If You Are Obese, Crash Diets May Kill You

Low crash diets could initially slow your heart performance, which might be fatal to obese people, new research finds.

According to Health news, a new study presented to the European Society of Cardiology found that crash diets, or diets with low calorie content may cause gradual heart decline by increasing the fat levels around the heart. The study which sought to find the effects of low calorie diet on heart function was carried out by a team of researchers from the University of Oxford.

“In conducting the study, the research team assessed 21 obese participants with an average age of 52 and a body mass index (BMI) of 37 kilograms per square meter (kg/m2). The study participants ate a very low-calorie diet of 600 to 800 kilocalories (kcal) every day within eight weeks,” said Health News.

“The researchers used magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to examine the impact of crash diets on the heart function and the distribution of fat in the abdomen, liver, and heart muscle at the beginning of the study and after the first and eighth week,” Health News further elaborates.

According to Jennifer Rayner, lead author of the study, as quoted in Naturalnews.com, the result of this study revealed that heart function could initially get worse as a result of crash diets, before starting to improve. “The metabolic improvements with a very low-calorie diet, such as a reduction in liver fat and reversal of diabetes, would be expected to improve heart function. Instead, heart function got worse in the first week before starting to improve this initial decline in heart functions could prove fatal to people with already existing heart conditions. By the eighth week, the heart fat content and function improved. Likewise, all other measurements, such as body fat and cholesterol, continued to improve.”

As a result of this, the study thought it wise to caution those with existing heart conditions that might have intentions of going on crash diets; as such diets could make their conditions worse. She however did not refute the fact that extreme low calorie diets could have health benefits if rightly done.

Similar research was reported by Health.com in 2010, Cardiologist Isadore Rosenfeld, MD, a professor of clinical medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College, in New York City, was reported to have said that these very low-calorie regimens are hinged on the wrong impression that the body needs help eliminating waste.

"A crash diet once won't hurt your heart," Dr. Rosenfeld says. "But crash dieting repeatedly increases the risk of heart attacks."

Although research has come out supporting the practice of crash diets, a lot of researchers on the harms of crash diets have agreed that rapid weight loss can slow your metabolism, leading to future weight gain, and deprive your body of essential nutrients. They could also weaken your immune system and increase your risk of dehydration, heart palpitations, and cardiac stress.

Crash diets have always been popular among weightwatchers and researchers. Over the years, different research findings have emerged about these diets, findings such as: crash diets can make you obese, crash diets rarely work, they are dangerous to everyone’s health, they might not be so dangerous if you’re over weight, and now they are dangerous to the obese. It would be advised to observe these crash diets with care as new research findings come to light.


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