weight temporarily, take 10 days and eliminate unhealthy snacks you often eat, cut back on saturated fats, increase the number of fruits and vegetable servings you consume and eliminate refined sugars. These relatively simple changes will often result in weight loss and increased energy from eating a more balanced diet. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicates that consistent lifestyle changes such as healthy eating and exercise are the types of sustainable changes that will make a long-term difference in your weight.
- "Fitness"; Why Yo-Yo Dieting is Bad for You; Kenrya Rankin
- Weight-Control Information Network; Weight-Loss and Nutrition Myths; March 2009
- American Academy of Family Physicians; Fad Diets: Weighing Short-Term Gains Against Long-Term Harms?; Hannah DeClerk; May 2010
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Losing Weight