I Hate Swimsuit Season! Crash Diets, Fad Diets and Diet Humor

Oh, to look this good in a swimsuit!

Remember the days when we didn't care about how we looked in a swimsuit?
Remember the days when we didn't care about how we looked in a swimsuit? | Source

I Hate Swimsuit Season

Am I alone here, or do others also hate swimsuit season? I not only hate swimsuit season; I hate reminders that swimsuit season will soon be here. I hate magazines that tell me I must get ready for swimsuit season by starting to diet NOW! Dire warnings of the coming swimsuit season usually catch up with me around mid-April when I decide I must lose twenty pounds in two weeks.

Enter fad diets. They promise quick results with just a little effort. Who cares if they are sensible or not? We just have to stick to them for a few weeks and we'll fit into that cute little swimsuit again.

Promises of quick and easy weight loss led me to try many of the fad diets that came along as well as some more sensible diet plans.

Here are some of the most popular fad diets that have enticed desperate dieters, including me, over the years:


Source

Do crash diets work? Maybe you've tried one of these

The Grapefruit and Eggs Diet

Popular in the 60's, this one made a few comebacks through the years, and it's enough to make you hate eggs forever! It advocates eating nothing but eggs and grapefruit for three meals a day for the first week. Oh, it works because the daily calorie intake averages about 400 calories a day, there is no fat, no sugar and low carbs. Grapefruit has less that 4% carbohydrates, eggs have no carbs, so you can eat five eggs and two large grapefruits a day (gag…gag!) and still consume only 332 calories in a day. Splurge and add a tomato and a whole head of lettuce and still consume less than 500 calories a day. I once lost about 20 pounds on this diet, but didn’t eat eggs or grapefruit again for years to come.

Warning about Eating Grapefruit

Do not try these diets if you are on immunosuppressants or anti-depressants as grapefruit can affect how these drugs work. There has also been research published in the the July 2007 issue of the "British Journal of Cancer" that found a link between postmenopausal women eating grapefruit and breast cancer. It seems that grapefruit can increase estrogen production which, in turn, can increase possibility of breast cancer. These side effects of eating grapefruit were not known in the 1960’s when I tried these diets, and luckily, I was not taking any medications.

Daily Calories for Grapefruit and Egg Diet

  • 1 large hard boiled egg or 1 dry friend egg = 13 calories
  • 1 large raw grapefruit=53 calories.
  • 1 whole tomato=22 calories
  • 1 head of lettuce (1 lb. 6 oz. head) =106 calories


Grapefruit Diet

On this one, you are supposed to eat a half of a grapefruit before every meal. Grapefruit is touted as a fat burning fruit. Although studies have shown that over a period of time, people who followed this practice lost a few more pounds than those who didn’t, It seems to me that the half grapefruit as an appetizer would blunt your appetite and help fill you up. And it only adds 27 calories to your meal. Before you go on this diet, be sure to read the warning at right.

WARNING! Check with your doctor before starting a diet, especially a fad diet!

Do not try these diets without checking with your doctor. This is especially important if you are on any medication or have any other health issues. You already know what she’s going to tell you, “why don’t you try this more sensible plan of cutting calories and exercising?”

Oh, COME ON! I really want to lose twenty pounds in two weeks!

Boring crash diets that work

Atkins Diet

This is easy. Just don't eat carbs. On this diet, carbohydrates are eliminated or cut drastically from your diet. That means that, with a few exceptions, no grains, breads or fruit is consumed on this diet. Sure it works, but it can be BORING, BORING, BORING! This diet not only works, but can show dramatic results. I lost 45 lbs. on this diet one year, but retaliated by going on the Christmas Cookie Diet for two whole months.

Negative Calorie Diet

I never tried this one, but the theory behind it is that there are some foods that take more energy to digest than they contain. So you can munch on apples, celery, carrots, asparagus, broccoli all you want and still lose weight. Hmmm…. sounds interesting…can I have some peanut butter with that?

The Cabbage Soup Diet

The cabbage soup made with cabbage, onions, celery, peppers and tomatoes, contains almost no calories. You’re bound to lose weight, though it might be all water and muscle tissue, not fat. It’s definitely not one you’d want to be on longer than a week. No protein, no carbs, no fat. Hey, what’s left? If you're prone to flatulence, you'd better open the windows...

There are healthy eating plans

Source

Weight Watchers... my one actual healthy diet:

Weight Watchers Diet

Oh, this one works great! It encourages healthy eating, exercise and a positive lifestyle. In 1967 I lost forty pounds at Weight Watchers. There is the support of group meetings. In 1997, I lost sixty-five pounds with Weight Watchers. It works! But it takes months of healthy eating to lose this much weight.

