15 Dieting Methods That Can Kill You



Everyone wants to lose weight. Even those of us who look thin want to lose weight, it’s just an obsession of our culture. This long-held obsession has gone to some huge extremes over the years with people all over the world dying to lose weight. Here are some examples of how extreme some people have gone. Some of these are definitely not for the faint of heart or weak of stomach. This list will leave you scratching your head, thinking “How can anyone really believe that? How can anyone really do that to themselves?”

All You Have To Do is Breathe

Michelle Pfeiffer actually admitted to this one. This diet involves simply breathing. It is almost a religious practice, the belief that you don’t need food or water to survive. All you need to do is breathe and become one with the universal life force. This does, however, lead to starvation. Believe it or not, your body does need some food and water to survive.

Eating Cotton Balls

This has been promoted on the internet for about as long as the internet has been around. It’s supposedly used by models to keep their figure. It involves eating up to 5 cotton balls a day dipped in some sort of juice (probably to make the things edible). But regardless of what you do to make them edible, they are simply not digestible. They can collect in your intestines creating a deadly block.

That Top One Isn’t a Piercing

This one is actually illegal in several states, mainly in the south. In these states, they have shut down alternative health centers and fined them for promoting this practice. Ear stapling seems to work in the short term for some people, but it can lead to infections and nerve damage. Supposedly, ear stapling is used to suppress your appetite.

Nothing Helps You Lose Weight Like Going to the Hospital

This doctor monitored fad diet involves getting all of your food through a feeding tube. Feeding tubes are not fun. The small tube is put up your nose and directed to your stomach where the food gets deposited. A solution containing protein and fat, but no carbs and very little calories goes into your body through the tube. This diet can lead to constipation, dehydration, and kidney stones among other problems. Setting aside the fact that getting a tube like that shoved up your nose just sounds gross.

Fen-Phen Is A No-Go

This miracle drug hit the market in full force in 1996, although the medication itself is much older. It’s only in the past decade or so that the dangers of the drug has become well-known and the subject of many multi-million dollar court cases. The danger: due to the drug leading the body to have excessive serotonin, your risks of heart disease and high blood pressure go through the roof.

When Good Ideas Go Bad

You have heard it from your parents, “You need to chew your food!” This idea takes it to another level in suggesting that dieters only need to chew their food and then spit it out. They are also encouraged to chew on beverages, thinking that the act of chewing will get all of the nutrition out. This Victorian-era diet, like all starvation diets, can lead to nutritional deficiencies and death.

HCG Will Make Men Grow Breasts

It’s a wonder as to exactly how this diet was created. This diet requires dieters to inject or ingest a hormone produced in the placenta of pregnant women and consume only 500 calories a day. In addition to the usual problems with starvation diets, the hormones fatigue, irritability, swollen breasts in men, and it increases the risk of blood clots. Who thought of the “brilliant” idea of ingesting these hormones in the first place?

That’s So Hollywood!

The Hollywood diet claims to make you look like a star. Maybe you can lose a ton of weight on it in the short-term, but the extremely low calorie diet will put your body into starvation mode. Once you start eating normally again, your body will take on as many calories as it can get, causing you to gain back all of your weight and then some. In the long term, this could easily kill you as your body is not getting all of the calories or nutrition it needs.

Not Just for Horror Films

Yes, some people do wire their jaws shut. The plan is to force the dieter into a liquid diet because they simply physically can’t open their mouths to eat solid food. This leads to massive malnutrition since you just simply can’t get everything your body needs from liquids alone.

Loosening Things Up

Have you ever wondered why they have all those warnings on laxatives about how it’s not a dietary aid? That’s because some people have and still do use it as such. This is dangerous as it leads to dehydration and malnutrition as your body just doesn’t get the chance to absorb everything it needs.

Master Cleanse

Beyonce did it, so it must be good, right? She later claimed it wasn’t the best idea she ever had, though. This diet guides people to drink nothing but lemonade mixed with maple syrup and cayenne pepper for 10 days. Like many of the diets on this list, this will lead your body into starvation mode meaning once you start eating normally again, your body will gain it all back. This diet in particular will also weaken your immune system, dehydrate you, and increase your risk of a heart attack.

Can’t Sleep And Eat At The Same Time

This idea makes sense on the surface. You can’t eat while you’re sleeping, right. But this diet takes the idea to a whole new level. Dieters would use something to make them sleep for days on end. They would wake up thinner because they had starved themselves and they would suffer from muscle atrophy. In addition to the problems of starvation, there is also the numerous problems of putting yourself in a self-induced coma with who knows what drugs.

Oldie But Not So Goodie

This is probably the oldest diet on this list. Starting in the 1900’s, quacks like our Dr. Kwack claimed that the way to lose weight was to actually swallow a tapeworm. The parasite would then help the host lose weight by mooching off his or her food. The tapeworm itself can grow to an enormous size and cause headaches, diarrhea, vomiting and even seizures. Sure, there was a pill you could take to get rid of the tapeworm, but you’d just gain all of the weight back and it could lead to long-term nutritional deficiencies.

When All Else Fails

It is documented that this diet has taken at least 60 lives. Dieters were encouraged to eat nothing but water and 400 grams of this nasty concoction containing slaughterhouse byproducts daily for months on end. This means a little less than a pound of food a day and not very nutritional food at that. You can only imagine what this meant to the bodies of those that this diet killed.

Straight Out of Twilight

The werewolf diet was based on the idea that we are made out of water. Just as the moon controls the tides, dieters think, the moon will also control the water in our bodies. So they fast when the moon is full or when it’s a new moon. Like any fasting diet, it will only mean more weight gain in the long term and it leads to being deficient in different nutrients.