Liquid diets are used for many different purposes including weight loss. An upcoming surgery or an intestine of illness may also require a liquid diet but with a different objective. You may be on a liquid diet for cleansing purposes.
Then you have variations in which you have 1 or 2 liquid meals and the third diet is a solid diet or you can be on an all liquid diet for days, weeks or even months.
Whatever your goal is to use a liquid diet, one thing is sure that it has to be done under the supervision of a doctor to ensure that you get balanced nutrients. Otherwise your weight loss dreams can turn into other health related complications.
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An all liquid diet is a very low calorie diet in which no solid food is eaten. This kind of diet is generally undertaken for quick weight loss. Since this is a very low calorie diet (VLCD) chances of malnutrition are very high which can lead to Kidney Diseases and heart problems.
Other liquid diets are a combination of liquid and solid diets to achieve the same weight loss objectives. They are less of a problem as some nutrients still remain less.
All liquid diets are not only required for quick weight loss but sometimes they are a medical necessity for certain types of surgeries in which you have to lose weight. Your doctor in that case will prescribe you a specific kind of liquid diet and regularly monitor your nutrient profile before the surgery.
However if you plan to take up a liquid diet for your personal weight loss program then you must understand that it should be done strictly under doctor's supervision. Otherwise you may get into health complications.
First of all if you are a pregnant or nursing woman, taking insulin for diabetes or suffering from any chronic illness then you should avoid liquid diet.
Since an all liquid diet can give you maximum weight loss quickly it is still not advisable to go for it because of the malnutrition problems it may create.
If you are overweight but otherwise healthy then you can try the following liquid diet with some elements of solid food to achieve your weight loss objectives. Here you will be replacing one or two of your regular meals with a liquid diet. Even though you are partially going on a liquid diet, do it under a doctor's supervision for best results without any complications.
You can make one or more of the following meals as a liquid diet.
You can go for fruit juices. But fruit juice alone may cause acidity on an empty stomach. So cooked oatmeal porridge can be added to keep it more of a liquid diet with enough fiber and carb.
Or you can go for fruit and vegetables smoothies in yogurt or kefir added with crushed almonds, walnuts and flaxseeds. This kind smoothie made with different fruit or different combinations will be a healthy way to start your day with a liquid diet.
Ensure that your smoothies don't become a very high calorie liquid diet otherwise all the weight loss benefits will be lost.
You can stick to pureed soup. Make it yourself to avoid preservatives in readily available soups.
Strain the soup to avoid solid chunks. Add yogurt or avocado etc to increase nutritional contents. You can also add a vegetable juice to complement the soup.
Change the soup ingredients daily for enjoying variety.
You can take a liquid diet either during lunch or dinner and keep the other meal as a normal healthy solid meal with less fat and less refined carbs.
So you can have the following combinations to play with and can rotate them weekly.
- Breakfast with liquid diet and lunch and dinner solid
- Breakfast liquid plus either lunch and dinner solid
- Breakfast solid diet and lunch or dinner liquid diet
Changing food items regularly will maintain proper nutrients balance. Monitor your nutritional profile during the liquid diet period to avoid any side effects.
You may face the following side effects of liquid diet if the nutrition requirements are not monitored properly.
- Gastrointestinal problems
- Kidney problems
- Heart problems
- Hair Loss
So be careful and strictly follow your doctors instructions. Do not do it without doctors supervision.
If you can't follow liquid diet for weight loss then you can use the following other methods to lose weight
- Go for regular strenuous exercise
- Stop eating junk foods
- Avoid red meat
- Avoid high carbs, switch to low carb and full grain
- Eat more vegetables and fruits
- Don't overeat
- Reduce stress
- Stay hydrated. Drink 8-10 glasses of water
All liquid diets for weight loss may fall short of your daily calorie intake. This is not particularly healthy if you don't consume enough nutrients. Malnutrition can lead to many complications. Take the following precautions if you plan to follow liquid diet for some time
- Do it under a doctor's supervision to counter malnutrition with supplements
- You will have a tendency to gain weight fast when you get back to normal diet.
- You may have difficulties in getting back to normal diet.
- Avoid dairy products completely if you have lactose intolerance otherwise you will get gastrointestinal troubles.
- Be more careful if you have diabetes, high blood pressure, kidney disease or heart disease
Bottomline is you must get all your nutrients daily. So, remember that if you are on a liquid diet for long term then the goal of getting all nutrients is difficult to achieve without a doctor's regular monitoring.