A bowl of soup as part of a cabbage soup diet

Why is the cabbage soup diet ineffective for bodybuilding?

Lose more than 5 kilos in only 1 week? Now that's a tempting promise! This is exactly what the cabbage soup diet. This dietary method is currently very popular among people who want to lose weight. But is it really effective for the practitioners of strength training ? Spoiler: no!

What is the cabbage soup diet?

The cabbage soup diet is a diet supposed to help you lose weight quickly.

As its name indicates, it consists in consuming almost exclusively cabbage for seven days, in the form of soup. Indeed, cabbage is a food low in calories and rich in fiber. It is also high in nutrients, including potassium, calcium, magnesium and a good dose of vitamins.

At first glance, it is ideal for the weight loss. Like most green vegetables, cabbage has very little energy. 100 grams of white cabbage bring about 36 calories (4.6 grams of carbohydrates, 1.4 grams of protein and 0.6 grams of fat).

A basket of white cabbage
Cabbage is a low-calorie vegetable, ideal for weight loss.

The cabbage soup diet is therefore a low-calorie dietThis is because the caloric intake provided by cabbage at each meal is lower than the real needs.

This diet provides for 2 to 3 meals per day. In addition to the soup, some other foods may be allowed. They are generally incorporated gradually over the course of the day. This is, for example, the case of fruits and vegetables in season (except bananas), brown rice, chicken, beef (low fat), skim milk or sugar-free fruit juice.

In short, a cabbage soup diet is effective for losing weight and burning calories. But does cabbage soup really make you slim?

The ineffectiveness of this diet for bodybuilding

The yo-yo effect

Whether they are physically active or not, those who adopt the cabbage soup diet actually observe a rapid weight lossThis is simply because of the fact that it is a very small amount of money. This is simply due to the caloric deficit set up. But let's take a closer look.

In reality, the cabbage soup diet does not exclusively target the body fat. A large part of these few pounds lost is water, because cabbage is a food diuretic.

At the end of this diet, you will notice a weight gain due to the return of your eating habits.

Muscle loss

Another problem is that cabbage is a vegetable low in proteins.

To cope with this low intake, your body will have to deplete its protein stock. This mechanically leads to a loss of muscle mass.

And when you say muscle loss, you say slowing down of the metabolism. Your body will burn fewer and fewer calories, which will slow down your weight loss. In short, it's a vicious circle!

This is precisely what athletes want to avoid during a dryer. They often prefer a moderate caloric deficit to lose weight, but not muscle.

Physical fatigue

To top it off, the cabbage soup diet is low in carbohydrates.

You will therefore feel tired on a daily basis and during your workouts. Lack of energy will make it extremely difficult to perform during your workouts.

A shirtless athlete showing signs of fatigue in the weight room.
The cabbage soup diet is not very energetic and is incompatible with physical activity.

As a sportsman, it is fundamental not to have any deficiencies to optimize your dryness and not to put you in danger.

The dangers of the cabbage soup diet to lose weight

In addition to being ineffective, the cabbage soup diet can be dangerous for your health.

Depriving yourself of everything in order to lose weight on your stomach or buttocks is not a sustainable solution. Given the many needs of the body, a single diet restrictive and prolonged is never a good idea.

In addition to the fatigueIf you don't eat well, you may suffer from nutritional deficiencies that could affect your health. At the time, you could indeed lose weight quickly. But the weight regain will be just as fast, often accompanied by a few extra pounds to those initially lost.

The digestion A final element to consider is the difficulty of the cabbage.

If you are looking for how to lose weightIf you are not satisfied with your diet, your only option is to adopt a varied diet and to set up a controlled caloric deficit.


You got it, cabbage soup and sport diet do not mix well. Not to mention the frustration of the monotony of this diet, it is simply not effective in the long term. For lose belly and excess weight, it is better to be patient and opt for a balanced diet and a good distribution of macronutrients.

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