Episode 13: Fad Diets

In 2003, Dr. Neal Barnard, a member of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine stated on CBS’s Early Show that a 16-year-old girl collapsed and died at school (from a heart abnormality) and another a 41-year-old male had the same fate, no history of heart issues -- both were on low carb, high fat, high protein diets (aka, the Atkins diet). A third case showed a massive blockage in the heart. Over the last decade, research has shown that fad diets don’t work as advertised, it’s followers put weight back on quickly, and more often than not - they are unhealthy for our mental and physical health. Knowing this, why do people get involved with fad diets and other similar “lose weight fast” schemes? Are there other underlying social issues propelling people towards these frenzies?