Is there a place in your life for a liquid diet for weight loss?
At some point in life, most people want to use a dietary plan to either lose weight, gain weight or for health benefits. However, selecting the ideal diet plan can be hard.
Health and dieting are trending. Thus, there is a wide variety of dieting options available. Some are helpful while others are rather detrimental. It is important when looking for a weight or health change to choose the plan that is best for your own unique weight goals.
When searching for an appropriate dietary plan – is a liquid diet an option?
What is a Liquid Diet?
A liquid diet is an alternative to eating solid meals. It does not have to make up 100% of a person’s calories. So, in some cases, dieters do not have to drink liquids all the time.
A liquid diet is basically what the name implies; it is the process of drinking calories instead of eating them. The makers of products like Plexus Slim and Superbeets aim to address drinking healthy while offering up some good vitamins.
An individual on a liquid diet would drink calories instead of eating a solid meal.
This is used as a way to lose weight and a method to improve health when suggested by a doctor. Although liquid diets have been proven to help with weight loss, there are health issues and risks to consider.
If an individual is planning on following a liquid diet, it is suggested that he or she contact a physician to discuss the plan to and inquire about any reasons for concern or suggestions. It may also be helpful to see a dietician to ensure you are receiving necessary vitamins.
What to be Mindful of When Using a Liquid Diet for Weight Loss
Dieters can choose a liquid diet for weight loss without being medically monitored. But, there are some issues to think about.
- Consider what is in your liquid diet – whether you are making your liquid drink at home or purchasing it from the store, it is important to be mindful of what is in the drink.
- Read the label when you buy the dietary product from the store – your body needs the right amount and kind of vitamins and minerals to survive. So, make sure you are getting what’s necessary from your diet; this is especially the case with protein and fiber.
If you are not getting enough protein, your initial weight loss could be mostly muscle. Most people want to lose fat, not muscle.
Also, if you do not have enough fiber, you may have issues with constipation.
When attempting to lose weight in this way, dieters may want to track calories just to make sure the body is getting enough energy for general health.
It’s important to note that although you will see pleasing short-term weight loss results, you will likely gain the weight back in the long term.
The Best Ways to Get Results From a Liquid Diet
Using a liquid diet weight loss routine can spark results; this is especially the case when individuals cut calories to 400-800 a day.
However, when individuals are utilizing a low-calorie liquid diet often the results do not last once solid foods come back into the picture.
To see long-term results an individual may want to include one to two solid meals a day. Another alternative would be to add a couple solid snacks just to beef up protein and healthy fats.
This can be helpful because it prepares an individual with healthy eating habits. At the end, the maintenance of healthy eating will support long-term weight loss results.
Long-term weight loss is about health habits and dedication; a balanced liquid diet may be helpful in preparing for a mindset of healthy habits and dedication, in some cases.
Using a Liquid Diet to Lose Weight: Weight Loss Surgery
At times physicians will suggest a liquid diet before gastric bypass or gastric sleeve procedures. In this instance, a liquid diet would be medically monitored.
Typically physicians suggest it to individuals who are obese or super obese. When used before weight loss surgery it can help an individual reach a safer weight to lessen the risk of surgical complications.
Liquid diets used to lose weight before surgery are closely supervised. It is important that dieters still receive necessary nutrients as the body needs them to recover and heal.
What is the Best Liquid Diet?
Society often fixates on what is BEST. However, what is best is not always generic. What may be the best liquid diet for one individual may not be best for another.
For example, an individual attempting to lose weight before a weight loss surgery may find that an all liquid diet is most beneficial; whereas, someone else may find using a liquid drink in addition to solid meals to be best.
It is important to find a liquid diet that is best for you. It is likely that a balanced plan is good for almost anyone in moderation. This is one in which an individual is getting all the required vitamins and nutrients either in a liquid drink, solid meals or with supplements.
When looking for BEST results, the ideal liquid meal for weight loss is one paired with exercise.
Popular Options for Individuals Following an All Liquid Diet
Individuals preparing for an all liquid diet may want to be mindful of popular meal replacement products. Slim-Fast is currently a one of the oldest on the market. Herbalife, Ensure and Shakeology are also popular options.
Common Concerns With a Full Liquid Diet
Although there can be benefits, there can also be concerns. Some of the more common include:
- Not getting adequate amounts of nutrients and vitamins
- Regaining weight after a low-calorie liquid diet
- Lower metabolism from drinking too few calories
- Weight gain as a result of extreme hunger
- Fatigue from taking in too few calories
- Diarrhea or constipation
This list is not all-inclusive. Each dieter is different and may have to deal with side effects or health issues, depending on the exact liquid diet plan being followed.
How About a Clear Liquid Diet?
A clear liquid diet often consists of water, broth and gelatin. However, coffee and tea are allowed most of the time.
This type of diet is often used for digestive reasons or in preparation for a medical procedure. An individual can lose weight during this process.
It is suggested that vitamins be a part of it. Ultimately, a clear liquid diet should only be done under the care of a doctor.
Liquid Diet Ideas
People often get creative to help make the drinks more appetizing. Some options we’ve read about include:
- Flavored broth
- Milk with sugar-free syrup
- Gelatin (Jello)
- Low-calorie fruit juice
- Frozen yogurt
Basically, the idea is to stay hydrated and get your calories via liquids, but keeping things fresh and new in the process.
The Bottom Line on Liquid Diets
There’s a fine line between healthy liquid diets and diets that border on unsafe. Before tackling a liquid diet, it’s best to talk with your doctor to work out how many calories you need and what vitamins you should supplement in the case you can’t get what you need in liquid form.
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Medical Reviewer Note: “There are reasons to transiently employ a liquid diet, as you stated, but chronically adopting this method is unlikely to result in permanent weight loss. I like the idea of liquids in the form of meal replacement or supplement (smoothies and shakes), but not as the sole source of meals.”
Summer Banks, Director of Content at Dietspotlight, has researched over 5000 weight-loss programs, pills, shakes and diet plans. Previously, she managed 15 supplement brands, worked with doctors specializing in weight loss and completed coursework in nutrition at Stanford University. full bio.