With some health fads you pay through the nose, then there are those that you actually eat through it. Yes, you read that correctly, there is a new diet that has its users eating through a feeding tube inserted into their nostrils. What makes this controversial approach so, well, controversial is that some doctors approve it, at the passionate opposition of many of their peers.

More formally referred to as the K-E Diet, short for Ketogenic Enteral Nutrition, the approach is about seeing quick results (it’s a 10-day program). The diet is not new, but it has only just gained wide-spread recognition in the U.S. during a highly publicized case of a bride looking to lose 20 pounds quickly to fit into her wedding gown.

In an interview with ABC News, bride-to-be Jessica Schnaider said “I don’t have all the time on the planet just to focus an hour and a half a day on exercise, so I came to the doctor, I saw the diet and I said, ‘You know what? Why not? Let me try it. So I decided to go ahead and give it a shot.”

The issue is not just that you are sticking tubes up your nose, but the effects it can have both nutritionally and physically. The first bone of contention is that it is an extremely low-calories approach (about 800 calories of liquid food each day). Secondly, many medical professionals are concerned about the potential for physical harm.

"It seems very extreme because of its potential for infections and irritation," said Suzy Weems, Ph.D., chair of Baylor University's family and consumer sciences. "It seems to be illogical to do this for one fairy-tale day when most brides have plenty of time before their weddings to lose weight in a healthy way. The long-term solution to maintain a good weight is eat right and exercise."

That’s hitting the nail on the head: the whole approach is centered around the idea of “emergency” weight loss for a 10-day period. Even if you set aside the medical concerns, a scenario in which a person would “need” to do this is so limited.

Then there is the potential for developing or encouraging a current eating disorder.

“Even though they might do this one time for the wedding, I think there can be addictive qualities to these diets, and I think that someone might continue to do something like this. And it could put them in a really dangerous low weight place,” said eating disorders specialist Dr. Jodi Krumholz, director of Nutrition at the Renfew Center in Philadelphia.

Like other short-term liquid diets, it's certainly not a good idea since it doesn’t center around teaching people long-term behavioral changes. This is a common misconception with weight loss surgery, where the layperson thinks that the procedure, whether it’s gastric bypass or the newer plication surgery, patients still have to learn how to eat right and exercise, or they risk gaining the weight back.

Author's Bio: 

Jason Knapfel is Content Manager at Webfor, an Internet marketing company. One of their clients is Doctors of Weight Loss, a website that provides expert information on gastric bypass and other weight loss topics.