Stars’ Punishing Get Thin Quick Schemes — Let the Body Beware

Sofia Vergara ABC photo

With the 62nd Annual Primetime Emmy Awards coming up Sunday (Aug. 29), you’d better believe the dieting and working out in Tinsel Town has reached a fever pitch as stars get red carpet ready, and everyone else strives to pass muster on one of the glamour nights of the year.

“Modern Family’s” sexy Sofia Vergara admitted she’s been trying to be good about what she eats, so she can look her shapely best.  Her approach – carrying lollipops in her handbag so “instead of a tiramisu, I can have a boring lollipop” – could launch a trend.  Sadly, lollipops that can make one look like Sofia Vergara exist only in our dreams.

That’s good for a smile, but other “diet like celebrities” ideas out there are taken quite seriously – sometimes for the worse.  As a number of Hollywood stars can attest, rash super diets can have long-lasting negative effects on one’s health

The “Master Cleanse” diet — also called the “Lemonade” or “Maple Sugar” diet — highly-touted awhile back for helping Beyonce shed 20 pounds, is actually more than 60 years old.  Howard Stern sidekick Robin Quivers, who went vegan a couple of years back, lost some 70 pounds on the cleanse regime, in which followers chug a concoction of fresh lemon juice, maple syrup, cayenne pepper, and water for a minimum of 10 days.  But doctors warn of the method, noting that fasting for a few days is fine, but extended fasting can lead to dehydration and electrolyte imbalance.  Electrolyte imbalance can affect the heart and other major organ functions.

The same goes for extreme low carb/low calorie dieting.  According to the American Heart Association, such quick-fix regimes leave out vital vitamins and minerals, may be high in fat and can increase the risk of heart disease.

And they don’t lead to sustained weight loss.

Tales of stars and models using laxatives for fast weight loss are also common — but medical experts say that such practices are actually ineffective, and can cause abdominal pain, dangerously low potassium levels in the blood, and lasting damage to the large intestine.  Low potassium levels can cause cardiac arrhythmia — irregular heat beat, which can be life-threatening.

Matt Damon famously shed 45 pounds from his five-foot 11-inch frame to play a heroin-addicted soldier in the 1996 “Courage Under Fire”  — by running 10 miles a day and adhering to a strict diet of egg whites, chicken, vegetables and dry baked potatoes.  He looked perfect for the role, but, as he has admitted, the diet induced an adrenal gland disorder that made him deathly ill and affected him in following years

Martin Lawrence was jogging in near triple digit temperatures in an effort to lose weight for a movie role in 1999 when he collapsed with a temperature of 107 and was in a coma for three days.

All of which adds up to a cautionary note for those who may be tempted to lose weight in unhealthy ways.

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This entry was posted in The Hollywood Exclusive by Marilyn Beck and Stacy Jenel Smith and tagged , , , , on by .

About Stacy Jenel Smith

I grew up in the San Fernando Valley when it was a kids' Shangri La in the 60s and we had Fabulous Eddie's miniature golf and trampolines on Ventura Boulevard. My big brother frequented The Third Eye psychedelic shop back in the day, but he wound up turning out anyway. Dad was an NBC video man who worked on "Laugh-In," Dean Martin's show, and specials by everyone from Sinatra to Fred Astaire. Mom was a first class home maker and PTA and GCA volunteer. They're still doing great. Anxious to get going in life, I quit college and jumped into journalism when I was still a teenager, and was writing for the New York Times syndicate and People magazine before turning 20. But that was a long time, many adventures, lots of traveling around the world and thousands of interviews ago. I go back to the very last days of hot type and getting to talk to Henry Fonda and Bette Davis, and Sammy Davis at the old Brown Derby...What a ride. That's in no small part thanks to my amazing writing partner, Marilyn Beck, one of the grand old-school Hollywood columnist stars -- a true star -- who knows how to do it right. I'm lucky, for sure. Now is fun, too. I love going out to events with my 17-year-old daughter (Jonas Brothers!). Seeing everything fresh through her eyes renews my excitement about the game. In-between I went back and finished school -- University of Redlands -- married, divorced, and at long last found my true love. My favorite things outside of the show business realm are being with my family, my faith and spiritual growth, learning new things (from doing Qigong to uploading stuff on Facebook), and running. See you on the trail.

One thought on “Stars’ Punishing Get Thin Quick Schemes — Let the Body Beware

  1. Pingback: Celebrities undergoing diets to get red carpet ready | HollywoodNews.com

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