Rapid Weight Loss

Maybe you heard phrases like “Lose 10 pounds in 10 days”, “you can eat as much as you want and still lose weight”, and others. If someone believes this, to lose weight seems to be easy. Moreover, in the United States, people spend on weight loss products approximately $33 billion every year. However, some questions appear including:

  • Do they really lead to quick weight loss?
  • How safe are they?
  • Are there risks of losing weight rapidly?

Rapid Weight Loss

There are different marketers that promise to lose weight fast and it becomes difficult to sort them. When a person loses more than 2 pounds of weight weekly for several weeks it is considered a rapid weight loss schedule. However, most of them are divided into the following categories. For example:

  • Starvation Diets – This is a diet that involves fasting and severely limiting the foods you can eat. However, there are different variations of this diet type.
  • Diet Pills and Supplements – Many supplements promise to increase the speed of weight loss. However, those who produce weight loss supplements say that they work by blocking nutrient absorption, improving metabolism, or burning fat.
  • Very Low-calorie Diets (VLCDs) – This is a very low-calorie diet that should be used under medical supervision only. Rapid weight loss starts from studies of people who follow these diets. The duration of these diets is up to 12 weeks.
  • Creams and Other Devices – These weight loss options promise to replace diet or exercise. Some of them say that they can help in losing weight when are used in specific parts of the body. However, when we see an advertiser that says “Lose weight with a cream or patch”, we should be cautious because the Federal Trade Commission confirms that such claims are false and you can just waste your money and time.

Do Rapid Weight Loss Programs Work?

However, there are some medicines that can provide fast weight loss. Never take them without a doctor’s recommendation because it may lead to certain unpleasant results (such as adverse reactions). Some people can choose over-the-counter (OTC) weight loss products. Moreover, the U.S. FDA (Food and Drug Administration) regulates dietary supplements. In any case, they treat them more like foods than medicines. On the other hand, they do not regulate the claims made by OTC weight loss products compared to manufacturers of medications. It means that dietary supplements can be marketed without FDA approval.

Generally, any fast weight loss program that really burns fat includes a significant reduction of calories along with regular exercise but not pills or specific food types.

What are the Risks Associated with Fast Weight Loss?

  • Gallstones – Between 15%-25% of people who lose weight fast experience this complication.
  • Dehydration – Drink plenty of water while following a rapid weight loss program.
  • Malnutrition – It usually occurs due to not eating enough proteins for long periods.
  • Electrolyte Imbalances – In some cases, this complication can be life-threatening. Consult with your doctor about how to maintain electrolyte balance.

Check below also some adverse reactions that can happen in people who lose weight rapidly:

  • Fatigue (extreme tiredness)
  • Irritability
  • Headaches
  • Constipation
  • Dizziness
  • Hair loss
  • Muscle loss
  • Irregular menstrual cycle

Is it a Good Idea to Lose Weight Fast?

It is advised to visit a doctor before starting a rapid weight loss program. Otherwise, it may not work for you or worsen some existing health problems. Mostly, for obese people, VLCD is the best choice. This diet type also can help to improve diabetes, high cholesterol, hypertension (high blood pressure), and other diseases. A person is considered obese if the mass index is higher than 30.

Additionally, getting a healthy body weight can decrease the risk of some cancer types (such as postmenopausal breast cancer, ovarian, colon, and pancreatic cancer).

Super limiting diets are hard to stick to and can lead to certain health problems. It happens because a significant loss of muscle mass and fat can slow down the metabolism. Check below some side effects of rapid weight loss programs:

  • Extreme tiredness (fatigue)
  • Constipation
  • Reduced bone density
  • Weakened immune system
  • Hair loss and others

One of the most effective rapid weight loss programs is VLCDs. Although they should be used under medical supervision they are quite expensive but those who follow this diet can lose between 15%-25% of body weight within 12 weeks. However, not anyone can complete this program and this can lead to the return of the weight. Thus, most healthcare providers suggest taking a sustainable approach to weight loss and choosing a program similar to regular diets.

Fast Weight Loss after Pregnancy

The female’s body burns an increased amount of calories during breastfeeding. Therefore, if you are losing weight too fast, it may cause reduced milk production. That’s why it is advised to wait until your baby is at least 2 months old to reduce significant calories.

In addition, roughly 3% of females after birth develop postpartum thyroiditis (a disease that causes inflammation of the thyroid gland). As a result, it may lead to hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid gland) along with weight loss. Physicians usually prescribe beta-blockers, Prednisone, and other medicines to treat this condition.

Estrogen Levels and Rapid Weight Loss

An increase in Estrogen levels can occur due to an increased body fat. Therefore, it could elevate your risk of breast cancer. Maintaining a healthy weight can reduce the risk of breast cancer and other health conditions.

Additionally, some people have an increased body weight due to antidepressants. It is one of the most common reasons why people give up on mental health medicines. However, doctors often prescribe Topiramate (a medication associated with significant weight loss) along with mental health drugs.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it possible to lose 10 pounds fast?

Yes, check below some tips that can help to lose 10 pounds quickly. However, before trying it, consult with your doctor about the risks and benefits. For example:

  • Resistance training
  • Decrease bloating
  • Intermittent fasting
  • High-intensity cardio
  • Add protein
  • More move
  • Avoid junk foods
  • You can also make a calorie deficit

How to speed up the weight loss?

There are some ways to improve weight loss. For example:

  • Consume protein, fat, and vegetables
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Elevate the fiber amount in the diet
  • Regular exercise

Talk with your doctor for more details.

Are there some foods that burn belly fat?

  • Soluble fiber (including vegetables, legumes, and fruits)
  • Protein foods (such as eggs, fish, dairy, meat, and others)
  • Fatty fish (including tuna and salmon)
  • Probiotics (such as yogurt)
  • Green tea

In case you have additional questions, ask your healthcare provider.

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