Cabbage soup diet is very appealing to dieters as it claims to lose about 10 pounds within seven days. If you want to try this diet plan, it makes sense to know whether it is a fad or a fix diet.
The proponents of this diet claim that consuming large amount of cabbage soup is a good way to lose weight quickly. It’s because the cabbage soup diet limits the calorie intake.
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However, you need to be extra careful in following this diet because you may not only lose fat and water, but also muscle.
What is Cabbage Soup Diet?
Many people don’t know exactly what a cabbage diet soup is. This diet plan is low in protein, vitamins, minerals and complex carbohydrates. It does not guarantee giving you the complete nutrition that your body needs.
Within the seven days’ diet plan, you will only eat homemade cabbage soup. The good thing is that you can also eat at least one other food like fruit or vegetables or skim milk. Cabbage contains less calorie that enables your body to burn more calories.
This means that the more soup or the frequent you eat this diet; you can expect losing more weight. Nevertheless, it is not recommended to follow this fad diet more than a week. It serves as a slimming down process prior of starting a long-term diet plan.
The cabbage diet plan is commonly offered to patients before undergoing a heart surgery.
Does Cabbage Soup Diet Really Work?
Since the cabbage soup diet is a low-calorie diet, in a way it can lose weight. But, there’s no strong evidence supported by a study confirming its effectiveness.
Although this diet plan allows eating specific foods along with the soup, the choices are limited. That’s why it’s difficult to keep your body weight. In fact, there is a possibility to regain the weight lost once you stop the diet.
Cabbage soup diet restricts calorie intake enabling your body to lose more weight. However, it compromises your metabolic rate in such a way that you may burn fewer calories. During the first three days of your diet program, your metabolism will start to slow down (1, 2, 3).
This diet plan may work with obese people, but it should be supervised by a doctor. Usually, a low-calorie diet typically last from 4 to 12 weeks to achieve the best results in terms of metabolic health and weight loss (4, 5).
Is There Any Limitations of the Cabbage Soup Diet?
Just like any other weight loss plan, the cabbage soup diet has its own limitations. Generally, you should follow and practice this diet plan for just a week because it can cause calorie and carbohydrate deficiency.
As mentioned above, a cabbage soup diet is a low-calorie diet. This means that your calorie intake is restricted and carbohydrate as well.
This will lower your energy levels, thus giving you insufficient energy to do your everyday activities. Your system may collapse if you become weak that may lead to illness or complications.
Since cabbage soup contains more water, this may make you feel bloated and not full. Thus, you’ll feel hungry soon and the fact that your food intake is limited there’s great possibility that you may become irritable and lack of focus.
Cabbage Soup Diet Recipe
- 1/2 large head cabbage
- 1 cup celery, diced
- 1 cup white or yellow onion, diced
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 14 oz can basil, oregano,
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1 teaspoon basil
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- few shakes of black pepper
- 1 cup carrots, diced
- 1 bell pepper, diced
- 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 bulb of garlic, sliced
- 1 lbs tomatoes, crushed
Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Saute all veggie except for cabbage and tomatoes in it. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat. Add fresh or dried herbs simmer 5 minutes and season to taste. Serve and enjoy!
7 Day Cabbage Diet plan
If you’re desperate enough to lose weight quickly, you can the cabbage diet plan. But, before starting you should know the rules that you need to follow from day 1 to day 7.
On the first day of the program, aside from the cabbage soup you are allowed to eat any fruit except bananas. You can drink either water or cranberry juice or unsweetened teas.
On day two, you’re required to eat more cabbage soup and variants of vegetables like kale or spinach. You can eat the veggies cooked, raw or combined. The vegetables will keep your hunger at bay.
During lunch or dinner, you can eat baked potato to keep you full. But, you should not eat fruit, corn, peas and dry beans.
During the third day you can eat unlimited cabbage soup. You can also consume fruits and vegetables but no potato on this day.
Day four seems to be a cheat day as you can satisfy your cravings for sugary foods. This means that you can eat maximum of eight bananas along with skimmed milk. But, you need also to eat more cabbage soup.
As you reach the fifth day of the diet plan, you’re now allowed to eat real food along with the cabbage soup. You can consume 10 to 20 ounces of fresh tomatoes and beef. You should expect that the uric acid in your body will escalate that’s why you should drink plenty of water.
You can eat some chicken or beef and veggies, but don’t forget the cabbage soup. You must not eat potato on the sixth day.
On the last day of the program, you can eat a bowl of cabbage soup. The good news is that you can pair the soup with brown rice, some veggies and unsweetened fruit juices. Make sure to drink plenty of water.
Fad diets like this one may be tempting, but keep in mind that long-term weight loss depends on making lasting healthy changes (6).
The DO’s and DON’Ts of the Cabbage Soup Diet
- Stick to water or you can find alternative beverages but make sure it does not contain high calorie.
- Consume as many bowls of soup as you want to satisfy your hunger.
- You can take multi-vitamin while following the cabbage soup diet.
- The cabbage soup diet isn’t recommended for people who have special dietary needs and health complications.
- Don’t add salt substitute to your soup, but you can add a little spice.
A cabbage soup diet is a fad diet is a short-term weight loss program that does not guarantee long-term and guaranteed results.
Accourding to Dr. Melinda Ratini:
You’ll likely get less than 1,000 calories a day on the limited menu. That’s far fewer than the 2,000 daily calories recommended for most adults (7).
There’s nothing wrong getting into diet, but make sure that it won’t compromise your health. Likewise, to ensure the best results of your weight loss efforts, the best thing to do is to make a lasting healthy changes to your eating habits and be physically active.
Janice Thompson is a nutritionist. She loves to share her healthy lifestyle and diet tips.