Healthy Diets Don't Promise Miracles

Actually, there are scads of healthy and sensible diets that work. The trouble is, they don't promise miracles. None of that "LOSE 20 POUNDS IN TWO WEEKS" stuff. On a healthy diet, you might expect to lose a pound or two a week. This is very frustrating for those of us who procrastinate with our dieting until the week before we want to go to the beach.

So, if I lost 165 lbs. on crash diets, I must be skinny, right?

Let’s see, that’s a total of 165 pounds lost on some of my favorite crash diets. You may be thinking that if I added up all the weight I lost with these various diets, I would certainly not need to worry about this year’s swimsuit season.

Well, you thought wrong! Read on for more...


Facts about dieting

  • Gain a pound a week by consuming an extra 3500 calories a week or 500 calories a day.
  • Lose a pound a week by consuming 3500 calories less per week (that's 500 calories a day less than normal).
  • Repeated cycles of weight gain and weight loss have been shown by some studies to increase chance of Type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure.
  • Some medications can cause weight gain in some people. Check the side effects of your medications and ask your doctor about them.
  • Some medical conditions cause weight gain. Check with your doctor to see if weight gain is caused by a medical condition.
  • Stress can cause weight gain. When under stress, the body secretes the stress hormone, cortisol. Cortisol causes an increased appetite. With the increased appetite, stress may make us reach for high calorie “comfort food.” No wonder we gain weight when under stress!
  • Lack of sleep can cause weight gain. Hormones secreted when you are sleep deprived can make you feel hungrier as well as not feel as full after eating.

Did I Forget to Mention Some of My Favorite Between Dieting Diets:

Stressed-out Mother's Chocolate Diet

Drink seventeen cups of coffee every day (there are benefits to drinking coffee!) and eat about a pound of chocolate with it. If you have teenagers, then add an additional 2 cups of coffee and another 6 oz. of chocolate. This is good for adding a few pounds here and a few pounds there over the years… they add up to about five pounds a year.

The Valentine’s Day Diet

Just eat boxes of luscious filled chocolates. Is it just me, or does anyone else go out and buy chocolates the day after Valentine’s Day if their sweetheart had the poor judgment to give flowers or jewelry that year? How can a two-pound box of chocolate add five pounds on the scale?

The Bagel and Muffin Breakfast Meeting Diet

This is a favorite of working men and women. Who deserves a bagel or giant muffin more that someone who has to sit through these boring, endless meetings every day? Those budget meetings can easily help you put on ten pounds.

The Danish Vacation Diet

Go to the little bakery on the corner every day during your beach vacation and have two cheese Danish with coffee. Get a cherry turnover to go for lunch. This diet is good for a nice little six pound weight gain during vacation.

The Halloween Candy Diet

So – hands please– who doesn’t go out and buy a few extra pounds of their favorite candy at Halloween just so they can have extra for the Trick or Treaters that never show up? We can fool ourselves, but we can’t fool that scale. Add five pounds.


Do You Diet?

Do you have a favorite diet?

  • Yes, the Seafood diet - See food and eat it!
  • I believe in moderation and healthy eating as a lifestyle choice,
  • Weight loss groups, like Weight Watchers, have worked best for me
  • I crash diet when I need to lose weight in a hurry.
  • I'm perfect the way I am and have no need to worry about dieting.
  • I've tried them all, from the grapefruit diet to the Christmas Cookie diet.
See results without voting

The Thanksgiving Pie Diet

Come on, nobody can be expected to pass up that pumpkin (pecan, apple, mince) pie, can they? And the stuffing, gravy, corn pudding, homemade rolls… It’s a holiday. You can’t diet on a national holiday, or the weekend after the national holiday. Add seven pounds— each Thanksgiving!

And, Last, but Not Least, The Christmas Cookie Diet

Bake cookies every day in December; eat them every day in December and January until they are gone. This diet is mandatory if you have grandchildren because it's your job to keep the cookie jar filled. Lets see, fifteen cookies a day times forty calories equals 600 calories a day times forty-five days equals…. Oh, at least fifteen pounds!

Vintage Bathing Suits

Vintage Bathing Suits. Now these bathing suits pulled you in and pushed you out in all the right places!
Vintage Bathing Suits. Now these bathing suits pulled you in and pushed you out in all the right places! | Source

What to do about swimsuit season?

It's fast approaching! What can we do? Well, people, here's the thing... you can't have your cake and look good in a bikini, too. Take it from an experienced yo-yo dieter, crash diets are not the way to go. If you are "pleasingly plump," you have several options:

  • Accept yourself as you are. Come to terms with your nature and allow yourself to be who you are without feeling guilty.
  • Shop for slimming swimsuits. Shop around for the most slimming swimsuits, and call it good.
  • Wear a cover-up. Tell everyone you burn easily, and wear an attractive beach cover-up at all times.
  • Start a sensible eating/exercise program. Start a sensible lifelong eating program that includes a balanced, healthy diet as well as regular exercise.

