Be cautious with quick fix workouts and diets

By Casey Frye, CCNN Writer

juice cleanse drink
Wheat grass, cauliflower, broccoli, lemon juice, apples, and carrots. All blended together. Disgusting or healthy? Probably a bit of both!

Alright, so running around the block until you’re bathed in sweat or chomping on celery sticks might not be anyone’s idea of a good time, but health is important! Sometimes, it’s tempting to take a look at special diets and exercise plans that seem easier and promise amazing results.

Beware, though! They might just sound too good to be true, because some of them really are. Here’s a few popular tricks that could very well be pulling the trick on the person doing them!

Our first shady shortcut? Juice cleanses. You guzzle down some fancy-schmancy juicy potions from special companies, and drink the supposedly magical elixirs for 3-5 days. Nothing else. Yah, like not even a single chip. Just the juice. Sounds bizarre? Yep! Not only that, but the main pounds you’ll be shedding are just water weight.

If your metabolism – the chemical processes in your body that help regulate weight gain and loss – thinks your body is starving, it’ll slow down, so that when you actually start eating real food, your pounds will leap right back onto your bones! So, while these juice cleanses are okay to do every now and then for no more than 3 days, don’t get suckered in to buying the often overpriced special juices.

Next up, is hot yoga, where folks do some hardcore twisty body poses in a super hot 105-degree studio. While having to move in that sweaty environment might take a bit more effort, and thus burn a few more calories, most of the lost weight is… you guessed it… water.

Heck, the floor will be so covered in sweat, you’ll be wondering where all that water was being held! So, rather than passing out in some smelly studio, just stick to good old jogging, swimming, or power yoga. That being said, there’s plenty of people who really love hot yoga, and find it incredibly relaxing. Just don’t make it your only source of exercise!

The last stop we’ll make on today’s tour of questionable fat-burning strategies is the “alkaline diet,” which believes that you can achieve strong health by avoiding certain foods that affect the acid in your body. That means no meat, caffeine, or sugar products, and chowing down instead on more nuts than a squirrel and nibbling lots of plants instead. While this diet does have some decent advice, like avoiding sugar, eating healthy nuts, and munching on leafy greens, there’s much better balanced diet plans that don’t have any extreme anti-acid food steps to keep track of.

So, moral of the story? Just keep it simple. Exercise. Eat right. Do some research on what your body needs. Don’t, however, go spending tons of money on silly stuff that sounds mysterious or time-saving!

Image of juice courtesy of Mikepabell on Wikipedia. Image and video of hot yoga courtesy of Bikram Yoga London on YouTube.