In the yo-yo dieting, you lose and gain weight in the same manner as the up and down motion of a yo-yo. Read the article below to learn more on what is yo-yo diet cycle and what are its dangers.

What Is Yo-Yo Dieting

Yo-yo dieting is the result that most people face when they go for quick fix solutions to lose weight. Being on a yo-yo diet means that initially, you lose weight fast due to a particular diet. However, since you cannot sustain such a diet for a long time, you come back to your normal eating routine. This would have been fine to a certain extent, but what happens is that during your strict diet regime, a sense of deprivement builds within you. All those days you had suppressed your cravings and your hunger has an effect on you and you suddenly break forth from the strict regime. The end result is that soon after following a strict diet, you end up going on an eating binge. Naturally, the body is not able to cope with the excess calories and starts accumulating them as fat. Then, the guilt sets in and the excess pounds make you unbearable. You again join a crash diet to control the weight and thus, the cycle continues. The term 'yo-yo dieting' was coined by Kelly D. Brownell to describe the cyclical yo-yo motion that results from adopting a crash diet. Read on to know more about yo-yo dieting.
Yo-Yo Diet Cycle
  • The yo-yo diet cycle starts with the adoption of a quick weight loss diet plan. This results in a low metabolic rate, due to not exercising. The weight is lost drastically.
  • The next stage comes when this diet is stopped. There is more consumption of food that before. In fact, it may even be more than what was before the diet.
  • The net result is weight gain.
  • Once again, the diet plan is adopted and weight reduction starts.
  • Soon, the diet stops again and the normal (or extra) eating resumes.
  • This weight gain and weight loss goes on and on, forming the yo-yo diet cycle.
Dangers Of Yo-Yo Diet

Weight Gain

In yo-yo dieting, the metabolic rate of the body gets lowered, to adapt to the chronic dieting pattern. So, when the regular eating pattern is started, the body fails to utilize the excess calories and there is a gain in weight.

Muscle Mass

The yo-yo diet results in the loss of lean body mass, since the muscles are more metabolically active. This loss in muscle mass can drop the metabolic rate further and so, it will be even harder for the body to lose weight.

Stubborn Fat

There is a huge build up of stubborn fat due to yo-yo dieting. This fat is hard to lose as it metabolizes slowly.

Affected Fat Storing System

The yo-yo dieting adversely affects the fat metabolizing effects of the body, making it very difficult to slim down.

Affected Hormones

The sudden weight gain and weight loss results in hormonal changes in the body. In women, this can cause irregular periods.

Mood Swings

The frequent loss and gain of weight can lead to a dip in the serotonin levels (which enhance the mood). As a result, there are more chances of falling in a depression. There is also more secretion of cortisol, as a result of physical stress, which makes the fat accumulate in the abdominal region.


Quick fix diet plans do not recommend high fiber foods, which leads to the disruption of bowel movements, in turn causing constipation.
How To Break Yo-Yo Diet Cycle
  • Quick-fix weight loss is not the solution to excess fat. Keep away from the fads that promise instant weight loss.
  • Be on a weight loss programme that helps you shed less than 2 pounds per week.
  • Exercise the large muscles regularly. Walking, running, and cycling are a good option.
  • Prepare a routine where you have many small meals in a day, rather than a couple of large ones.
  • Bring a change in your lifestyle.
  • Increase the metabolism rate of yoru body through physical activity.
  • Take care not to skip breakfast.

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