- What is a mono diet
- Why is she dangerous
- Popular mono diets
- Doctor's comment
The article was reviewed and commented by Stanislav Khan, endocrinologist, nutritionist at the Medswiss Zamoskvorechye clinic, blog author @doctor__khan
What is a mono diet
A monotrophic diet is a simple diet based on one or more permitted foods in the same group.
Buckwheat, protein, kefir, apple, egg and other types of diet are popular. Their supporters believe that with the help of a mono-diet, you can quickly lose excess weight without careful monitoring and planning, as is the case with a varied, balanced diet.
One of the popularizers of the mono diet is the magician Penn Gillett, who wrote the book How I Made Over 100 Pounds Disappear and Other Fairy Tales. He told how he ate only potatoes for half a month, and argued that in this way, with a smooth exit from the diet, you can quickly get rid of excess weight.
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It would seem that it could be easier - you buy the same foods and eat them daily, sometimes you change them depending on the schedule and characteristics of the diet. The weight melts and the cooking time is saved. But doctors consider this type of diet unhealthy and leads to severe nutritional deficiencies in the long term. In addition, the lost pounds in most cases are returned in surplus.
Food for thought: how the most popular diets work
Why are mono diets dangerous?
On the one hand, a strict dietary restriction will help to quickly reach the target figure on the scales. On the other hand, even with a smooth return to the usual diet, rollbacks and weight gain are inevitable. Mono diets are associated with potential risks and side effects. Here's why.
Form unhealthy eating habits
In a couple of weeks, you can restructure your diet so that it becomes a habit. By encouraging the use of a particular type of food, mono-diets lead to limited choices later. It is impossible to eat only protein all your life, so diets are limited to a period of one week to a month. However, after that it will be more difficult to add vegetables, fruits and cereals to the diet, since strict restrictions are difficult to bear psychologically. Doctors have shown that following mono-diets often leads to eating disorders and diseases such as type 2 diabetes and obesity . In addition, these diets are not supplemented with recommendations for physical activity. With a limited diet, you may simply not have the strength for sports. It is the combination of a balanced diet and regular exercise that is the ideal strategy for weight loss, fitness and health.
Mono diets increase the risk of nutritional deficiencies
Even hearty and healthy foods like meat and eggs lack certain vitamins and minerals. Typically, a mono diet focuses on one group of macronutrients - protein, fat or carbohydrate foods. And for the body to work properly, it needs microelements that come with a variety of vegetables and fruits. It is especially dangerous to follow a mono-diet for a long time (longer than one to two weeks); then the lack of the necessary substances can cause irreversible health consequences.
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Eating only vegetables and fruits is not an option either. For example, if you only eat bananas, it will be difficult to get enough protein, healthy fats, iron, calcium, vitamins A and B12 . Likewise, meat, fish, and poultry are deficient in important nutrients such as vitamin C, fiber, and antioxidants. Their deficiency can lead to impaired immunity, anemia, indigestion, loss of bone mass, and some chronic diseases , .
Worse well-being and mood
Since it is almost impossible to get enough calories and meet the need for micronutrients with one or more foods, mono-diet is often accompanied by fatigue, weakness, feeling unwell and constant hunger , . A strict restriction makes it difficult to choose dishes at a party or a restaurant, at a holiday. This inevitably leads to unnecessary stress and bad mood.
Mono diets negatively affect muscles and bones
Lack of nutrition slows down metabolism, increasing the risk of muscle loss, and retains weight in the long term , . Studies have confirmed that severe caloric restriction leads to a decrease in bone mass and a decrease in fertility in women .