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The Cambridge Diet has developed as a very low calorie diet (VLCD) and is now used as both a VLCD and as the foundation for a range of weight management programs. The diet uses pre-packaged foods and the company claims that all the programs are based around a nutritionally complete formula food providing 100% of the Recommended Daily Allowance of all vitamins, minerals and trace elements. However, the Cambridge Diet program is extremely calorie restricted and supplies as few as 415-500 calories per day. The pre-packaged, formulated foods are available in a range of flavours in powder, liquid and bar form. The Cambridge Diet comes in a number of different formats. These include individual meals in sachets of powder which are mixed with water to produce soups and milkshakes. There are also ready-mixed Tetra Briks and chocolate-covered meal bars. Cambridge is available in a number of flavours. The Cambridge Diet is only available through independent Cambridge counsellors who provide a personal screening, advisory, monitoring and support service. These counsellors are trained but are not necessarily licensed medical professionals.
Very low calorie diets, such as the Cambridge Diet, are based on the fact that if a dieter takes in fewer calories than he or she needs for energy, then the body will burn stored fat for energy, which will result in weight loss and a leaner appearance. Medical guidance and caution is needed when considering the extremely restrictive Cambridge Diet. Caloric intake may be too severely restricted for many people and lead to rebound weight gain. This is due to the fact that severe calorie restriction results in the body going into "starvation" mode, which leads to a lower metabolism, the body's way to try to prevent complete starvation. This often leads to gaining even more weight then was lost after the diet has been discontinued. This encourages "yo-yo" dieting patterns that are unhealthy and do not result in effective weight control. Severe calorie and nutrient restriction can also lead to low blood sugar (hypoglycemia), low blood pressure, dizziness, and weakness. They can also result in ketoacidosis, a condition in which severe restriction of calories or carbohydrates leads to dangerously high levels of acids called ketones build up in the blood and can poison the body.
The most effective weight loss diets include enough calories to allow dieters to lose about one to two pounds per week. Rapid weight loss is not recommended. Good, effective weight loss plans also advocate for a healthy lifestyle that includes regular exercise, while the Cambridge diet actually cautions against anything but the mildest activity while on the diet. Due to the severe restrictions of the Cambridge Diet, it is not recommended for many people with many conditions, such as diabetes and heart disease. Any diet may have the potential to be harmful, so consultation with a health care provider before starting the Cambridge Diet or any diet plan and exercise program is recommended.
Other diets similar to Cambridge Diet include:
Conditions associated with Cambridge Diet include:
The following foods may be restricted or excluded from Cambridge Diet:
The following foods may be focused on as part of Cambridge Diet:
The following are potential risks or complications of the diet (Cambridge Diet):
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