Don't do it, say young fans after trying K-pop idols' extreme diets

PHOTO: YouTube/ChloeTing

K-pop stars look picture perfect - slim, stylish, and flawless. 

Some fans aspire to look just as slender as their idols by emulating the stars' extreme diets - and it appears to be an emerging trend on social media.

Over the past year, many teenage fans have uploaded videos of themselves trying out the diets of K-pop stars on YouTube, which have garnered up to millions of views and thousands of likes.

They created video diaries of their crash diets - which typically last for a few days - and track the weight that they lost by putting their pre- and post-diet photos up together for comparison.

Many teenage fans are trying out K-pop stars' extreme diets.Photo: YouTube screengrabs

While style and beauty analysts have cautioned against such diets because they could potentially harm the body, leading to "hair loss, depression and other health problems", many young K-pop fans have gone ahead to try them out anyway.

In these videos, a large number of them are quick to clarify that they're not encouraging viewers to try out these unhealthy diets, and claim that they made these videos to show people the emotional and mental stress that K-pop stars have to go through when they go on these diets.

"This video is meant to be a lighthearted yet informative means of illustrating the insane standards that K-pop idols are held to by their entertainment companies, not to encourage people to try this diet," says a Youtuber who goes by the name of moonROK.

Some of the diets that they have tried include the IU diet and Red Velvet Wendy's diet, named after the singers themselves. The IU diet consists of having one apple for breakfast, two sweet potatoes for lunch, and one protein shake for dinner, while Red Velvet Wendy's diet consists of having half a cup of rice for breakfast and half an apple for lunch - meal plans which the stars confessed to having followed through when they needed to lose weight quickly.

While these YouTubers managed to lose some weight from going on those diets, there were downsides to it, with some reporting the side effects that they experienced.

YouTuber Ellbat who tried Red Velvet's Wendy diet said, "I did this diet for three days and it left me tired, moody and ill. If you want to change your body, start by making changes to your everyday diet; DONT GO ON A DIET! I do not recommend this diet AT ALL".

The YouTubers acknowledged that these diets are not sustainable in the long run and stressed the need to lose weight in a healthy manner by making small, consistent changes in one's everyday diet as well as consulting a healthcare professional when necessary.

"Most of the weight I did lose was from water weight. Two days after this diet I have gained back two pounds. Like almost all diets, most (if not all) of the weight comes back after beginning to eat normally. What does last is a healthy lifestyle," said YouTuber Helen Moon who tried IU's diet.

"I highly recommend anyone who's having trouble or have questions with dieting to see a dietitian as it's important to get professional help. I don't think these K-pop diets like the IU diet, SNSD diet, or Jimin diet are sustainable and are extremely risky to your body," says YouTuber Chloe Ting.

Well, if these crash diets can make K-pop idols cry, fans should look for better ways to shed the pounds.