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How safe are liquid diets?

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Ideally, liquid diet drinks should give you a balance of nutrients you need throughout the day, but that isn't always the case. Very low-calorie diets (400-800 calories per day) in particular can be lacking in a balance of protein, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, and minerals you need and should only be used under medical supervision. Missing out on essential nutrients can lead to side effects such as fatigue, dizziness, hair loss, gallstones, and heart damage. Also, if you don't get enough fiber, because you're not eating whole grains, fruits and vegetables, you can get constipated. You also can lose muscle if you don't get enough protein calories in your diet.

From: Liquid Diets WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

Andrea Giancoli, MPH, RD, spokeswoman, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

Flechtner-Mors, M. , August 2000. Obesity Research

National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse: "Crohn's Disease."

Yamamoto, T. , December 2007. Inflammatory Bowel Diseases

Reviewed by Ellen Stokes on June 18, 2017

SOURCES:

Andrea Giancoli, MPH, RD, spokeswoman, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

Flechtner-Mors, M. , August 2000. Obesity Research

National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse: "Crohn's Disease."

Yamamoto, T. , December 2007. Inflammatory Bowel Diseases

Reviewed by Ellen Stokes on June 18, 2017

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Are liquid diets used for medical purposes?

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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

    This tool does not provide medical advice. See additional information.