As for me, I've decided that at my age, it's o.k. not to look like a teenager, or even a 40 year-old. I will enjoy the beach and swim in the ocean. I'll wear shorts when it's hot. I am who I am— take it or leave it!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Copyright ©2011 Stephanie Henkel

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Oh, the heck with it —Have some chocolate!

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I'd love to hear your comments 33 comments

Niki Hampton profile image

Niki Hampton 5 years ago from Oregon

Great hub! And, no you are not alone. I completely ignore the so called "swimsuit season hype". I don't even swim so there's no reason to wear a swimsuit. I am 28 weeks preggers due in July and guarantee you there won't be much, if any, swimsuit spotting of me this year. I believe healthy weight loss and self-love should far extend over the guilt and pressure to be swimsuit ready.

I can't stand those cereal diets either. The Special K diet where you can eat nothing but cereal for two weeks and lose 5 pounds. Well, first of all, duh! And, second no one at your class reunion is going to know or notice that you were 5 pounds heavier. It's a bunch of crap and perpetuates the cycle of extreme dieting and weight loss that just comes back when you start eating normally again.


Stephanie Henkel profile image

Stephanie Henkel 5 years ago from USA Author

Hi Niki, Congratulations on your pregnancy! Having actually fallen for the hype more than once, I can attest to the fact that weight loss from crash diets is anything but permanent, but it's so tempting to try those "magic" diets that promise a new figure in 2 weeks or less. Thanks for stopping by and for your comments.


Simone Smith profile image

Simone Smith 5 years ago from San Francisco

Hahaa, great Hub! I've never gone on a crash diet before, but they certainly sound gross!! Grapefruit and eggs only? Blergh!!

What a fun, enjoyable read- thanks so much for writing this!


ChristineMargaret profile image

ChristineMargaret 5 years ago from Rapid City, SD

Such a timely article for me! I am going to 40th reunion and really would like to slim down, but instead I gained a pound. I know I need to get back to Healthy Eating and exercise, and drinking more water! Easier said than done.


Charlu profile image

Charlu 5 years ago from Florida

I love this hub and have tried all those crash diets and a few more, but then there's my love of all those foods you mentioned especially pumpkin pie, and chocolate. OK I have to stop now I'm getting hungry. Absolutely love this HUB. It's funny awesome and up. Thanks and Congrats on your win.


Jean Bakula 5 years ago

I find that tankini bathing suits are quite flattering. They aren't like those "old lady" ones with a skirted bottom. But they are 2 pieces, the panties, and a top that goes about 2 or 3 inches over the bottoms, so they are very forgiving! Land's End has them, but they are too expensive there, they are getting popular and should be easy to find now! Best of luck!


K9keystrokes profile image

K9keystrokes 5 years ago from Northern, California

Funny stuff Stephanie! I remember the grapefruit diet, and it was not a tasty choice. Congratulations on you daily drawing win today. Thanks for a fun read.

K9


Stephanie Henkel profile image

Stephanie Henkel 5 years ago from USA Author

Thanks everyone! I'm so pleased to be the daily drawing winner today!

@Simone - Blergh just says it all when it comes to some of the fad diets that have been popular through the years! The only thing that got me through them was knowing that the Christmas Cookie diet was coming up. LOL!

@ChristineMargaret - It's amazing how those class reunions inspire you to diet, isn't it? Good luck!

@Charlu - Hahaha... one of the main problems with going on a diet is that you start thinking about food a lot more! Hmmm...chocolate, you say?

@K9 - Thanks, I'm glad you enjoyed my hub! Those grapefruits were o.k., it was the eggs that got to me... :)


Green Lotus profile image

Green Lotus 5 years ago from Atlanta, GA

Funny and informative! I have to admit I believe at one time or another, I've been on every one of the diets you've featured. Congrats on your win!!


Stephanie Henkel profile image

Stephanie Henkel 5 years ago from USA Author

Hi Green Lotus,

The funny thing is, I still like to read about the newest, craziest fad diet! Thanks for visiting my hub!


Tamila Roberts profile image

Tamila Roberts 5 years ago from Canada

Quite a diet you got there. It's ok you might still be able to grow taller if you lose weight Ok.


Denise Handlon profile image

Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

Great advice and humor. LOved it. :)


Stephanie Henkel profile image

Stephanie Henkel 5 years ago from USA Author

Glad you enjoyed it Denise! Thanks for visiting. :)


CMHypno profile image

CMHypno 5 years ago from Other Side of the Sun

Great hub Stephanie. How about the champagne and strawberries diet? I never worry about the swimsuit thing - I just get my bikini out as I like to stretch out in the sun!


