There’s a new diet trend in town that has gone viral and has the potential to kill people who indulge in it: the cotton ball diet. In this fad diet, people eat anywhere from one to five cotton balls saturated in juice or included in a smoothie. It’s being reported that models have been using this diet for a long time, but it’s just now hitting the mainstream thanks to viral trends on YouTube and Facebook.
The cotton ball diet involves filling up the stomach so dieters will feel full and consequently eat less food and consume fewer calories. However, it may kill dieters in a variety of unpleasant ways. The first way is via a possible intestinal obstruction. The cotton balls have the potential to get stuck in the intestines, leading to dehydration, a buildup of waste, death of the intestinal tract and damage to internal organs. An obstruction can eventually cause the body to shut down if left untreated. Even if the person does get prompt treatment, they could face dangerous surgery which can lead to life-threatening complications.
The second way this diet has the potential to kill dieters is through choking. Since the cotton balls are generally swallowed whole, they do not break down, and that means they can easily get stuck in the esophagus, leading to an episode of choking that could be fatal, especially if the person is alone when they try to ingest the cotton balls.
The third way the cotton ball diet can kill is through causing a person to become severely malnourished. Since cotton balls are not food and are not fit for human consumption, eating them can rob the body of vital vitamins and minerals that are essential to good health. Over time, severe problems and death could occur.
Most cotton balls do not even contain cotton, but are made of synthetic ingredients that carry toxins into the body when eaten. A buildup of these toxins over time could cause serious problems and organ damage. Even if the dieter eats totally organic cotton, intestinal blockages and malnutrition could occur.
The trend is spreading like wildfire throughout social media. YouTube videos show girls dipping the cotton in juice and then swallowing them. One girl dips the cotton in orange juice, attempts to “chew” it, and then swallows it nearly whole and says “yum! I ate some cotton!”
The cotton ball diet has gone viral and it has the potential to kill dieters who attempt it. Social media can be a great media for sharing ideas, but some ideas, say health experts, are better left unshared. This is definitely one such idea. Health experts have issued firm warnings about the myriad health dangers someone can face if they attempt to follow the so-called diet. For otherwise healthy people who get clearance from their personal physicians, experts recommend a balanced eating plan rich in fruits, whole grains and vegetables, plenty of vigorous exercise and portion reduction as the best way to lose weight.
By: Rebecca Savastio