Cabbage Soup Diet: Does It Work for Weight Loss?

The Cabbage Soup Diet is a seven-day eating plan that promises you will lose 10 pounds in one week. This diet does work for short-term weight loss, as does any diet that dramatically reduces your calorie intake and limits your food choices. However, this restrictive diet is not safe for long-term use. Even the diet makers recommend you only stay on this plan for seven days, as this diet is intended to jump-start your weight loss goals and not to maintain them.

The Diet Plan

On this diet, you can eat as much cabbage soup as you would like. In addition to the soup, you can eat the following foods on each of these days:

  • Day 1: All the fruit you want, except bananas
  • Day 2: All the leafy green vegetables you want and a baked potato at dinner
  • Day 3: All the fruits and veggies you’d like
  • Day 4: Up to 8 bananas and all the skim milk you’d like
  • Day 5: 10 to 20 ounces of beef and up to 6 tomatoes
  • Day 6: All the beef and vegetables you’d like
  • Day 7: Brown rice, unsweetened fruit juice and vegetables

On this diet, you’re not supposed to get bored since the food options change each day. You’re also supposed to stay satisfied, since you can eat as much as you’d like of the allowed food. Since the diet is low in essential nutrients, it is not healthy to extend the duration of this diet. This diet was only created for adults, and it poses serious health risks for children and adolescents   

Weight Loss

The Cabbage Soup Diet can be classified as a fad diet. You will lose weight quickly while on this diet, but the weight lost will be from water and not from fat. Therefore, the second you resume your normal eating habits, the weight will come right back and all of your starvation efforts will go to waste. If you’re trying to lose weight for a one-night event, such as a wedding, this diet might prove to be effective. However, this diet does not offer a maintenance plan and does not teach healthy habits that will last a lifetime.


Any diet that causes you to rapidly drop weight is not considered healthy. In order to lose weight in a healthy manner and ensure the pounds are gone for good, you should only lose 1 to 2 pounds a week. Your body does not like to quickly drop weight, and it will have problems functioning properly if rapid weight loss is sustained.

In addition, it is not healthy to only eat fruits and vegetables in a given day. Your body depends on carbs and healthy fat for energy, and without this sustenance, you will experience fatigue and might even feel faint. It is also not healthy to only eat beef, as it contains a high amount of saturated fat. The food plan posed on the Cabbage Soup Diet is not well-balanced or nutritionally sound.

The Cabbage Soup Diet might help you lose weight in the short term, but the diet is unhealthy and won’t keep the weight off for the long term.


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