Words by Emma Tiernan
January 22nd, 2019
With each new year comes new lifestyle and diet trends, and 2018 was no different. We dove into the most googled diets of the past 12 months to see what all the fuss was about — and if they’re worth our time in 2019. From all meat diets to wellness apps, we researched each trend to see what it entails and what, if any, the benefits are.
The keto diet is a low-carb, high-fat diet that helps burn fat more effectively. Following a ketogenic diet is said to cause your body to go into a metabolic state called ketosis, where the body produces small molecules known as ketones. While on the keto diet, the body turns to these ketones as an alternative source of energy instead of using glucose which will be on short supply. Ketones are produced by limiting your intake of carbohydrates, protein and completely eliminating sugar. The keto diet completely switches your body’s fuel source to run mostly on fat, thus burning fat 24/7.
The main benefit of the keto diet is weight loss; with the body burning fat for energy 24/7 you can lose a substantial amount of weight quicker than by following other diets. As well as weight loss, you are likely to experience a more balanced supply of energy and hunger loss. However, if you are thinking of following the keto diet it is worthy to note that there is a lot of controversy surrounding the diet and if you suffer from high blood pressure, diabetes or are breastfeeding it is probably best to avoid. It is recommended that you talk to a healthcare professional before swapping to a keto diet.
The Dubrow Diet is coined as intermitting fasting with a twist. The diet was created by husband and wife duo Heather Dubrow of The Real Housewives of Orange County fame and Terry Dubrow MD, a Newport Beach plastic surgeon and star of reality TV show Botched. The diet involves intermitting fasting divided into three phases. Intermitting fasting involves a reset period where you fast for either 12, 14 or 16 hours and a refuelling period where you can eat and ‘refuel’.
Phase 1: Red Carpet Ready
This phase is the beginning of the diet where you fast for 16 hours for a 2 to 5 day period. They call this a metabolic bootcamp to get your body used to fasting and reset your hunger and fullness cues.
Phase 2: Summer’s Coming
This phase is continued until you reach your ‘goal weight’ — the amount of hours you fast for each day depends on how quickly you want to reach your target weight. If you want to reach your goal quicker, opt for fasting for 16 hours and if you are not in a rush you can drop down to either 14 or 12 hours.
Phase 3: Look Hot While Looking Like a Human
Yes, you read the title correctly. This is the phase where you maintain the intermitting fasting lifestyle and fast for 12 hours five days a week and 16 hours twice a week.
This diet places a lot of emphasis on body image, you just need to read the titles of each phase to see that. While the Dubrows say the diet doesn’t focus on counting calories or macros, you do end up cutting down on the average recommended calories per day by only allowing yourself a certain amount of time to eat. This normally means that your body doesn’t have the fuel it needs to function properly. This diet isn’t as strict as others as it does allow you to ‘cheat’ as in you are not restricted from having a cookie or a glass of wine. However, the ‘green light’ food list does change depending on what phase of the diet you are in. The reported benefits of going on the Dubrow diet is weight loss, feeling ‘younger’ (according to the Dubrows) and healthier, lessened hunger and more energy.
Noom describes itself as a wellness program and aims to help you create healthier habits and lead a healthy lifestyle. Noom is an app that allows the user to log the food they eat (while sticking with their calorie allowance), access workouts, track their exercise, set goals and get recipes. While using the app you can browse and compare over 37 million different food options making logging your food easy; you can also select the portion size so you get the most accurate result. The diet plan is specifically tailored to the user and created by a team of nutritional therapists and health professionals. The Noom experts also give personalised feedback throughout the program to help you improve and reach your goals.
The app has two programs users can choose from, the first being the healthy weight program and the second a diabetes management program. The program lasts for four months and during this time you log the food you eat in the app, where the food is colour coded and the program recommends sticking to food that is nutrient-dense which are marked green.
This program isn’t a quick fix like other diets as it focuses on creating a healthy, sustainable lifestyle while helping you lose weight. The program doesn’t just focus on the physical but also on the mental aspect. They understand that losing weight and people’s attitude to food can be a struggle and bring about negative thoughts and emotions. Noom says it wants to break through these barriers that people have towards food by changing any bad habits they may have and create healthier ones.
This diet is pretty self-explanatory and is probably the most extreme diet featured on the list. With the carnivore diet, all you eat is meat, with emphasis on fatty cuts of beef. You can also consume different types of meat like chicken and fish as well as some dairy and eggs. If you are following this diet strictly then all you are permitted to drink is water, however, others who follow it more loosely tend to drink milk as well as tea and coffee. The main benefit of going on an all meat diet is said to be weightloss or for anti-inflammatory purposes.
The Mediterranean diet places emphasis on plant-based foods. The diet is similar to the traditional diets of the countries that border the Mediterranean sea, hence the name. These countries tend to have a focus on fruits, vegetables, nuts and grains. They cook more with healthy fats like olive oil and season their meals with herbs and spices over salt. People following the Mediterranean diet don’t eat red meat often, instead, they opt more for chicken and fish. The benefit of this diet is to promote a healthy heart, as it is said that following the Mediterranean diet will significantly lower the chances of heart disease and bad cholesterol.
*These diets were researched for the purpose of this article. Before embarking on any lifestyle changes, seek the advice of a health professional.
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