The term anorexia diet can refer to one of two things. In general it describes the extreme caloric restriction those with anorexia — of whom about 90% are women — subject themselves to as well as the limited food choices they make. Anorexia diet is also another name for the Ana boot camp diet, which is essentially a 50-day fast that can cause severe health issues.
The diet typically consists of eating fewer than 1,000 calories per day. Many go much lower than this caloric intake, however. This restriction of calories is often coupled with excessive exercising, as well as a greater than normal consumption of water.
This type of diet can also include eating only very low calorie foods such as saltine crackers, rice cakes, carrot sticks, and celery. The focus of this diet is typically on eating what are termed as negative calorie foods. The idea behind this regimen centers on the belief that the body burns more calories while simply eating the food than it has consumed. Grapefruit, papaya, chili peppers, asparagus, radishes, watercress, and iceberg lettuce are also all believed to fit into this category.
This idea of negative calorie foods, however, is a myth, despite its prevalence in an anorexia diet. The body burns about 10% of the calories consumed when eating. This means that even though a stick of celery has about two calories, only .2 calories are burned while eating it. Despite this fact, those who follow this diet often believe they can end up with a calorie deficit by eating only these foods.
There are also a few anorexia diet regimes, all of which are considered extremely unhealthy by medical professionals. One of the most popular of these is known as the Ana boot camp diet. This type of anorexia diet lasts for 50 days, with each day's calories ranging from zero to 800. The idea is that by eating next to nothing one day and a little bit the next, one can trick the body out of going into starvation mode, thus maximizing weight loss.
While this type of anorexia diet will almost assuredly cause one to lose weight, the health detriments associated with it are extreme. Fatigue, hair loss, skin issues, bone loss, and tissue deterioration are all very likely to occur during this 50-day diet. It can also cause rapid changes in blood pressure as well as permanently damage the reproductive systems of both men and women.
On top of all this, at the end of the diet any food consumed afterward will most likely turn directly into fat, causing one to gain the weight back. This is part of the body's defense mechanism against starvation; after going so long with little to no food, the body's fat stores are depleted. Once extra food is available, its first goal is to replenish these resources. These health issues are common with almost every anorexia type diet, which is why most medical professionals insist that regardless of the diet followed, at least 1,200 daily calories are needed to maintain proper bodily function.