Weight-loss diets can impact the brain negatively (e.g., disrupt synthesis of neurotransmitters, alter brain chemistry, decrease intelligence, trigger mental processing problems). Avoid all crash diets (e.g., less than 1000 calories per day) or rapid weight-loss diets. You can shed smarts as well as pounds if you’re not careful. (Greenwood-Robinson, Maggie, PhD. 20/20 Thinking. NY: Avery, Putnam Special Markets, 2003, pp 185-194)

When you diet the body thinks its starving and becomes more efficient at holding onto the calories you ingest and stingier at giving them up for exercise. You may lose some weight initially, but your body has been “reprogrammed,” when you stop dieting you will gain your weight back faster and eventually go up to a higher weight than before. (Bost, Brent W., MD, FACOG. Hurried Woman Syndrome. NY: Vantage Press, 2001, p 84)

Dieting starves the brain of serotonin. This can trigger a cycle of dieting and bingeing as there isn’t enough serotonin to signal satisfaction. (Brynie, Faith Hickman. 101 Questions Your Brain Has Asked About Itself But Couldn’t Answer, Until Now. CT: Millbrook Press, 1998, pp 38-43)

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