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Losing weight is not a walk in the park. Besides regular exercise and enough night sleep, a good meal plan is needed. Fad diets have been shown to be highly effective at promoting weight loss.

Sticking to a fad for a certain duration can help you lose weight significantly besides guaranteeing other health benefits. However, they don’t have scientific background to back their use. Worse enough, some are even not balanced nutritionally and prove to be ineffective after a while. That said, there are some proven fad diets that can effectively help you lose weight. They can be sustained for long, are healthy, and well balanced nutritionally. This article discusses some of the best fad diets you can try.

Atkins Diet

The Atkins diet is one of the most popular weight loss diet in the world. It focuses on the intake of low carbs while increasing protein intake. This effective fad diet was created by Robert Atkins, a cardiologist, back in the 1970s. The Atkins diet promises rapid weight loss without instilling the feelings of hunger. The diet is broken down into four stages for easy following and adherence. The Induction phase consists of two weeks carb restrictions of up to 20 g per day. The follower is allowed to take small amounts of proteins and fat. It is in this phase that your body begins to convert fats into ketones as its main source of energy. After this phase, the followers are asked to start adding back carbs gradually. Here you are expected to add 5 g of carbs daily until you achieve your critical carb levels for weight loss and maintenance. Several controlled studies have shown the Atkins diet to be more effective than other diets for weight loss.

South Beach Diet

This is another weight loss diet that was designed by a cardiologist called Arthur Agatston. It is similar to the Atkins diet in that it does not allow its followers to go hungry. The main aim of this diet was to help patient lose weight while feeling full. The South Beach diet emphasizes on lower intake of fat, lower carb, and high protein. The diet also has phases – 1, 2, and 3. In Stage 1, an individual is expected to take very low amounts of carbs and fats. The restriction is made a bit easy in Stages 2 and 3, where one is allowed to take limited amounts of any preferred unprocessed food. Meanwhile, protein intake is increased. What is the importance of increasing protein intake? Research has consistently shown protein to be effective at burning fats in the gut compared to carbs or fat. Besides, protein increases the levels fullness hormones and reduce or suppresses the production of hunger hormones. In the long run, an individual will feel full for longer hours. Following a diet that is high in proteins and low in fat, may significantly help reduce weight, triglycerides, and fat. The diet also helps maintain muscle mass as compared to standard protein diets. The South Beach diet encourages its followers to increase their intake of vegetable and seed oils while reducing saturated fat. This may increase the risk of several health conditions.

Vegan Diet

One of the dietary plans that have become very popular among people who seek to lose weight is the vegan diet. This form of dieting have been met with a lot of critics as being unbalanced and unsustainable. This may be true as vegan diets completely restricts the intake of all kinds of animal products. Some have praised these diets for being the only ethical way of eating. It is worth mentioning that the vegan diets can be healthy or unhealthy. It all depends on the type of food eaten. It makes no sense that one can effortlessly lose weight by binging on processed foods and beverages only. On the other hand, incorporating whole foods in the vegan diet can drastically lead to weight loss and even reduce the risk factors to various chronic diseases like heart disease.

Ketogenic Diet

Ketogenic or the keto diet, is one of the successful weight loss diets. It perfectly qualifies to be called a “fad” diet. The diet works by sparing sugar – the main source of energy and utilizes ketones instead. This helps lower the levels of ketones. Ketones are byproducts of fatty acids and they can be utilized by your brain and other organs as primary source of energy. When you restrict your intake of carbs and your body lacks it, it will automatically switch to ketones. This will put you in a state clinically called ketosis. Unlike other diets that emphasizes on reduced intake of carbs, the keto diet does not increase carb intake gradually at any point. It rather, promotes the state of ketosis throughout the period of following it. The maximum amount of carb intake allowed in the keto diet is 50 g per day and not less than 30 g. Apart from promoting healthy weight loss, the keto diet may help reduce the inflammatory markers, as well as risk factors in obese individuals.

Paleo Diet

Paleo diet is a word coined from paleolithic diet. This type of diet is considered fad as it restricts many foods, including grains, legumes, and dairy. It has been criticized for forcing its followers to eat foods that were eaten in the pre-historic times; foods that were only eaten by our ancestors. It is important to note that the paleo diet is perfectly balanced and is healthy, only trying to eliminate processed foods. What this diet does is encouraging its followers to diversify eating plant and anima foods. Studies also suggest that the paleo diet may help one lose weight and lead a healthier life. It is just one of the few diets that promote reduction of abdominal fat. It is also associated with reduction in triglycerides, which is a risk factor of heart disease.


There are several fad diets that claim to help people lose weight, yet they are unbalanced nutritionally and unsustainable. The diets discussed above can help you lose weight, maintain muscle mass, and keep you full at all times. You can try them if you are so much inclined.