Peggy W profile image

Peggy W 5 years ago from Houston, Texas

Loved this as I can relate to it perfectly...all except the healthy weight watcher's diet. I still like grapefruit and eggs and cabbage soup! Haha! Congratulations on your win. Up and funny votes!


Stephanie Henkel profile image

Stephanie Henkel 5 years ago from USA Author

CMHypno - Hmmm...strawberries and champagne...that might be the next hot fad, though I think the bikini is out for me!


Stephanie Henkel profile image

Stephanie Henkel 5 years ago from USA Author

Hi Peggy, I have to admit that I still love grapefruit, especially the fresh pink grapefruit that we got in the Rio Grand Valley a couple of years ago! Thanks for reading for for your votes!


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 5 years ago from Baltimore, MD

Thank you for this hub! I loved it. I have recently fallen victim to the Easter Candy Diet. Now I really need to scramble if I am going to fit into a small bathing suit. I can't help it if Cadbury Eggs and chocolate bunnies are so delicious!


Stephanie Henkel profile image

Stephanie Henkel 5 years ago from USA Author

Haha, Jeannieinabottle! I've recently been on that diet, but mine also called for handfuls of jelly beans. Oh, dear, is it back to the grapefruit and eggs? Thanks for stopping by!


Suramya.K 5 years ago

You're defintely not alone here Stephanie, I don't like swimming season either. Although I don't wear swimsuits (coz I'm a boy), I hate swimming coz I don't want to show my valuable assets...LOL.

I don't really go for dieiting, but I love to indulge myself in chocolates..

You have great hubs!!


Stephanie Henkel profile image

Stephanie Henkel 5 years ago from USA Author

Yes, Suramya, keep those valuable assets under wraps! LOL!

Thanks for stopping by and commenting. Now let's have a little chocolate...


The Bucket Lister profile image

The Bucket Lister 5 years ago

I love the in-between diets! I think I'll try the Danish Vacation Diet! :)


Stephanie Henkel profile image

Stephanie Henkel 5 years ago from USA Author

Hi Bucket Lister, Love that Danish vacation diet! Cheese Danish, Cherry Danish... mmmm....Thanks for stopping by!


kittythedreamer profile image

kittythedreamer 5 years ago from the Ether

I'm sure the cabbage soup was delicious...but not as a full diet! Bleh! I have to totally agree with the fact that swimsuit season is STUPID. And it is also STUPID that magazines and the media only give us warnings two months (or less) in advance as to when swimsuit season begins! Total BS! Anyway, forget the diets...just be healthy and happy...that's all I say. Voted up and awesome.


Stephanie Henkel profile image

Stephanie Henkel 5 years ago from USA Author

Hi Kitty, Uhh, oh! Swimsuit season is here! I think I will just take your advice this year and be healthy and happy! The ocean doesn't really care what size swimsuit I wear. :)


bingogunter profile image

bingogunter 5 years ago from Oxford, Mississippi

This hub is great. I've been on all of these diets (some more than once). I'm back on WW but I'm actually working out this time! Thanks for the giggles.


Stephanie Henkel profile image

Stephanie Henkel 5 years ago from USA Author

Bingogunter, Good for you! I had the most success with WW,too. Thanks for visiting my hub - glad you got a laugh out of it!


Charlotte B Plum profile image

Charlotte B Plum 5 years ago

really enjoyed how you weaved everything together. And you have a great sense of humor too!


Stephanie Henkel profile image

Stephanie Henkel 5 years ago from USA Author

Thanks, Charlotte. What can one do but laugh when there are so many good excuses not to diet? Thanks for your comments and for reading my hub.


gryphin423 profile image

gryphin423 5 years ago from Florida

The Christmas cookie diet I am very familiar with! Totally enjoyed your hub and had some giggles.


Stephanie Henkel profile image

Stephanie Henkel 5 years ago from USA Author

Hi Gryphin, Yes, we all have our favorite diets, don't we? Glad you got some giggles from my hub. Save a cookie for me...I feel a diet coming on!


Melovy profile image

Melovy 4 years ago from UK

Fun hub. The negative calorie diet sounds an interesting concept - can eating really use more calories than it adds? I remember reading that some nuts have this effect even though they are high in calories - something to do with how it converts in the body but I don’t know if it’s true. I am very lucky because I’ve never really had a weight issue, and nowadays I naturally prefer healthy foods - though I also love cakes as a treat. I’d love the bagels and muffin breakfast meeting diet, but not every day.


Stephanie Henkel profile image

Stephanie Henkel 4 years ago from USA Author

Melovy - I'm not sure if the negative calorie diet works - it's one of the few fad diets that I never tried! You are lucky to be among those who do not have weight issues. It sounds like your "junk food gene" was never turned on!

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