Many people in modern society have a fervent desire to want results now. This penchant for immediate satisfaction also extends to weight loss programs. People often want to drop pounds now, no matter what the long term consequences. When people use one of many extreme weight loss methods, they can lose weight quickly; however, often they gain it back just as fast.
Extreme weight loss methods generally have one thing in common, an ultra low calorie intake, usually less than 1000 calories per day. At the most extreme some people will go without food at all for a period of time in an extreme fast to lose weight. The Master Cleanse formula is one example of an extreme diet which has a person eat nothing while only drinking a form of lemon juice over a couple of weeks. The HCG diet is another one that typically uses ultra-low calorie intakes in an initial phase to lose weight very fast. In this diet HCG is usually injected under the theory that it can liberate certain hard to vacate fat cells.
All of these extreme weight loss methods work, for a time. If you do run at a significant calorie deficit for a significant amount of time, you cannot help but lose weight. However, this is not healthy at all. Your body does not just require energy to function. It requires a steady supply of protein, fats, vitamins, and minerals to function properly. If you do not receive these nutrients, your health can suffer significantly.
When your body encounters such a deficiency in nutrients, it is left no choice but to start cannibalizing tissue from other parts of your body to supply nutrients for more important organs. Lean body mass can thus begin to fall dramatically. At the same time, your metabolism begins to plummet as your body believes it is in danger of starvation. The person on the diet will likely begin to feel tired and drained of energy. At the same time, insomnia can be a big problem when not getting enough calories, as the brain has a hard time getting nourishment as it cannot metabolize fat stores.
After a person comes off this diet, this depressed metabolic state creates real problems for the dieter. As the person begins to eat normally again, fat pounds will pile up at significant rate. The more extreme the diet, the greater the depression in metabolism, and the bigger the rebound in fat loss.
Because lean body mass has been digested in the process, this is more than just a short term problem. Even after one's level of eating has returned to normal, the person will have less lean body mass to effectively burn calories. That means long term, it will be even harder to lose weight in the future.
Extreme weight loss diets might seem like a good idea when one wants to lose weight in a hurry, but they can be a disaster for your health. These diets usually will result in a person gaining more weight over time than if they decided to do no diet at all due to the significant rebound effect.