The thing about the media is that the industry’s so-called experts always try to set a standard of what they perceive to be the ideal physical appearance. Girls have to be of a certain height with slim, yet toned arms, a flat belly, and perhaps that enviable thigh gap that many are aspiring to attain. They must be a certain weight that’s proportional to their height. If they go even a little above it, they’re already considered overweight. From this obsession with weight loss sprouted the beginnings of diets.
Many diets have certainly helped people in losing weight the healthy way. A lot of these eating regimens are practical and reasonable: cut back on sweets and carbs, load up on proteins and calcium, drink loads of water, eat lots of fruits and vegetables, and above all, exercise. It requires a lot of hard work and effort, which many don’t have the time or the tenacity to follow through on. Hence, the birth of fad diets, many of them outrageous and bordering on insane.
14 Le Petit Secret
With a diet name like Le Petit Secret, it’s clear to all and sundry that it originated from France. And it really is a best-kept secret! This diet has nothing to do with what kind of food the dieter eats or doesn’t eat. It’s about what’s hidden underneath her clothes. According to an article on Shape, French women tie a ribbon around their bare waist before dressing up and taking their meals. When the ribbon starts to feel tight, it’s a sign that they’re eating beyond their limits. So they immediately stop, thus preventing any more calorie intake.
13 Sun Eating
We all know that early morning sun is the healthiest way of getting that much needed Vitamin D in your system. But China’s Sun Eating Diet takes the sun’s health benefits to a whole different level. The diet plan dictates to skip one meal to stare directly at the sun for an exact 44 minutes a day. The theory behind this is that the Chinese believe that doing so curbs your appetite, helps you sleep better, and improves your vision.
12 Werewolf Diet
Fear not, the Werewolf Diet doesn’t entail literally eating werewolves. Originating from Latin America and also known as the Moon Diet, it goes by the phases of the moon in dictating what to eat. In other words, it’s based on the principle of gravity, since our bodies are made out of water and the moon has been known to affect water. The diet starts with a fast for 24 hours during the full moon, then limiting food to whole, seasonal fruits and vegetables during a particular moon phase.
11 OCD Diet
The only known definition of the abbreviation OCD is Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. But in the world of wacky diets, it actually stands for Obsessive Corbuzier Diet or OCD Diet, which originated in Indonesia. Those who follow the diet have to adhere to fasting, limiting eating to every four, six, or eight hours. The fun part of this diet is you can eat calorie-packed food like Twinkies or Oreos during your chosen time frame. But the downside is that you’ll be going without food for 20, 18, or 16 hours a day.
10 Fat Black Diet
Discriminating as the name of this diet may seem, it has absolutely nothing to do with insulting anyone. Silicon Valley entrepreneur Dave Asprey has discovered that “bulletproof coffee” can actually be an effective diet beverage, claiming he lost 36 kilos with this particular coffee concoction that he invented. What is bulletproof coffee exactly? According to The Guardian, it’s a 460-calorie blend of coffee, butter, and oil. It apparently helps lose weight, boost energy, and promote brain power.
9 Keto Diet
The Atkins Diet was once all the rage, with celebrities and the regular man on the street sticking to it religiously for weight loss. A variation of it that came into prominence this year is the Keto Diet. Invented in the 1920s to prevent seizures with epileptics, the Keto Diet is low-carb, but high in fat, banning wheat and sweets, but having the dieter indulge in meats, nuts, and dairy. Experts swear by it because the amount of protein you consume will help you feel fuller for longer periods of time.
8 Ear Stapling
Many individuals who are overweight or dealing with health issues have been known to undergo an operation called gastric banding to help cut out the fat and lose weight. But has anyone ever heard of ear stapling? The Guardian states that it’s a less invasive form of dieting that involves inserting a staple into the ears in order to target a certain pressure point that supposedly suppresses hunger pangs. People have to pay heed though because there have been cases of ear infections from those who have tried it out.
7 Diet Bet
They say you find everything on the Internet nowadays and the Diet Bet is no exception. Dietbet is a gambling internet game, challenging the dieter to best other players and emerge the winner. The Dietbet website claims it has 150,000 participants who were successfully able to lose weight and won a collective total of $6 million. Many satisfied customers happily reported that they lost an average of 5 kilos and won $58 each, so it’s certainly a good way to diet for gamers.
6 Cotton Ball Diet
Cotton candy is definitely one of the more popular sweets for both kids and grown-ups, not just because of its sweetness and color, but for the illusion and novelty of eating something cotton-like. But how about a diet wherein you eat actual cotton balls? There’s such a thing as the Cotton Balls diet, which some models and dancers have attested to. The diet requires you to eat cotton balls to help you feel full and prevent you from overeating. Do it at your own risk, though, because cotton not being edible can wreak chaos in your digestive system.
5 Tapeworm Diet
Using tapeworms to help in weight loss is so far-fetched and many doctors have advised against it. Yet, such a thing exists and people have actually tried it out. The Tapeworm diet started in the 1920s, when manufacturers developed pills containing tapeworms. These little pests were meant to spread out around your stomach, attach themselves to the stomach lining, and chomp away at the food you consumed. The problem is, these tapeworms also eat the nutrition that your body needs to stay healthy.
Words that end in “ism” are usually ideologies embraced by a certain group of people to make their lives and worlds better. In this case, dieticians invented Breatharianism. Followers of this ideology believe that people can survive on natural and non-material elements, such as spirituality, meditation, and sunlight without having to eat actual food. In other words, it’s a form of prolonged fasting, which if done too frequently, can actually lead to either starvation or perhaps even binge eating.
3 The Freegan Diet
For the environment-conscious dieter wannabes, there’s apparently a diet that’s suited for your passions and it’s called the Freegan Diet. Freegans, as the diet’s practicioners are called, try to use second-hand and recyclable items at all times. Their devotion to the environment spills over to their food intake, preferring to adhere to a strictly vegan diet and occasionally scavenge through dumpsters to look for food to consume. So followers of this diet have to have the stomach for this method.
Another ideology in dieting is called Fletcherism, named after its founder Horace Fletcher. He coined the term “Fletcherize,” which basically means chewing one’s food around 100 times per minute and only swallowing the food’s juices and liquids. The solid part of the food, on the other hand, is spit out so as to avoid adding unwanted fats and calories. How “Fletcherists” could survive on juices of the food alone is a mystery, but it’s a good thing that eating and chewing slowly, then swallowing everything is also an effective way to digest food without having to spit it out.
1 The Last-Chance Diet
The title of this diet sounds quite ominous and the fact that it involves a certain liquid that’s called Elixir kind of gives us the impression of being in some sci-fi fantasy movie. The Last-Chance Diet was invented by one Dr. Robert Linn and it’s touted as one of the weirdest diets ever concocted. It entailed consuming nothing but Elixir, a liquid protein made up of pre-digested animal parts blended with sweeteners to make the taste bearable. The result? An instant halt to Elixir production after several dieters died.