The Health Advocate

by Hannah Whittenly, The Health Advocate

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Many Americans are overweight or obese, and obesity does carry some health risks. However, not every weight loss diet is a healthy one, and the last thing anyone wants to do is actually follow a diet that worsens their health instead of improving it. Of course, losing weight and staying healthy is possible, but great care must be taken to avoid dieting pitfalls.

Read on to learn three precautions you must take when following any diet to make sure it is truly improving your health and not sabotaging it.

Avoid Taking Diet Pills with Unknown Health Consequences

There are new diet pills on the market every year, and it can be all-too-easy to keep trying one new pill after another thinking that eventually you will find "the one" that will help you lose weight and keep it off for good.

However, throughout history, many diet pills have remained on the market for years before health researchers discovered that they had extremely unhealthy side effects. In the 80s and 90s, many men and women took diet pills that contained Phenylpropanolamine, or PHP. After decades and several deaths, it was discovered that these diet pills greatly increased a person's risk of having a stroke when they were taking them.

In the early 2000s, diet pills containing ephedra were common, and like PHP, this diet pill ingredient was soon found to be very unhealthy and, eventually, diet products containing it were banned in the United States.

For the sake of your health, it is best to avoid taking any diet pill unless your doctor prescribes it. Not only do some of them not work at all, but others have even led to deaths.

Don't Follow Diets That Lack Adequate Nutrition

Doctors always advise patients to eat a diet that contains a wide variety of foods to make sure they get all of the necessary daily nutrients they need. There are always new fad diets out there that involve eating just one or two specific foods every day for weight loss.

Not only are these diets difficult to stick to due to the monotony and boredom of eating the same foods every day, but they often lack many of the essential nutrients that your body needs to stay in good health.

Know When a Strict Diet Has Actually Turned into an Eating Disorder

Many people have misconceptions about eating disorders and think that the only people who have them are extremely underweight. The truth is that people suffering from eating disorders come in all shapes and sizes. Along with anorexia and bulimia, binge eating disorder is also very common today.

How do you know when a diet has turned into an eating disorder? When your quest to lose weight interferes with your ability to live a normal, happy life, then that is a sign that you may have an eating disorder. However, not everyone experiences the same eating disorder symptoms, so if you ever feel like you are developing one, reach out to someone who can help and seek treatment before your disorder and health worsens. It’s best to catch it early so you can get help, but if you catch it late, there are still plenty of options. Facilities like Reasons Eating Disorder Center, and even your personal physician can help you recover and help you prevent future risks of eating disorders.

If you are on a quest to lose weight to improve your health, then be aware of these three precautions to take when following any diet. Weight loss should improve your health and not sabotage it.

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