The cabbage soup diet has been in and out of popularity for decades, but it seems to be having a moment again now. Why is this diet so popular?
The cabbage soup diet promotes rapid weight loss, and dieters have reported losing 10 pounds in just one week. You can eat fruits, veggies and proteins as well as the soup to stop your taste buds getting jaded with the taste of cabbage, and it’s also easy on your wallet.
This diet is not recommended for long-term weight loss, and doing it continuously can weaken your immunity and cause all sorts of health issues. For a quick fix to get into that dress for the party next week, or as a boost at the start of a weight loss plan, the cabbage soup diet shows quick results.
How Does It Work?
The cabbage soup diet helps shock your metabolism into action and starts fat mobilization. Because it’s very low calorie, your body is forced to use your fat stores as an energy source.
Cabbage soup is sometimes prescribed for obese patients as it’s high in fiber and low in calories – only 20 cal per 100g of soup. Cabbage also contains vitamins and other nutrients, so is a good addition to your diet.
On days 5 and 6 of the diet, you should add some lean beef, chicken or fish to your main meal.
Here’s the Recipe
This is the original cabbage soup diet recipe, and is easy to make at home.
- 10 ounces/4 cups of chopped fresh cabbage
- 6 cups vegetable broth or water
- 1 yellow onion
- 3 or 4 beans
- 2 celery ribs
- 1/3 cup Korean den jang
- 1 thinly sliced carrot
- 6 finely chopped garlic cloves
- 3 thinly sliced mushrooms
- Salt and a little sugar for taste 1 teaspoon sesame oil Coriander (cilantro) leaves and a pinch of black pepper for garnishing
Boil the vegetable broth in a large soup pan. Add all the ingredients and stir well. Put it on the stove for 15 minutes or so on a low heat. When it boils, add the sugar and salt. When the veggies are tender, add sesame oil, and coriander leaves if using.
Benefits of the Cabbage Soup Diet
1. Quick Weight Loss
Fans of this diet claim that it causes more weight loss in the same period compared to other diets, and it is said you can lose up to 10 pounds in 7 days.
2. Keeps Hunger Pangs at Bay
You can stay comfortably full on this diet because you can have as much soup as you want, along with an unlimited amount of fruits and vegetables, as well as meat on specific days. Even baked potatoes are on the menu!
3. Provides Energy
When you first start out on this diet, you may feel weak and light-headed because you’re not used to it, and the toxins are leaving your body.
Not everyone feels like this, but even if you do, the symptoms should disappear by day four. You will then experience a boost in your energy levels.
The diet gives you plenty of vitamins and nutrients, as it is centered around the cabbage soup, as well as unlimited fruits and vegetables. Meat and fish will help you keep your protein levels high.
5. Easy and Inexpensive
Cabbage, fruits and veggies form the mainstay of this diet, and they are not very expensive compared to processed foods.
You don’t have to follow complex meal plans, nor do you have to exercise. As it’s not a long-term diet, you will feel great as you purge your body of toxins that have built up.
Possible Side Effects
On the flip side of the coin, there could be side effects to following this diet, so you should make a considered decision about the diet once you’ve made note of all the pros and cons.
1. Short-Term Starvation
Soup, fruits and veggies are great, but your body needs healthy fats and complex carbs to keep your hunger at bay, and they are not allowed during this diet. This could make you feel very hungry, especially if you eat a lot of them to begin with.
2. Can Cause Flatulence
Consuming large amounts of cabbage, fruits and vegetables can cause a build up of gas, and make you feel bloated.
As the diet involves a drastic reduction in calories, your energy levels may drop and you could experience fatigue.
4. Not Nutritionally Balanced
The cabbage soup diet has not been set up in a nutritionally balanced way, as it doesn’t allow for too much consumption of carbohydrates and proteins. If you only follow it for a week, it won’t cause long-term problems, but if you do it regularly, or for longer than a week, it could cause nutritional deficiencies.
5. Frequent Urination
The water in the soup and fruits can cause you to urinate more than usual. Cabbage is also a natural diuretic, which means it promotes the removal of water from your body through urination.
The lack of calories could end up making you feel light-headed and dizzy, and the lack of carbs and fats can cause you to get fatigued enough to faint.
7. Mood Swings
You may feel moody and irritable, especially during the first few days of the diet when you feel tired. You may also suffer from headaches, which won’t improve your general mood!