It’s the new year, which means everyone and their neighbor has set a new year’s goal to get fit, which means a lot of new diets popping up. Rather than just eating more vegetables, some people take a more creative approach to health—why mess around with boring old exercise and healthy eating when you could just eat air instead? Listed below are a handful of diets that, while certainly innovative, we can’t in good conscience recommend for the general public.


Breatharians believe that they have solved the problem of overpopulation and overeating at the same time: just don’t eat. According to the breatharian creed, humans don’t need food, or sometimes even water, to live. Instead, we can all live off of prana, a Sanskrit word that means “life air,” or “life force.” The diet has spirituality at its core but can have dangerous results (for obvious reasons).


It’s something many of us might have considered after eating a particularly delicious steak or burger: what if I only ate meat? A small portion of the population has made this thought a reality and eats almost exclusively meat with very little produce, fiber, or carbohydrates. One meatatarian blogger advises other meatatarians to watch out for disguised vegetables on the food they’ve ordered—make sure you aren’t getting any onion bits on your hot dog!

Cotton ball diet

The cotton ball diet recommends its users eat cotton balls—yes, the same thing that you use to remove makeup or plug your ears—soaked in juice. The idea is that the cotton balls will make you feel full without requiring you to eat any food, with just a little juice to cut down on that dry, cottony taste. This diet is particularly dangerous, since your body can’t properly digest these cotton balls. Not many diets have articles written about them listing the ways this diet could kill you, but the cotton ball diet does.

If you’re trying to make healthier food choices this year, please use reputable sources like USDA’s My Plate site, and remember to talk to your doctor before making any significant changes! You can create a personalized diet plan that fits your needs and is completely doable as well. Make improving your health fun and easy this year!

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