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According to an article from Verywellmind, the cotton ball diet is one of the more popular fad diets in the figure skating industry. One of the more dangerous diets that have been trending over time, the cotton ball diet takes a new extreme to lose weight. But how much is too much when it comes to losing weight? Is it worth the danger? 

The cotton ball involves soaking the cotton balls in either juice or a smoothie to make you feel full while simultaneously restricting calories to maintain minimal body weight or to lose weight. Dipping the cotton balls in juice or smoothies helps trick your palate into thinking you are eating real food when in reality, you are not consuming anything nutritious whatsoever. Some just eat the cotton balls throughout the day, while others are consuming them before a meal, so they are tempted to eat less. There are some individuals that are able to swallow as many as five juice or smoothie-dipped cotton balls in one sitting before they feel completely full. 

The cotton ball diet weirdly enough is not considered an eating disorder, but it can be potentially lethal. It is harmful because you are not only starving your body of the necessary nutrients and vitamins but are putting yourself in medical danger. Your gastrointestinal system starts from your mouth and follows a path that involves your esophagus, your stomach and your small and large intestines. The cotton balls can easily clog your gastrointestinal system, like a clog in a pipe. As a result, this clog can be an obstruction, which is often a surgical emergency. Surgery is needed to then unclog your gastrointestinal system before it ruptures, or infection starts.  What many people may not know is that most cotton balls are made from bleached polyester rather than natural cotton. Because of this, toxins can build up over time and become harmful. 

The cotton ball diet can result in malnutrition, weakened bones, fatigue and playing a major role in your emotional and mental health. Many who engage in the cotton ball diet or other disorder eating habits are struggling with low self-esteem, past trauma, control issues and other underlying triggers that most likely need to be addressed by a health professional. 

The cotton ball diet is hands down one of the most dangerous ways to drop weight. It often leads to being treated at a professional treatment facility that focuses on disorder eating and underlying triggers. It usually takes a team of health care professionals like therapists and dietitians. Whatever you do, never lead yourself down a path that has you eating things that are dangerous that can damage your body. When it comes to dieting always consult your doctor and a dietitian to get further educated on healthy steps to work on your nutritional goals. 

My name is Katelyn Richardson. I am 27 years old. I am currently attending Central Washington University studying my bachelors degree in food and sciences to become a nutritionist and later a diabetes educator for kids. I've been personally battling type 1 diabetes since I was six years old. I love being outside, vintage shopping, watching movies, and going to stock car races!
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