Cabbage Soup Diet
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The Cabbage soup diet is a radical weight loss diet designed around heavy consumption of a low-calorie cabbage soup over the time of seven days. It is generally considered a fad diet, in that it is designed for short-term weight-loss and requires no long-term commitment. It has inspired several copy-cats based around similar principles.

The typical claimed intent of the diet is to lose 10 pounds (4.5 kg) of weight in a week, though nutritional experts point out that it is nearly impossible to lose that much fat within a week. This has lent credence to claims that much of the weight lost is water.
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Background
The origins of the diet are unknown, and it first gained popularity as a piece of faxlore in the 1980s. The cabbage soup diet has many names, usually linking the diet to a mainstream institution, including the "Sacred Heart Diet", "Military Cabbage Soup", "TJ Miracle Soup Diet", "General Motors Diet" and "Russian Peasant Diet". All of the institutions named have denied a link with the diet. As a general rule, most if not all forms of the diet emphasize that the dieter can consume as much cabbage soup as he/she wants. On some original documents mentioning the diet, it was claimed the diet is designed for obese heart-surgery patients, so they could lose weight quickly and therefore be at lower risk of complications during surgery. However, these claims remain unverified.
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Recipe
6 large green onions
2 green peppers
2 cans of tomatoes (diced or whole)
1 bunch celery
1/2 head cabbage
1 package dry onion soup mix
1 or 2 cubes bouillon/ stock cubes either chicken or beef (optional)

Salt, pepper, parsley, garlic powder, curry powder or soy sauce to taste (or any other seasoning you like).
Spray a large pot with cooking spray and sauté all vegetables except cabbage and tomatoes until tender. Add cabbage and about 12 cups (2.83 litres) of water. Toss in bouillon cubes, soup mix, and seasoning. Cook until soup reaches desired tenderness. Add tomatoes.

To keep the recipe interesting you can make a base soup and then add seasoning/ herbs each day for different flavours.

Note: There are a number of variations to this recipe.

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Diet
Beverages are limited to water, and unsweetened fruit juice on days when fruit is allowed. This is a typical outline of the diet:

Day 1 - Cabbage soup plus as much fruit as you like, excluding bananas
Day 2 - Cabbage soup plus vegetables including 1 jacket (baked) potato with a little butter
Day 3 - Cabbage soup plus fruit and vegetables excluding potatoes and bananas
Day 4 - Cabbage soup plus up to eight bananas and as much skimmed milk as you like
Day 5 - Cabbage soup plus up to 10 ounces of beef and up to six tomatoes
Day 6 - Cabbage soup plus as much beef and vegetables (excluding potatoes) as you like
Day 7 - Cabbage soup plus brown rice, vegetables (excluding potatoes) and unsweetened fruit juice
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Criticism
Many individuals and medical professionals are critical of the diet. It's claimed that most of the weight lost is water and not fat, and therefore not permanent. In addition, the recipe for the soup as often given has an extremely high sodium content, usually to make it palatable, and the diet provides practically zero protein for several days at a time. Many people report feeling weak and light-headed during the course of the diet.

On a practical level, the most common forms of the soup recipe have been criticized as being bland, though spicy variations have appeared. Even so, the blandness of the soup means that few manage the entire seven days, and often report feeling nauseous whenever they smell the soup toward the end of the week-long diet. It has also been noted that flatulence is a common side effect of the diet.

This diet is extreme. Many days do not contain any protein. For active individuals on this diet, this can lead to muscle reduction, reducing the Basal metabolic rate, thus slowing down the weight loss process itself, and making it unhealthy.
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Urban Legend
Some claim that after 2+ weeks on the original diet, or especially the Sacred Heart variant, a substantial increase in ones libido is coupled with an overall increase in energy levels. Rumors of an increase in production of pheromones which attract the opposite sex are, as yet, scientifically unsubstantiated. However there is evidence that a diet high in vegetables and low in processed sugars can significantly improve ones libido and general health.
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Recipe changes
A frequent comment on the soup is that it makes a good low-calorie filler meal, but is not substantial enough to be relied upon as a dietary staple. The newer, healthier versions of the cabbage soup diet however take the fact of missing protein into account and add protein (dairy and protein shakes) to the diet plan while decreasing sodium.
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External links
Utah State University commentary on fad diets
Dangers Of The Cabbage Soup Diet! - By Dr. Kathleen Zelman, MPH, RD, LD

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See More How-To Articles:
How to drink more water everyday
Make a non alcoholic coctail
How to lose weight fast
How to eat healthy over the holidays









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Resources: This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses some material from Wikipedia/article cabbagesoup © /  and other related pages. Top photo:

References
1. Merriam-Webster Dictionary, ides
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