The Cotton Ball Diet: Skinny Models

This article is part of our Stupid Diet Series, therefore we do not recommend this diet.

I’ll spoil the ending – you eat cotton balls. If you think about it, though, cotton balls are made out of natural cotton, they contain some calories, and fiber, and they take up a lot of space. They might be the ideal diet food!

Except the fibre you get is not even close to the type of fibre you need, it has no vitamins or minerals whatsoever and you have to eat freaking cotton balls! Even if you soak them in gelatin like some people do, you can already tell before we get into the details that this is probably not a healthy or a fun way to lose weight.

The Idea

You replace meals or snacks with cotton balls soaked in gelatin, or just dry cotton balls. In other versions of the diet you eat the cotton balls before meals, and they prevent you from eating too much. The rationale is that the cotton balls contain some calories, and they fill you up, preventing you from wanting to eat anything fattening, like real food.

The idea itself is laughable, because there are plenty of other ways to feel full without putting calories into your body – and none of them involve eating cotton wool balls. Drinking water or eating some sugar-free gelatin are both way healthier ways of making you feel fuller on less food.

What’s In It

You can go to a pharmacist and buy some bog-standard cotton balls and gelatin, or you can pay through the nose for a ‘Cotton Ball Diet’ kit containing brand name items of the same description. Either way, you’re just eating cotton balls with or without a side of gelatin before each meal, or instead of meals.

If you can do it, then good for you.

Who’s On It

The Cotton Ball Diet was taken up briefly by a few C-list celebrities, flash-in-the pan models and that actress on that series you liked that only got one and a half seasons, but then she got crazy thin and had bony bikini photos of her and her much older Italian lover pasted in a European tabloid.

Bottom line – nobody important ever tried it, stuck to it, and got any real benefit from it.

Why You Might Want to Avoid It

This part gets confusing so I’m going to try and explain it as simply as possible. You have to eat cotton balls. Seriously – when did this ever sound like a great idea to anyone?

The idea of filling yourself up with something that has no or very few calories is not new, and it can be done in way healthier ways. Down a pint of water before every meal and there is no way you will want to eat as much. If you’re desperate, sugar-free gelatin is available and can be eaten before meals.

The main reason, however, why you would want to avoid the Cotton Ball diet as a way to lose weight is because eating cotton balls can have an immediate and profoundly negative effect on your digestive tract. Imagine having to explain to your employer that you have to take off the rest of the week to go and get your stomach pumped, your bowel run, and your cognitive function checked.

Why? Oh, I was eating cotton balls to lose weight.

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