Does water diet work? 5 harmful effects of following this weight loss fad

Many people are trying water fasting due to various reasons, such as religious or spiritual acts, preparation for a medical procedure or for their goals to lose weight. This basically requires one to restrict intake of anything except for water

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Water diet can help reduce the risk of some chronic diseases and help the body break down and recycle old parts of cells. However, this approach is not suitable for everyone.

The presence of water in the body gives a number of health benefits, but restricting consumption of any food could also lead to health problems.

Losing the wrong weight

Water diet is known to cause faster weight loss as it significantly cuts the entry of calories in the body. Research showed that a person can lose up to 2 pounds per day, but this weight actually comes from the water, carbs and muscle mass.

“You lose more muscle compared to people losing weight from a recommended calorie reduction of 500-800 calories per day from their normal intake,” Julie Upton, a registered dietitian and co-founder of Appetite for Health, told TODAY.


Yes, a person may still experience dehydration while doing the water diet. The reason is that 20 to 30 per cent of the water in the body comes from food. Water fasting maintains the same amount of water that a person drinks even when not eating food, according to Healthline.

Orthostatic hypotension

Orthostatic hypotension is one of the most common conditions in people are doing the water diet. It causes a significant drop in the blood pressure. Orthostatic hypotension commonly occurs when a person suddenly stands up, leading to dizziness and potentially fainting.

Worsens medical conditions

Despite having medical benefits, water diet can also increase the effects of some conditions, such as gout, diabetes, chronic kidney disease and heartburn. Water fasting can damage the kidneys in people with chronic kidney disease, increase uric acid production and boost stomach acid due to lack of food to digest.

Eating disorders

Previous studies showed that some people seeking to lose weight may actually experience the opposite effect of water diet. Fasting has been found to cause eating disorders, such as bulimia, especially in teenagers.

“Skip this fad and lose weight and tone up the way that works: Cut out lazy calories (added sugars, saturated fats) and exercise,” Upton said. “You will feel a lot better and it’s more likely to last.”

Source: Medical Daily  

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